From idea to novel, proposal to memoir, first draft to first royalties, Allison K Williams brings deep understanding of dramatic structure, sensitivity to voice and theme, technical expertise, and contagious enthusiasm for your work.
Allison has edited and coached writers to deals with Penguin Random House, Knopf, Mantle, Spencer Hill, St. Martin’s and independent presses. She’s guided essayists to publication in the New Yorker, Time, the Guardian, the New York Times, McSweeney’s and TED Talks. As Social Media Editor for Brevity, she inspires thousands of writers with blogs on craft and the writing life.
Allison is the author of Get Published in Literary Magazines and Seven Drafts: Self-Edit Like a Pro From Blank Page to Book. A former circus performer, Allison has written for NPR, CBC, the New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, Creative Nonfiction, McSweeney’s, Kenyon Review Online and Travelers’ Tales.
A direct, honest and supportive teacher known for his ability to draw out meaning in memoir, Dinty W. Moore is author of The Story Cure: A Book Doctor’s Pain-Free Guide to Finishing Your Novel or Memoir and the memoir Between Panic & Desire among many other books.
Dinty has published essays and stories in The Southern Review, The Georgia Review, Harpers, The New York Times Sunday Magazine, Arts & Letters, The Normal School and elsewhere. A former professor of nonfiction writing at Ohio University, he serves as Editor-in-Chief for Brevity, a noted online journal of flash nonfiction.
Dinty consults regularly with authors and publishers on book proposals and revisions, many going on to publish with Big Five houses and university presses. A well-known and popular workshop leader, he has led workshops in Spain, Scotland, Ireland, Mexico, and throughout the United States.
Overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Villa Los Aires gives sweeping vistas, breathtaking sunsets and gentle breezes on 60 acres of private reserve. View rainforest wildlife, birds, monkeys and butterflies; splash in private waterfalls. A media room with cinema seating, a pool, and plenty of terraces for eating, lounging and writing give your creativity room to breathe.
Bedrooms include A/C and WiFi; daily maid service and complimentary water bottles. Evenings feature dinners from our private chef, or excursions to charming local restaurants.
Your pre-arrival manuscript evaluation includes supportive, specific, written critique of up to 50 double-spaced pages (plus your synopsis or chapter summaries), a coaching session, and a customized work plan for your retreat.
On location, you'll have daily guidance, craft seminars and a one-on-one session.
Live-editing sessions led by Allison & Dinty illuminate writing craft but this is not a "workshop." Scheduled and informal Publishing Talks address your writing-career questions.
A post-retreat work plan, feedback on an additional 25 pages and follow-up coaching session help you sustain momentum at home.
To give the personal coaching and specific editorial feedback your manuscript needs before, during and after the retreat, participation is limited to eight writers.
Spacious rooms have private baths. 2 doubles and 4 singles are available; see registration for pricing. Share with a writing friend or travel partner, or make a lasting connection with a new literary friend.
After a morning craft talk and generative writing exercise, writers work individually in shared spaces, revising their new writing, incorporating it into existing work, or focusing on their current project.Allison and Dinty provide individual guidance as needed.
Focused time away from home helps you plow through pages.
Direct, specific feedback helps you write better.
Rebirth Your Book combines a retreat environment with personal editorial assistance. You'll have a work plan to start writing on day one. Questioning an editorial note? Lost your plot thread? Ask Allison or Dinty right now—we're across the table.
Pre-arrival session with editorial feedback and your work plan for the retreat.
Scheduled one-on-one time during the retreat to discuss your draft-in-progress and writing goals. Informal chats and writing talk throughout the day.
Follow-up coaching session to sustain your writing momentum back home.
Rebirth Your Book happens in beautiful, culturally rich locations with great local food and a calm, supportive writing environment. Each retreat includes energy-boosting excursions to heritage sites and outdoor activities. Give your writing brain a rest and enjoy waterfalls, the beach, and a visit to the animal sanctuary.
Joining the Retreat
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You should be working on a book, in any stage of development.
It can be a novel in any genre, a memoir or an essay collection. It can be an idea, an outline or proposal and some material, a partial manuscript, or a draft that isn't singing yet.
You're not reading others' work for critique, so the experience level of your fellow writers isn't a big factor in your retreat.
No problem! Your pages for feedback can be part of a book, a series of essays, or an idea and notes. If you're working on a book, we'll look at your synopsis and (proposed) chapter summaries with your pages.
If you're starting from an idea, or exploring your writing life, we'll use your pre-arrival coaching to set goals for your time. In that case, you can choose to submit your entire 75 pages after the retreat and we'll guide you forward.
A friend or family member age 16+ sharing your room pays a companion fee of $1800. Their trip will include lodging, group meals and activities, local tours and airport transfers. It doesn't include Writing in Company, one-on-one time or editorial feedback.
Pairs of writing friends often enjoy Rebirth Your Book together; solo writers make lasting connections.
Single-occupancy rooms are available for an additional charge of $495-650.
get here and get writingContact Us
US and Canadian citizens do not need a visa for Costa Rica.
Costa Rica is open for travelers, and vaccinating briskly. Masks are generally worn inside businesses and in public, populated areas; you'll fit right in if you prefer to mask fulltime. Costa Rican health care is of a high standard and readily available. Meals, writing time and talks are on a covered outdoor patio.
Allison will personally visit Costa Rica in late 2022 to check safety protocols and the local "feel." The travel industry is eager for our return, and this is a rare chance to visit Costa Rica without hordes of tourists.
Allison and Dinty are fully vaccinated. All participants must provide proof of COVID vaccination. Please also note the payment and refund policy below.
As we'd normally say: travelers to any destination should update routine vaccinations and bring a small supply of stomach remedies and sufficient prescription medications. Well-stocked pharmacies are within 20 minutes' drive.
Airport transfers are provided in and out of San Jose airport (SJO).
For group sightseeing, transportation will be provided. For personal exploration, jungle trails are on the property; you're also welcome to bring your own 4x4 rental car. Costa Rican car rental insurance is mandatory and expensive; ask Allison about reputable companies with firm advance quotes and how to use your credit card insurance.
Los Aires is in hilly terrain with paved and dirt paths including ramps and small steps. The driveway is gravel. An all-terrain wheelchair would be able to traverse the grounds and some hiking trails.
The main terrace, where we have writing time and meals, hassmooth, finished floors with small steps down to the pool.
Rooms in the main house are up a flight of wide stairs. Room interiors are one level, with step-free access to bathrooms. Showers are wide enough to accomodate a wheelchair. This retreat has plenty of space & additional beds for a caregiver or companion to share your room.
Allison and Dinty have worked with writers who are d/Deaf, hearing-impaired, blind, visually-impaired, neuro-atypical and with physical disabilities. We want to work with you—let's discuss how to make it an excellent experience.
Our writing time and excursions are in English; the house manager speaks English; house staff speak primarily Spanish. We recommend keeping Google Translate on your phone with the Spanish dictionary downloaded, or carrying a phrasebook.
The vast majority of Ticos are friendly, hospitable and kind to tourists.
Los Aires is on spacious private grounds. If hiking alone, please leave information about where you are going and when you expect to return.
As with any destination, keep an eye on your belongings when on the beach.
Our private chef Yennere cooks fresh Costa Rican cuisine.
Snacks, fruit, juice, coffee and water are always available.
Please advise us of any dietary restrictions and we will work to accommodate your needs as much as possible.
You're welcome to add hotel nights, tours, or exploration time before or after the retreat. We’re happy to provide personal recommendations or connect you with a local travel agency to extend your trip. You can pick up a personal rental car in the nearest town, or at the airport to keep one throughout your stay.
write, relax, write some more
Everyone works on their own, with the energy of a shared writing space. Sessions begin with a craft talk and generative writing. Then, you decide whether to continue the new writing; incorporate it into your existing work; or focus on your current project.
As Allison says, "If I'm writing with a buddy and I start to get bored or frustrated, I look up and think, I can't quit now—she's still going!"
Afterwards, each person shares how their work went and may—but doesn't have to—read a short passage.
Throughout Writing in Company time, retreat leaders will be available to talk through problems, suggest new ways to tackle a tough section, or give you a quick exercise to shake your writing loose.
Nope. While reading group members' work in advance and noting points for discussion is a valuable practice, your focus is on your book.
During Live-Editing, you'll glean insights for your own work from watching others, as well as having your turn in the (optional) spotlight.
At the end of the week, we'll have a casual evening reading. This is an opportunity to share aloud pages you've been working on with a small, supportive audience. Travel partners are welcome.
You'll receive feedback on up to 50 pages before arrival, plus your synopsis or chapter summaries if desired. After the retreat, you'll receive feedback on another 25 pages of revisions or new work.
In your pre-retreat coaching session, we'll discuss your concept, voice, story, character and craft, as well as what you want to accomplish during the retreat, and set out a specific Work Plan. If you're at an early stage and don't have a lot of pages, we'll focus on your idea, purpose and process.
During the retreat, you'll have a scheduled one-on-one meeting to discuss your work-in-progress, your writing and your publication goals.
Throughout the week we'll have plenty of casual writing-related discussions with leaders and/or your fellow writers.
After returning home, you'll have another 30-minute editorial call to check in and address questions or new challenges as you finish your draft.
To give each writer the individual and specific attention their manuscript needs, the retreat is limited to eight writers with Allison & Dinty co-leading. Non-writing travel partners may join us for meals, tours and activities.
Lodging in spacious rooms with private baths provide plenty of space to spread out. Additional writing areas are available throughout the property: find your secret spot!
Booking & Payment
let's work with your budgetContact Us
Rebirth Your Book accepts Venmo, Zelle, Canadian e-transfers, US checks, PayPal and credit cards via PayPal. A $500 deposit on acceptance reserves your place.
Balance can be paid as follows:
Or talk to us about a plan that works for you.
We offer a $100 discount for payment via check, Venmo, Zelle, direct deposit or e-transfer (when we don't pay credit card fees, we pass the savings to you!)
Rebirth Your Book/Rebirth Your Writing participates in AWP's Kurt Brown Prize, which awards $500 each year to emerging writers in fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction who wish to attend a writers’ conference, center, retreat, festival, or residency. Winners and six finalists also receive a one-year individual membership in AWP. For more information, visit the AWP website.
Before You Arrive:
In Costa Rica:
We strongly recommend travel & trip-cancellation insurance.
WRITERS BOOKING AFTER Jan 1 2023
Commit with a $500 deposit to hold your place
WRITERS BOOKING BEFORE Jan 1 2023
Commit with a $500 deposit to hold your place
If a writer decides they don’t want to travel after all BEFORE January 1st, we’ll refund their deposit minus a $150 administrative fee.
If a writer decides not to travel AFTER January 1st, after a $150 administrative fee, they can apply their balance to future retreats/intensives.
IF COSTA RICA CLOSES TO TRAVELERS writers still get their pre-retreat editorial feedback and coaching session. They can then:
THE BACKUP PLAN: Virtual Retreat
THE FINE PRINT
Refunds will be sent within 30 days of receipt of notice of cancellation.
Rebirth Your Book reserves the right to cancel the retreat in the event of civil unrest, natural disaster, pandemic or Act of God. In the event of cancellation of the retreat in its entirety, you will receive a full refund of any fees paid, less bank/PayPal/transfer fees. You agree to release Rebirth Your Book and its agents and/or representatives from any liability, including consequential expenses you may have incurred in planning to attend. We will provide you with documentation to support a claim to your travel insurance provider for flights and other expenses not paid to Rebirth Your Book.