Craft & Publishing Voyage



Save the date!
Your voyage begins in...
Craft classes | publishing panels | personal advice For novelists, memoirists, essayists & nonfiction writers (Spouses, partners & friends welcome!)
Relaxed refinement on a classic ship
Explore two literary cities
A revival of your creative self
I’ve been writing for decades in various forms, even in my
profession, but coming away from the retreat experience
is the first time I felt I could say I am a writer
as opposed to a writer is something I want to be.

Erin Green | Rebirth Your Book 2023

The Rebirth Difference


Southampton, UK
New York, USA

8 days/7 nights

April 28th - May 5th, 2024

Your Guides

Publishing | Jane Friedman
Craft & Platform | Allison K Williams
Literary Craft | Dinty W Moore

Your Guides

Experts in Literary, Commercial & Self-Publishing
lead Insightful Panels, Incisive Live-editing
& Small-group Craft workshops

Publishing & Marketing

photo of Jane Friedman

Jane Friedman has 25 years of experience in the publishing industry, with expertise in business strategy for authors and publishers. She’s the co-founder and editor of The Hot Sheet, a paid newsletter for authors, and has previously worked for Writer’s Digest and the Virginia Quarterly Review. In 2023, Jane was awarded Publishing Commentator of the Year by Digital Book World; her newsletter was awarded Media Outlet of the Year in 2020.

Jane’s latest book The Business of Being a Writer, published by The University of Chicago Press, offers the business education writers need but so rarely receive, helping early-career writers to develop a realistic set of expectations about making money from their work, and give working writers a better understanding of the industry. Publishers Weekly said that it is “destined to become a staple reference book for writers and those interested in publishing careers.” Jane has been featured across countless media outlets, including The New York Times, CNN, BBC, The Guardian, CBC, The Washington Post, NPR, and Fox News.

Live-Editing & Author Platform

photo of Allison K Williams

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.

Writing Craft & Literary Publishing

photo of Dinty W. Moore

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.

Author & Book Coach

photo of Amy Goldmacher

Amy Goldmacher is a traditionally published nonfiction author and Author Accelerator certified nonfiction book coach. She has coached writers from book idea to polished, pitch-ready proposals and manuscripts that get agents and book deals. You can find her work on, the Brevity Blog, Pipeline Media Group, and the New York Times, among others. She can be found on social media @solidgoldmacher.

Amy’s creative work has appeared in, and is forthcoming, from the New York Times, Essay Daily, The Gravity of the Thing, Five Minute Lit, and elsewhere. She is a recent winner of the 2022 AWP Kurt Brown Prize in Creative Nonfiction for her glossary form micro memoir. She has spent more than 20 years in information transformation, shepherding authors to publication and increasing their exposure and sales. Amy brings her expertise in the art and science of pattern-finding, sense-making, and structuring information to the book writers want to write, making the process manageable—and enjoyable.

College Professor & Literary Guide New York

photo of Amy Goldmacher

Deborah Williams is a veteran college professor who has lived in New York City on and off for more than thirty years. Her book Not in Sisterhood (Palgrave 2001) is about three US women writers—Willa Cather, Edith Wharton, and Zona Gale—and how they navigated the publishing world of the early twentieth century. Her most recent academic book is The Necessity of Young Adult Fiction (Oxford UP); and she’s currently working on a novel based on the life of Edith Wharton.

Deborah’s essays have appeared in Brevity Blog, The Rumpus, The New York Times, and The Markaz Review, among others.

As our New York Literary Guide, Deb will be joining Allison and special guests to dive into literary sites and landmarks, the publishing business, and her secret corners of the city. Tour New York not like a local—like a writer.

Queen Mary 2

Southampton to New York

Crown jewel of the Cunard fleet, the world's most luxurious transatlantic liner welcomes you with her legendary style and elegance on a literary voyage.

Embark on a writing experience like no other, with straight-up publishing and craft advice surrounded by remarkable craftsmanship in the elegant staterooms and sumptuous restaurants and bars. Explore grand public spaces and find your secluded writing nooks.

Writers and travel companions can enjoy the indulgent on-board spa, order room service 24/7, revel in enthralling entertainment and live music, laugh and think in daily trivia quizzes, or simply relax with a book in the largest library at sea.

Explore & Be Inspired

From literary London to the opulent surroundings at sea, let inspiration take hold.
The Writers Speak
photo of Lindsay Nicholson

A life-changing week of creativity, insight and shared commitment to goals set in the glorious medieval hillside town. Generously and sensitively led by Allison & Dinty, who seemed to be available 24/7 for the discussion of plot points and character development, not to mention advice on where to sample the best pasta and local wine.

In-between writing, we visited historic towns, took part in a wine tasting and were treated to a joyful masterclass in Tuscan cookery. Bonds of friendship strengthened over shared meals.

Anyone who feels stuck in their work should consider this supportive and nurturing environment for rediscovering the joy of writing.

Lindsay Nicholson, MBE, Author of Living On The Seabed

photo of Karen Fine

To write in a beautiful historic place, with a community of writers that were all strangers to me-together we have come to form an integrated group, and perhaps integrated ourselves (in however tiny a way) into the history of this beautiful place.

I had nearly given up on finding an agent when I decided to rework my manuscript with Allison’s help. After the revisions, an agent who had told me I could resubmit decided to represent me, and my book was acquired by Penguin Random House!

Karen Fine, DVM, author of NYT Bestseller The Other Family Doctor: A Veterinarian’s View of Love, Loss, Mortality and Mindfulness

Enhance Your Experience

Literary London | Literary New York

Add a pre- or post-voyage tour and delight in the histories of London and New York's most illustrious writers.

Each 3-night tour includes accomodation, two dinners and a lunch or tea, a show, and transfer to or from the ship.

Our 'Know The Business' experience in New York includes pitching to agents.

Your Itinerary

Before, During & After
  • At Sea
  • London
  • New York
  • Embarkation Day
  • Days At Sea
  • Special Events
  • Disembarkation Day
  • Add-Ons
  • Morning Sessions
  • Jane's Sessions
  • Allison's Sessions
  • Dinty's Sessions
  • Amy's Sessions
Depart Southamption
28th April 2024
Times Activity Hosted By Notes
1100-1300 Embarkation - Drop your baggage, check in and pass security at Southampton Cruise Terminal
1300-1700 Settle In & Muster - Find your stateroom, visit muster stations & enjoy afternoon tea
1700 Welcome Party Dinty, Jane & Allison Meet your fellow writers & retreat leaders; preview the coming week over cocktails & mocktails
1830-2000 Dinner Dinty, Jane & Allison "Smart attire" at our reserved tables in the Britannia Room
2000-late Enjoy Queen Mary 2 Cunard Enjoy live music, dancing, a show, a lounge or the casino...or stay on deck and watch the ocean roll by

Onboard Queen Mary 2
29th Apr - 4th May
Times Activity Hosted By Notes
0900-1000 Craft/Publishing Panel or Talk Jane, Allison &/or Dinty Start your morning with a talk: traditional, indie, literary & commercial publishing; finishing & marketing the book; writing craft & more
1015-1030 Morning Break Cunard Refill your coffee & chat with fellow writers
1030-1200 Small Group Workshops
& Craft Classes
Jane, Allison or Dinty Each day, join a small group focusing on writing craft, live-editing, or marketing & platform
1200-1330 Lunch Cunard Dine in low-key elegance with table service in the Britannia Room or enjoy casual buffet in the King's Court
1330-1800 Discover Queen Mary 2 Cunard Enjoy the gym, spa, live music, trivia quizzes & watercolor classes, or find a quiet corner to write
1800-1930 Dinner All Join our reserved tables in the Britannia Room for writer camaraderie & bring your travel companions
2000-Late Discover Queen Mary 2 Cunard Live music, dancing, cocktails or a show, your choice!

Welcome Cocktails & Mocktails

Join retreat leaders and fellow writers for complimentary cocktails and a welcome to the week.

Gala Dinners

Our voyage features two Gala evenings: a Black & White ball and another theme, usually Masquerade or Roaring 20s (we'll know in advance). Don your formal wear with a nod to the theme and enjoy an extra-special menu in the Britannia Room. After dinner, dance the night away to live music in the Queen's Room.

Reading Nights

We'll have a night of readings from the retreat leaders and a night of student readings.

Brooklyn Cruise Terminal
5th May 2024
Times Activity Notes
0600-0700 Early Bird Disembarkation Early flight? Eager to see New York? Carry your own baggage to be first off the ship.
0800-1100 Regular Disembarkation Cunard will provide a set disembarkation time. Leave your bags outside your stateroom the night before and claim them ashore.

Want to enhance your trip with extra literary days? Choose from our add-on offerings.

Literary London (April 25-28)

A pre-voyage tour with hotel and transfer to the ship, limited to ten participants.

Join Allison for a 3-day tour of Literary London. We’ll tour the British Library and the haunts and neighborhoods of noted London writers old and new. Take in a West End show and the astonishing Daunt’s bookstore, see Postman’s Park, and discover Allison’s secret corners of Covent Garden.


See the London tab for more info!

Literary New York (May 5-8)

A post-voyage tour with hotel and transfer from the ship, limited to ten participants.

Join Allison for a 3-day tour of Literary New York. We'll take an insider's tour of the New York Public Library, visit storied neighborhoods of writers past and see an incredible immersive show. Plus, meet noted literary agents and practice your pitch.


See the New York tab for more info!

One-on-one meetings

Add a personal meeting with Jane to discuss your writing or writing career ($165). Limited availability.

One on One Meetings with Dinty and Allison are now Sold Out.

Each morning, some or all of our teachers present a panel or talk on elements of writing craft and publication. Topics will be tailored to the group’s needs, and may include:

Negotiation Smarts:

Understanding publication conventions and contracts—how to protect yourself, and how to be a good partner in your career.

Write Faster:

Craft, technique and productivity hacks for getting out of your own way to get words on the page.

Fabulous First Pages:

The elements of voice, theme, quest and character must clearly show in your opening pages—learn what engages readers and pulls them into your world.

Writing Online:

Best practices for social media, Substack, blogging and newsletters—and how writing online deepens and improves your writing craft.

Pitch, Publish, Get Paid:

Getting your words into the world in literary journals and mass media. What makes a great pitch, who to pitch, and how to share published work to grow your profile.

An expert in the business of publishing, Jane will show you how to tailor your self-presentation to be ready for the world to take notice, build your writing career beyond books, and find, grow and nurture the audience of readers who need your work.

Strengthen your author website

Learn the 5 key elements for your homepage, plus the other pages you'll need either prior to, or after, publication. We'll look at some of the biggest design disasters that can happen (and how to remedy), plus what details really matter. Get guidance on first steps with your author website if you don't yet have one.

Better and more effective email newsletters

An email newsletter is an author's most powerful sales tool, yet too many writers aren't consistent with their newsletter or believe they have nothing to say until their book's on the market. Learn to develop a content schedule or structure that makes sense for you, plus how to start if you haven't yet.

Platform audit: identifying strengths and opportunities

Even if you don't think you have a platform, you do! We'll do a platform audit together, looking at your online and offline assets, then discuss your strengths and opportunities. Sure, there might be weaknesses, but your platform grows out of your natural skills and existing networks—not something you hate doing or are afraid to do! Introverts and extroverts alike can excel in platform building.

Build your business model

Book sales alone rarely pay the bills, and most well-established authors earn the bulk of their income from something else: freelancing, teaching, affiliate marketing, subscription newsletters and more. Learn what it means to develop your own unique business model and how to build a marketing funnel that supports it. (Don't be intimidated by "marketing funnel”—there's a cute diagram!)

Your book marketing copy

Whether it's for your back cover, online retailers, or your website: let's make your marketing copy better. Even if you have a traditional publisher who's responsible for your marketing copy, you'll need to condense it, expand it, and customize it in countless ways when you're actively marketing and promoting. Learn how to adapt your copy for the intended recipient, especially people in the media. We'll critique your copy together and discuss templates you can use for pitching.

As “the Unkind Editor,” Allison’s sharp line edits and knowledge of dramatic structure in story and scene have guided authors to success in traditional and indie publishing. She’ll focus on writing craft as it leads to publication—clearly showing your ideas, your voice and your story, while getting the work done and into the world.

Write Better Right Now: Voice & Paragraph

You’ve structured your story and know your facts—but how do you make your narrative sing on the page? Develop and refine your voice to take your writing to the next level. We’ll examine how to break rules to fulfill your own unique narrative style, how to create “high-context” communication with your reader, and how mimicking favorite writers improves our own work. Includes short in-class exercises.

Write Better Right Now: Sentence Craft

Go beyond grammar to discover how words and sentence structures deliver comedy, drama and meaning. Discover the difference between long sentences and run-ons, why metaphors beat similes, what the heck a modal verb is (and why they muddy prose), and 4 things to do NOW to improve your manuscript 25%—no matter how good a writer you already are. Includes short in-class exercises.

Queries, Pages & Getting an Agent

Querying an agent is intimidating—and yet they work for you! Sharpen your pitch, learn what belongs in your query (and what absolutely doesn't!) and where and how to find agents to share it with. We’ll also look at the elements of fabulous first pages, and what makes agents, editors (and readers!) read on.

Live-Editing: First Pages

We’ll project pages on the screen, giving writers a chance to see their work edited in real time. You’ll better understand the purpose and experience of editing, and become more able to identify issues in your own writing. We'll give feedback and suggested edits on volunteers' first pages, and add tips for everyone's writing.

Live-Editing: Synopses

Writing a synopsis is tough, but we need one to query agents and publishers—and the process of writing helps us reverse-engineer our story, fix plot holes, raise the stakes and strengthen beginnings and endings. With pages projected on the screen, we’ll examine structure and plot in synopses, revising our own work as we go.

A direct, honest and supportive teacher known for his ability to draw out meaning in memoir, Dinty W. Moore is known for inspiring teaching and his ability to teach craft with clarity. Focusing on story, characters and revision, Dinty’s sessions include prompts, exercises, and/or generative writing time. Each session stands alone; you can choose as many as you wish.

The Invisible Magnetic River: The Secret to Writing Compelling Fiction and Memoir

What is it that makes a fiction or memoir more than just a collection of scenes or observations, a compelling whole greater than the sum of its many parts? How do we allow our writing to open into something wide and powerful, reflecting a truth that is, as Langston Hughes writes, “older than the flow of human blood in human veins”? The answer is the Invisible Magnetic River of story. Locating the Invisible Magnetic River in your fiction or memoir is the best way of insuring that something primal and powerful is at stake behind the words. It is also a vital tool for revision. Bring your work-in-progress.

They Walk! They Talk! Secrets to Writing Engaging Characters & Vivid Dialogue

Characterization is always a challenge: How can we make the people we know feel as real and alive for readers as they do to us? We will examine the many ways in which people come to know other people and make judgments about them in real life, and how that translates directly to the page. We’ll also examine dialogue as a tool for creating lively and believable characters. Prompts and brief writing exercises will be included.

Write What You Don’t Know: How Curiosity Fuels Craft

The tired maxim “Write what you know” is familiar to anyone who has ever lifted a pencil. But that advice is far too limiting. The fuel that runs the engine of good writing is the curiosity of the writer, the process of thinking aloud on the page, uncovering what we didn’t know the morning we sat down to begin our memoir or novel. We will have prompts and writing exercises.

The Art of Revision: Knowing When to Revise, What to Revise, and How to Make Your Revisions Matter

Once we’ve given the story our best shot, once we’ve powered our way through an early draft or two, how do we take what we have created and use the powerful tools of revision to make the storytelling shine? Revision, many have said, is where the hardest part of writing begins, but this stage can also be the most rewarding and pleasurable. Successful revision means taking a step back and determining where to intervene. And when? And in what fashion? Bring your work-in-progress.

INCLUDED as one of your on-board options for small-group sessions, this workshop series will take you through expressing and articulating the idea in your head so that your book can be made real. Part 1 and Part 2 will both be offered twice in our week together; the information is sequential.

Whether you’re at the very beginning stage of a "great idea”—or several!—and don’t know where or how to start; in the drafting stage but have hit a block or don’t know what to do next; or have a complete, revised, and edited manuscript and are ready to seek agents or publishers, these sessions will get your work focused and ready to move forward.

Idea to Outline Part 1

  • Acquire a deep understanding of the Idea to Outline tool, leveraging it for your current and future book projects.
  • Develop the foundational pieces that will make your book resonate with readers and make you proud.
  • Receive next-day written feedback on your first draft of your Idea to Outline.

Idea to Outline Part 2

  • Dig deeper into the foundational pieces of your book
  • Revise your Idea to Outline
  • Receive written feedback on the second draft
  • Discuss “best next steps” for your writing and publishing process, to keep going with confidence
  • For nonfiction writers, discuss whether you need to write a book proposal sooner or later and how to use this tool as the foundation.

Have More Questions? Contact Us

  • Accomodation
  • Tours & Entertainment
  • Dining
  • Pricing

Literary London includes three nights of accomodation & transfer from London to Southampton on Embarkation Day.

Radisson Blu Edwardian Grafton

In London's buzzing district of Fitzrovia, Radisson Blu Edwardian, Grafton offers luxury, boutique accommodation on Tottenham Court Road. The stylish hotel has a modern restaurant and free WiFi. The sumptuous rooms are furnished with custom-made wall coverings and designer Italian chairs. All rooms have a Sicilian marble bathroom with complimentary premium skincare brand REN toiletries, Egyptian cotton bed linen and each features air conditioning. A buffet style breakfast (included) is available in the morning.

Before 1930 Fitzrovia was a nameless section of the West End, until a bright spark named the area after the iconic Fitzroy Tavern on Charlotte Street. Virginia Woolf, Charles Dickens, and George Orwell are just a few of the literary giants that ordered their favourite tipple in the historic pub, forever giving this area a touch of the bohemian.

Our Literary London adventure includes...

London Literary Tour

There’s no better way to combine our passions than a guided tour of London’s bookshops, reading rooms, and haunts of authors old and new. Our private tour will suit our tastes, and finish with afternoon tea.

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre

Explore Shakespeare's work and the playhouse for which he wrote. We'll see half a performance, and you'll understand why!

London's West End

The vibrant cultural hub of spectacular shopping streets, top-notch restaurants and the world-famous theatre district. We'll take in Allison's favorite West End Show--you'll leave laughing.

On Your Own

Not up for a group tour? We recommend these literary landmarks:

  • Daunt Books in Marylebone.
  • 221B Baker Street
  • The Wellcome Collection Reading Room
  • The British Library
  • The Word On The Water Canal Boat Bookshop
  • Bloomsbury & The Charles Dickens Museum
  • The London Review Bookshop
  • Foyles
  • Cecil Court
  • Hatchards

Literary London includes daily breakfast, one afternoon tea and two dinners.

Welcome Dinner

Enjoy traditional cooking techniques and contemporary flavours in our private dining room.

Afternoon Tea @ Mariage Freres, Covent Garden.

The Mariage Frères flagship houses the largest tea wall in the world where you can shop from a selection of 1,000 teas and tea accessories, a tea museum bursting with history, refinement and heritage and afternoon tea served with an assortment of decadent French tea-infused pastries all made in-house.

Brasserie Zédel

Our Theatre Night Dinner takes place at the iconic Brasserie Zedel, located in the heart of Piccadilly. Step down the secret corridor to this lively underground brasserie with traditional French food and Art Noveau decor.

April 25-28, experience Literary London (limit 10 participants):

  • Three nights accomodation at the Radisson Blu Edwardian, Grafton in Fitzrovia
  • Our immersive London Literary Tour
  • Shakespeare's Globe Theatre
  • A West End Show
  • Welcome Dinner
  • Afternoon Tea @ Mariage Freres, Covent Garden
  • Theatre Night Dinner in the West End

All for just...


Have More Questions? Contact Us

  • Accomodation
  • Tours & Entertainment
  • Dining
  • Pricing

Literary New York includes three nights of accomodation & transfer from Brooklyn Cruise Terminal to our hotel on Disembarkation Day.

Four-Star Hotel

We'll stay in Greenwich Village, storied literary haunt of writers of the 1920s, 30s and 40s. Relax in the well-appointed lobby or enjoy a nightcap at the bar.

Our Literary New York adventure includes...

New York Literary Tour

Enjoy a private tour of the hidden corners of Greenwich Village, with tales from authors gone and still present. We'll finish with a light lunch.

Agent Advice

Meet noted literary agents who'll give the inside scoop on what it really takes to get published, and practice your pitch. We'll have a leisurely Q&A with three top agents. You'll also get to practice your pitch with Allison in advance!

Off-Broadway Show

Discover the wild world of immersive theatre. Thick with literary references and Hitchcockian twists, this choose-your-own-adventure experience is like no other show. Allison's seen it four times from inside and out, and can't wait to share it with you!

Literary New York includes daily breakfasts and two dinners.

Welcome Dinner

Fresh off the ship, enjoy a casual dinner with publishing talk in our private dining room.

Farewell Dinner

Our last night together, we'll share conversation and plans for our books.

May 5-8, experience Literary New York (limit 10 participants):

  • Accomodation at a 4-Star Hotel in Greenwich Village
  • Our immersive New York Literary Tour
  • Meet-Ups with Literary Agents
  • An Off-Broadway Show
  • Welcome & Farewell Dinners

All for just...


Have More Questions? Contact Us

Get On Board
Craft & Publishing Voyage
April 28-May 5, 2024


$ 1175


$ 1457

per person double occupancy

  • Register & pay your event fee
  • From our travel coordinator, choose your Stateroom: Inside, Seaview or Balcony
  • Take advantage of Cunard's discount on the airline of your choice (optional)
  • Choose to add additional hotel nights in NYC or London (optional)
  • Add on Literary London, Literary New York or a one-on-one consult (optional)
  • Join the pre-event Zoom to get to know your fellow writers
  • See you onboard!

Not ready yet? Fill out the contact form below to join our mailing list.

Frequently Asked Questions

You probably have a few

Is there a dress code?

Check out Cunard’s “what to pack” guide.

After crossing twice, Allison has found she’s comfortable in casual clothing during the day (yoga pants, easy linen pants, nice t-shirts or sweaters) and “smart dress” for dinner (dressy pants and top, cocktail dress, collared shirt with dress pants.) There will be passengers in shorts during the day and passengers in fancier dresses and suits at dinner. Cunard advises no ripped jeans, and no jeans/khakis at dinner.

During our Transatlantic crossing, there two Gala nights for the entire ship. The first is always a Black and White Ball and the second will be a regular formal night that may be a Masquerade or a 1920s theme. We’ll let you know well in advance! Evening dress on those nights ranges from cocktail dresses and suit and tie all the way to ballgowns with gloves and black or white tie. Find the level of formality that’s fun for YOU, and enjoy checking out your fellow passengers’ finery!

Staterooms have outlets for UK and US plugs.

You can bring a curling iron/flatiron. Your stateroom will have a blowdryer. Other heat-generating appliances are not recommended as they may overload and break.

There is a complimentary launderette (soap included!) on each passenger deck and those have a professional iron and ironing board. There is also a retractable clothesline in the shower, so you can steam your clothes with the hot shower water.

Onboard laundry and drycleaning services are available for an extra charge.

The internet is slow and inconsistent but you’ll be able to send and receive email, check social media, even watch YouTube. The mild inconvenience of ship-speed internet is just enough to remind us we’d rather be writing! Cunard's internet package prices are here. If you’re sharing a room, you can both use the same package, just not at the same time unless you pay to add another device.

We strongly recommend you don’t use your phone. Even if you have reception through a marine satellite, it will be very expensive. Put your phone in Airplane mode when we sail away from Southampton.

Heck yeah! The maximum number on a team is 6, so we'll have a few teams!

What can I expect from a Transatlantic crossing?

Unlike a typical “cruise,” the Queen Mary 2 makes a direct passage from Europe to America. There are no stops or ports, recalling bygone days before air travel took over.

While yes, you can find bingo, karaoke and a casino if you enjoy them, Cunard focuses on special guest lectures, dancing, live music, trivia quizzes, shipwide scavenger hunts, the Planetarium, and a relaxed, leisurely vibe.

Sorry, no wet t-shirt contest.

Nope! The ship carries up to 2,620 passengers so most people on the ship will be regular passengers, not part of our group. Consider them your future readers!

We have scheduled events from 9AM-12PM daily. A detailed schedule will be provided for your crossing. You'll have plenty of time to enjoy the rest of the ship’s amenities, restaurants, activities, and entertainment with newfound writing friends—and of course, plenty of time to write.

One of our most popular activities, projecting pages on the screen as we discuss them gives writers a chance to see their work edited in real time. You’ll better understand the purpose and experience of editing, and become more able to identify issues in your own writing.

You can add a 30-minute one-on-one meeting to discuss your writing or writing career. Costs start from $125 and a limited number are available. You’ll see this option when you register for the event.

How do I Join?

  1. Pay your Event Fee and register here.

  2. Contact our travel agent Tom at Ahoy Vintage Cruises to choose your stateroom ($1457-$2027 per person, based on double occupancy, includes port charges & taxes). He’ll help you choose inside, seaview or sheltered balcony and your location on the ship. Tom can also arrange your lodging before or after the voyage, and book your airfare on the airline of your choice with Cunard's discount.

  3. Email with your legal name(s) and whether you prefer Inside, Seaview or Sheltered Balcony and he will reply with all the details for your consideration.

  4. You can also call Tom at +1-214-761-1968. You can hold your cabin for 48 hours to consider your decision then pay your deposit.

  5. Event fee payments due February 1; Cunard may sell out of cabins sooner.

We’ll discuss commercial and literary fiction, nonfiction, memoir and essays. If you’re writing a business book or self-help, writing craft is still relevant—and audience and platform even more so!

  • You DON'T need a degree in writing (or anything else!).
  • You DON'T need previous publication credits.
  • You DON’T need a manuscript in progress (but bring it to work on if you have one!)
  • We will do generative writing and work on existing pages if you have them.
  • You're not reading others' work in advance, so the experience level of your fellow writers isn't a big factor in your retreat.

A non-writing travel partner pays an event fee of $495 plus their cabin fare. They take part in our opening and closing parties, join us at group meals, and receive our group discount on cabin fare.

If your non-writing travel partner is coming to Literary London or Literary New York, please contact us for a special payment link.

To share a cabin with another writer, please register separately—there will be a place in the registration to give your roommate’s name.

Yes! Singles pay a bit less than double-occupancy. Cabin fares range from $2455-$3452.

Need a roommate? Let Allison know and she’ll invite you to our private Facebook group where you can share your bedtime/morning preferences and make a new writing friend.

No, definitely do not make this mistake!

In order to participate in our private writing events and special events you must book directly through Tom at Ahoy Vintage Cruises. You get the advantage of a special group booking rate for passage on the ship as well as our expert teachers for the week.

Will I Need a Visa?

US and Canadian citizens do not need a visa for the UK or European Union countries.

We strongly, strongly recommend you plan to arrive in the UK the day before your cruise, to allow for any flight delays, lost luggage, etc. You may also wish to explore London—you can book your own hotel, or book through Tom at Ahoy Vintage Cruises when you book your cabin.

You can fly out of New York on Disembarkation Day, May 5th. Don’t book a flight before 1PM. Allow yourself at least 4 hours to disembark and travel to JFK/LGA/Newark. Disembarkation can be as early as 7AM if you carry your own luggage; otherwise you’ll disembark between 9-11AM.

Transfers to and from the ship can be booked at additional cost through Tom at Ahoy Vintage Cruises.

Participants who add on Literary London or Literary New York will have a ship transfer included.

If you prefer to take the train, book a bus ticket, or use Uber or a private car in the UK or New York, those are all pretty easy options! Ask Allison if you have questions about a particular type of transfer—she’s done them all.

Please check your passport expiration date. Your Passport must be valid for at least 6 months past your departure date for the last country you visit—so at least until mid-November 2024. If it’s sooner than that, start the renewal process now!

Yes! Tom at Ahoy Vintage Cruises can help you use the Cunard discount on most airlines. Whether you book through Tom or on your own, you'll fly from home to London Heathrow or London Gatwick, then from New York JFK or LaGuardia to home.

What kinds of health and safety measures will there be?

Cunard prioritizes safety. Unlike hotels and regular public spaces, cruise ships have already had norovirus cleaning procedures in place for years. That already put the cruise industry far ahead of land-based public spaces in the protection against Covid-19.

Since the pandemic began, all guests and crew are required to follow enhanced health and well-being measures developed with guidance from global medical and public health experts and scientists and in close coordination with UK and US government agencies.

Safety protocols include:

  • Every area of the ship is rigorously and regularly cleaned and disinfected
  • Hand-sanitizing stations in all public spaces
  • Enhanced on-board ventilation systems provide improved filtration and increased fresh air on board
  • Everyone on board must follow the latest guidance regarding the use of face-coverings and social distancing (specifics to be determined nearer to the time of your scheduled crossing)
  • Cunard uses pre-booking and boarding health screening, and approved standards for the service of food and drink, entertainment and experiences on board and on shore. Check the latest updates from Cunard.

Allison, Dinty and Jane are fully vaccinated. All participants must provide proof of COVID vaccination.

If Cunard deems it unsafe to travel, all cruise dates will be rescheduled and we will be in touch with you to coordinate the new date. Cunard generally offers a choice of a full refund or a Future Cruise Credit. The Future Cruise Credit may range from 100% to 125% of the value paid. The choice will be up to you.

The Queen Mary 2 is specifically designed to handle the potentially rough seas of the North Atlantic, but there can sometimes be some rolling. If you're prone to motion sickness, bring medication to ensure a comfortable voyage (Dramamine, etc). If you forget to bring it and are feeling unwell, medication is available at the Purser’s desk in the main lobby.

We are strongly committed to accessible retreats, which is why we’re on a ship! Elevators, smooth floors, accessible rooms and space and entertainment for your partner or caregiver are all present. Staff are available to carry baggage. If you have mobility concerns, let us know.

Jane, Allison and Dinty have (between them) 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!

Cunard will joyfully accomodate your dietary needs. Every menu includes vegan and vegetarian options; food ingredients like pork and shellfish are clearly labeled. The buffet has a separate gluten-free section. Please let Tom know when you book your cabin.

What’s included in the booking? What’s not included?


  • Morning talks & panels
  • Small-group breakout sessions
  • Opening cocktail/mocktail party
  • Reading night
  • Breakfast, lunch, dinner, afternoon tea, room service
  • Gym
  • Laundry facilities
  • Port charges & taxes


  • Alcohol/drinks packages
  • Specialty restaurants
  • Spa services
  • Laundry/dry-cleaning services
  • Cunard standard gratuities ($101)
  • Airport transfers
  • Airfare from your home to the UK and New York to your home.

If you’re new to cruising, you will be delighted to learn that all of the meals in the main dining room (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) as well as the buffet and room service are completely included in your booking. Cunard’s afternoon tea, lectures, shows, and many other activities are also included.

On the ship, you will also have the opportunity to visit the specialty restaurants, spas, casino, and other activities and services, which will be clearly noted if they have an extra charge. You are under no obligation to spend any additional money beyond your booking.

Cunard charges a per-person, per-day gratuities fee that is divided among the crew. If you wish to reward exemplary service from your cabin steward or waiters feel free to tip them in cash.

Tom can also arrange your transfer to the ship, and additional hotel nights before or after the voyage.

Please note that your primary booking does not include tours or events before or after the crossing unless you add on Literary London or Literary New York.

Literary London & Literary New York


  • 3 nights accomodation
  • Tours
  • Show tickets
  • 2 dinners
  • 1 lunch or afternoon tea
  • Tips for drivers and guides
  • Transportation to & between tours/events
  • Transportation from London to the ship OR from the ship to our hotel in New York
  • (NYC only) Agent pitch workshop


  • Alcohol/cocktails
  • Additional meals
  • Laundry services
  • Airport transfers
  • Airfare from your home to the UK and New York to your home.

Rebirth Your Book accepts Venmo, Zelle, Canadian e-transfers, US checks, PayPal and credit cards via PayPal. Paying your event fee reserves your place.

Ahoy Vintage Cruises accepts credit cards. The charge will show as Cunard on your statement. You’ll pay a deposit upon booking and Tom will familiarize you with Cunard’s payment schedule.

Yes! Singles pay a bit less than double-occupancy. Cabin fares range from $2455-$3452.

Need a roommate? Let Allison know and she’ll invite you to our private Facebook group where you can share your bedtime/morning preferences and make a new writing friend.

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.

For your ship fare, a passenger cancellation, or a single name change, can be made outside of the penalty period. Once the penalty period comes into effect, there are penalties for cancelations and name changes. The cancellation schedule will be provided before you make your deposit. Travel Cancellation/Medical insurance can be purchased to cover such fees to protect the passenger from monetary loss—ask Tom when you book.

If we can fill your place from the waiting list, your event fee can be transferred to another Rebirth Your Book retreat or event, after a $350 administrative fee.

Have another question? Want to talk payment plan,
travel concerns or health & safety? contact us

0 Miles
0 Writers
0 Days
0 Locations
0 Experts
0 Experience


Writing around the world