A Writer?s Summit in Northern Italy

with author and Book Mentor Ericka Lutz


June 16-23, 2019

Piedmont, Italy



Join Ericka Lutz in the foothills of the Northern Italian Alps for a transformative 7-night retreat/writing workshop.


{ retreat ? reset ? renew }


In RE:TREAT VILLA EMILIA, a small group of experienced fiction and memoir authors will gather to delve deeply into their works-in-progress, get one-on-one manuscript consultations, discuss process and craft, nourish the body with onsite yoga, enjoy home-cooked country dinners and excellent local wines, and write, write, write…? all in a beautiful villa in a tiny Italian village.











Most ?destination? retreats and workshops are geared to beginners. They focus on gaining confidence and inspiration, or teach beginning craft issues. You have different needs; you?ve done this before (congratulations!) but that doesn?t mean writing feels easy, technically or emotionally.

RE:TREAT VILLA EMILIA is the retreat experience you crave. Join us for a deep-dive adventure.

Refill and restore yourself. Take the time you need, get the support and the feedback you deserve as you work on your current book ? or start a new one.


{ recharge ? refresh ? recommit }


Unhook in real Northern Italy: old stone walls and cracked terrazzo tiles, forgotten corners, risotto from the source, goat cheese from a mountainside farm, outdoor market, old characters playing cards in a caf? just off the village square…

At RE:TREAT VILLA EMILIA, you?ll break your isolation, write and relax, connect with colleagues, focus your path, and clear the way for this book to emerge.

You?ll come away with a realigned relationship to your book-in-progress, new energy, and shining, olive-oil infused pages.

{ restore ? resist ? risotto }




  • Seven nights of accommodations at the Villa Emilia (see details below)
  • Transportation via minivan from Milan airport? ? and back
  • Delicious regional meals prepared onsite, salad from the garden, local wines
  • Lots of writing time
  • Group check-ins
  • Twice daily onsite yoga sessions with certified yoga instructor
  • Craft/process workshops with Ericka
  • Guided free-write sessions
  • Work spaces throughout the villa grounds and time to write, ponder, refill
  • Individual manuscript feedback session with Ericka (up to 20 pages; submitted by May 1, 2019 – optional)
  • Excursions (optional and TBD): culinary walking tour of historic Biella with a guided tour of the La Marmora museum, a tour of Sanctuary Oropa + dinner at Castle Montecavallo; hike to local agriturismo for a ?slow food? lunch
  • Friday night candlelight dinner with our hosts Mikelle and Simone
  • Saturday night celebratory reading and dancing on the terrace
  • Individual closing focus session with Ericka
  • Departing with a work plan and a new relationship with your book

{ resist ? retreat ? reboot }

Add-ons: Hiking in the alps, massages, private yoga sessions, bungie jumping(!), castles, medieval villages, risotto cooking class, gardening? and more!



{ Retreat = Re (to do it again) + Treat (to be good to yourself). RE:TREAT yourself. }



7:30am? Meditation/yoga (or sleep in!)
7:30am? Enjoy coffee and breakfast at your own pace.
9:00am? Guided free-write session or craft workshop
10:00am? Writing session/consultation with Ericka
12:30pm? Lunch at the villa at your leisure, or explore our small village
2:30pm? Writing session/consultation with Ericka
6:00pm? Yoga stretch and refresh
6:30pm? A glass of wine and check-in gathering
8:00pm? Group dinner at Villa Emilia


  • Individual consultations and manuscript review sessions with Ericka will be scheduled on arrival.
  • Excursion days TBD.
  • In Italy, many shops close after lunch for the riposo, or rest period, and re-open in the early afternoon.
  • We’ll have opportunities to sample the regional cuisine and wine in local restaurants, and shop throughout the region.



{ Refresh: Lunch at Villa Emilia: freshly husked peas with Pecorino Sardo, roasted red and yellow bell peppers with anchovy sauce, cold octopus, red potato and basil salad? or torta salata and toasted walnuts, local goat cheeses, + fig jam… }



About Our Village

We will live and work in a small village located in northwestern Italy, in the Piedmont region, in the foothills of the alps. You?ll be walking in the hills just being here! Stroll in the woods or launch into a serious Alpine trek right from the villa door, and drink pure mountain water from stone fountains along the way. It?s a 40 minute hike to a local agriturismo. The historic town of Biella is a 30-40 minute drive/bus ride.


{ Refill. Dinner at Villa Emilia: bollito misto with salsa verde and mostarda, tortellini in broth, salad, wine. }


About Our Accommodations at Villa Emilia

For the 2019 session, my longtime friend Mikelle and her Italian husband Simone will open their beautiful private villa for us to live and work. Mikelle is a noted fine-arts photographer and the founder of Associazione Casa Regis, a local non-profit dedicated to promoting culture and contemporary art. (Note: Villa Emilia has no disabled access, and there are many stairs.)



The base charge of $2,895 includes 7 nights lodging, most meals, transportation from the Milan airport to Villa Emilia (and return), semi-private room, space to write, yoga, group excursions, and all consultation and group activities. Just get to the Milan airport; we’ll take you from there. The base charge does not include airfare, add-on activities, or the upcharge for a private room (see accommodation descriptions below).


Bedroom Choices at the Villa Emilia
(Assigned on a first-come reservation basis)










La Perla (1 twin), shared bathroom across hall; upcharge of $350. Inclusive RE:TREAT in La Perla: $3,245













La Principessa (2 twins), opens to a balcony/terrace at each door-window. Shared bathroom across the hall. Inclusive RE:TREAT in La Principessa per occupant: $2,895














Il Botanico (1 double), with private bathroom. Il Botanico has an upcharge of $500 for single occupancy. Inclusive RE:TREAT in Il Botanico for one person: $3,395; Il Botanico per person, double occupancy: $2,895
















Il Giardino (1 double/2 twins), simple room, patio/pine tree view, bathroom. Il Giardino has an upcharge of $200 for single occupancy. Inclusive RE:TREAT in Il Giardino for one person: $2,995; Il Giardino per person, double occupancy: $2,795


Ericka has been of tremendous help to me as I revise my second novel. Her feedback and insights are right on target and inspirational. I also appreciate the supportive way she gives constructive criticism. I have recommended her to other writers without hesitation.
? Wendy Tokunaga,
Love in Translation


About Your Retreat Leader Ericka Lutz

Ericka is the award-winning author of eight books, including the novel The Edge of Maybe (Last Light Studio Press). Her essays and short stories are widely anthologized. She?s taught writing at UC Berkeley and privately for over 20 years, and has edited and coached writers since 1992. She?s also taught writing in Russia, Hungary, and Peru. She?s passionate about travel, great food, and working with amazing writers. This retreat offers her all three!


photo credit: Anne Hamersky Photographer


“Sometimes it flows. Sometimes it’s hitting your thumb with a hammer, again and again. Some days it happens sideways, in the cracks of living, between breaths. Some days it’s better to just hang it up and go to the beach. Today, it’s a slow climb up the mountain at altitude (but the wild flowers are in bloom).?? ? Ericka Lutz


  • Registration opens September 15, 2018
  • EARLY BIRD discount of $250 if you book by December 1, 2018
  • There will be a maximum number of six participants in 2019.
  • A deposit of $750 books your place on the trip. Deposits are not refundable.
  • Balance is due May 1, 2019.
  • You may make payments via PayPal or personal check.

It all begins with a free Connection Call

Let’s talk! I’m adamant that everyone gets the most from this experience. If I feel we are good fit for each other, I?ll send you payment instructions.

I?m SO excited to hear from you and answer your questions! Let?s GO TO ITALY and WRITE!???? xo ? Ericka