Weeklong Writers Workshop from Sep 9

12 Feb 2021

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Koh Phangan Hosts Weeklong Writers Workshop at The Sanctuary

by Phanganist.


Koh Phangan is a mecca for all manner of creative spirits. New music venues and projects pop up regularly around the island. Painters, sculptors, dancers gain inspiration from our gorgeous scenery, food and local culture. From the 9th through the 15th of September, lovers of the written word will have their time as local writer Brian Gruber and acclaimed author and coach Kate Evans host a retreat for beginning and experienced writers called “Write Your Story in Paradise.” The workshop, at Haad Tien’s Sanctuary resort, will provide morning instruction and creative exercises, with afternoon coaching and plenty of time for writing. After dinner, members of the weeklong community will have the opportunity to share their work and react to the creative output of their neighbors.

“The Sanctuary is where I wrote my first book,” shares Gruber, a resident of Sri Thanu, who moved here after traveling around the world for his book on the aftereffects of U.S. military interventions, WAR: The Afterparty. “I intended to get in a few solid chapters but stayed a month and completed a first draft. It’s a unique contained space for creativity, whether pounding out pages in seclusion or enjoying the social atmosphere of Haad Tien and neighboring WhyNam and Haad Yuan.” Phanganist recently interviewed Brian on his writing experiences on the island. Check it out at https://phanganist.com/koh-phangan-artist-community-article/brian-gruber...

Koh Phangan residents are eligible for a $200 discount and students are invited to apply for a scholarship. Just contact Brian at the event’s Facebook page or check out the Phanganist listing here below.


Here is some detail on the workshop leaders:


Kate Evans is the author of "Call It Wonder: An Odyssey of Love, Sex, Spirit, and Travel," which won “Best Memoir” at the 2016 Bi Book Awards, where she was also named “Writer of the Year.” Her other books include two novels, a collection of poems, and a book about teachers. Her essays, stories, and poems have appeared in more than fifty publications. She holds a PhD in Education and an MFA in Creative Writing. A former writing and literature teacher at U.C. Santa Cruz, San Jose State University and SCIC/Guangxi University in China, she now serves as a writing coach. Half the year she lives in Mexico, and half the year she travels. She blogs at Living the Journey. Visit her website at kateevanswriter.com.

Brian Gruber began his media career as the first marketing director of C-SPAN, where he hosted national call-in shows with politically prominent guests such as Cesar Chavez, Nancy Pelosi and John McCain. He founded FORA.tv, which brought the world's leading public forums (Chautauqua, New York Public Library, Aspen Ideas Festival) to the web, conducting interviews with writers and public intellectuals such as Norman Mailer, Malcolm Gladwell, Christopher Hitchens and Robert MacNeil. He also founded ShowGo.tv, an automated platform livestreaming the world's elite jazz clubs. He is the author of two books, "Dauphin, Dorian & Dead" and "WAR: The Afterparty," a Kickstarter-funded global tour of the scenes of the last half century of U.S. military interventions. Visit his website at grubermedia.com.

Last update from Brian Gruber;

We are VERY excited to welcome you. 

Reminder: there is no ATM at the resort or beach (12-minute boat ride to Haad Rin which is full of ATM's) and the Sanctuary is cash-only. So, bring Thai baht for lunches, dinners, yoga, spa, miscellaneous expenses. 

Brian Gruber phone again is +66-06-3395-2325. He will be watching Facebook, Skype (bgruber), LINE, WhatsApp, texts, etc so ping him for any and all questions. Below is our schedule. 


Saturday, September 9:
Welcome Reception 4-6 p.m. at Gill’s House. Dinner (6-7:30), no-host at the Sanctuary restaurant

Sunday-Thursday September 10-14
Breakfast (8-9 a.m.): all breakfasts are hosted at the Sanctuary restaurant in our cordoned-off area. 

Morning Session (9:30-12:30) with snack break at 11 a.m. at Gill’s House

Lunch (not hosted; any time after 12:30)*

Afternoons; Writing time alone or in groups, 1:1 or small-group coaching sessions with Kate or Brian (by sign-up), conversations with other writers, yoga, group meditation, steam room, swimming, beach time, other resort activities

Dinner (not hosted; any time before 7 p.m.)* Note: Our last evening, Thursday September 14, will be a hosted dinner for our final celebration.

Evening sessions (7-9 p.m.) at Gill’s House. 

  • Evening #2 (Sunday): Reading by Brian and Kate, with Q&A and discussion.
  • Evening #3-5 (Monday-Wednesday): Reading Circle and/or Group Writing at Gill’s House. Reading Circle is your opportunity to read aloud some of your writing if you choose. Listeners can respond with a) the most memorable aspects/parts that have the most energy, and b) questions the piece raised. If you want some other type of feedback, you can request it. Or, if you want no feedback, we can just sit back and enjoy what you share. If no one wants to read, or if we have extra time, we will group-write to a prompt.
  • FINAL CELEBRATION Evening #6 (Thursday): Meet at 6 p.m. at the Sanctuary Restaurant. Together we will engage in a special ritual then have a final, hosted meal together. Also this evening is the Sanctuary’s Open Mic night.

Friday September 15:
Leave Taking
Breakfast (8-9 a.m.)
Morning at Gill’s House starting at 9:30 a.m.: Evaluations, Group Discussion, and Final Leave Taking event at Gill’s house. You will be invited to share what you have learned and what you have created as well as how this week will reset your creative path.


Koh Phangan residents are eligible for a $200 discount and students are invited to apply for a scholarship. Just contact Brian at the event’s Facebook page or fill in your name and email here:


Real Estate Board

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