The Writers Retreat 1.0 (Yes, I can call it that because I have already started working on the next one, Writers Retreat 2.0) was a success. I would like to use this moment to thank all the people who helped me in making it a success, gave me an opportunity to try this out and guided me during the process.
As mentioned earlier, the reason of doing this event was to tap into a niche of writers from various backgrounds and present Grassroutes villages as ideal getaways for writers and readers. The retreat hosted a disparate group of 10 writers, creative heads, screenplay writers, copywriters, bloggers etc. The common ground however was the fact they all have stories to tell and have an intimate relationship with words that they were too shy to confess in front of the world. We witnessed amazing content and some brilliant ideas for books. Dr. Michael Burns, with his experience and technique was able to pull out the best from these people. Every single person returned with a smile and on a common note “I wish this retreat never ends”. I was inebriated by the outcome of the retreat. Here are some of the feedback we received…
“Tall Tales and Grassroutes, thank you for being the guiding lights that have helped me and many other closeted/aspiring writers find their inner-calling.” – Priya Ramanathan, Screenplay Writer
“A short story called “The Cocatoucan; or, Great Aunt Willoughby” by E. Nesbit stars a little girl who, quite by accident, gets on the wrong bus which takes her to a land of whimsy and magic. I’ve always wondered what that was like. Now I know. The village of Purushwadi, sitting under the shade of trees, writing away to our heart’s content while surrounded by people who understood you in a way few do–these are memories not easily forgotten.” – Akshay Gajria, Creative Head
“As someone who has been blogging and writing for a while now, I’ve gotten asked whether I ever undertook a course in Creative Writing. I have never been sure whether it was implied that I should! But I have felt that it might just help to have some insight into what it takes to write THAT story.Turns out, the Universe had been eavesdropping as my thoughts ran amok and I heard about The Writers Retreat being brought together by Tall Tales Storytelling and Grassroutes in November 2015. Long story short, that weekend spent away from the din of the city in not-so-faraway Purushwadi (yes, where the fireflies light up the night sky in June) in some real good company (because writing can get lonely), learning how to better my craft with the tools I didn’t know as much about was the best investment I could have made. Not just in myself, but even in my writing!” – Elita Almeida (Nomadic Thunker), Travel blogger.
“I have been, for a while, looking for an inspiration, the kind that would help me break the barriers of my mind and compel me to bleed; to freely surge and ooze out on sheets of paper without restraint, and bring them to life in the form of stories waiting to be told. For years now, blood reached my finger-tips and clotted, drying out, managing to stain the sheet only slightly, but never enough to ink it red. Now, the sheets have begun to bleed themselves, and even before I realized new worlds have come alive. Worlds drenched in passion, strong enough to fuel the fire within; and feed the ever hungry, ever wondering mind, have worded their existence in print. Tall tales and Grassroutes retreat has, in many ways, tamed the mind to go wild, and set it free to explore its beastly side. I say ‘tame’ with a purpose, for its only here I realized that even a free mind requires to be disciplined.This retreat is for those who are in search for that joy, that bliss that cannot be disturbed by the worry of judgement. In those two days, in that distant unknown, unfamiliar land, with nine unfamiliar people, i found the comfort of belonging. ‘Home-coming’ as I would like to call it! I thank you from the core of my heart.” – Alisha Parekh, TFI alumni, Entrepreneur, Writer.
So, in the past 4 months that I have worked with Grassroutes, I have irrevocably fallen in love with these villages. The Writers Retreat and all the other events that I will be working on are a way to let others know about these places. I wish to make people fall in love with a place, a culture, an initiative, a people and most importantly a dream.