The Bishop’s Ranch

We are on sabbatical at the moment. We’ll keep you posted when the retreats resume.

The Bishop’s Ranch
Healdsburg, California

Phyllis Theroux is taking her popular Politics & Prose seminar, “How To Keep A Journal You Won’t Throw Out” on the road. Keeping a journal is like fishing. It takes time for your thoughts to swim to the surface. For five luxuriously indolent days at the Bishop’s Ranch in Sonoma County, California you will have that time – to read, reflect, and watch as your thoughts take shape in your mind. Sink into a chair, read a book uninterrupted, rise for a delicious meal, go for a walk, take a nap, gather together for a glass of wine with the other participants before supper. And write in your journal.

After breakfast we meet in the dining room of the main ranch house which will be ours exclusively while we are there, for a daily morning session. Theroux will share selections from some of the famous diarists who have inspired her. We’ll take part in some simple exercises to focus the eye and attention, listen to music, and explore various ways in to hear your own thoughts more clearly. Participants will be invited to share their journal entries with others. Not required reading, but strongly suggested, is Christian McEwan’s World Enough & Time: On Creavitity and Slowing Down. We will be discussing parts of it every day.

This is not just a seminar for writers although most writers consider a journal necessary for their work.  . It is for anyone who sees the value of keeping a record of his or her life  and wants to learn how to keep it better.  Phyllis Theroux will share some of the rules she has discovered that make this easier to do.

You will be surprised by the power of your own words, by the way they strengthen, enlighten and nourish you, like a friend who knows you better than all the others, who always has your best interests at heart. There are rules that make journal keeping a pleasure.  But the most important one is Rule Number l:    keep a journal for the same reason you keep a friend – because life is better when you do.