Welcome to Start or Finish Your Damn Book in Tuscany, 2020!

                    “Creativity is a wild mind and a disciplined eye."  

                                                                                                              ~Dorothy Parker                                                                                                    

     How long have you been telling everyone that you were going to write a  book-- or that you’d finished your manuscript? Be honest.
    So,  what a thrilling relief to finally tell friends and family what you're  doing for the New Year. Imagine saying,

 "I'm going to Tuscany this spring to  write my book in a medieval village where one of our retreat leaders lives in a refurbished parochial house that is attached to a Knight's Templar church built in the 1100's!” 

     Congratulations for deciding to start or finish that damn book that you’ve been talking  about forever.
    We’ve chosen the perfect place: Arcidosso, in the shadow of Monte Amiata in southern Tuscany. It is re-known for its best preserved 9th century castle in all of Europe, and  known by spiritualists everywhere to be a center of spirituality. (There is a Tibetan Buddhist Temple here as well as an old commune site for the followers of Davide Lazzarati.) This magical place inspires  writers like you with its unique history, where every stone in every building has a story to tell; don't forget the amazing wines, food, and Italian hospitality that is unequaled in the world.
    Your book will be as magical and unique as the village that helped you Start or Finish Your Damn Book!

Ci Vediamo a Presto! See you soon!
Michele True and Lore Raymond
Writing Sisters & Co-founders, Eat, Pray, Write 

Jump to Registration!

Benvenuti to Arcidosso, Tuscany * April 18-25, 2020!

Program Schedule


Start or Finish Your Damn Book!
Intentionally designed with attention to detail, a dynamic program schedule is offered to: 

  • Ensure a balance between structured and free time
  • Provide experiential activities that engage the hands, head, heart, and soul
  • Write in interesting and inspiring inside and outside spaces
  • Work alone and in small groups
  • Enjoy the magic and mystery of the "Real Italy" found in Arcidosso!

What's Included?


Our personal guarantee that this retreat offers experiences of the “Real Italy” for personal and professional transformation.
Historic, Family-Owned Accommodations, Writing Workshops, and Meals to Include:

  • 8 days/7 nights stay in Arcidosso, a medieval, hilltop village in southern Tuscany
  • Lodging choices in three comfortable locations--only minutes walking distance from one another
  • Choice of room types with single or shared rooms available
  •  Meals included: 7 x  continental breakfasts / 7 x lunches / 4 x dinners 

Who's Invited?


Any woman who…

  • Deserves a once-in-a-lifetime, cultural experience that is solely focused on starting or finished a book project
  • Is Driven to Start or Finish Your Damn Book—you don’t have to be a professional or previously-published to join us
  • Appreciates being in a community of like-minded, soul-full writing sisters
  • Seeks a creative “Under the Tuscan Sun” adventure to enliven your writing practice by exploring the landscape, architecture, and traditions while connecting with writing sisters...and Michele’s family and friends
  • Yearns for quiet, reflective time to "retreat into  creativity."

Arcidosso, Our Location


Benvenuto ad Arcidosso!  
Welcome to Arcidosso!
(Prounounced Arch [like parch]-ih-doe-so)

This quaint medieval village of only 4,295 in southern Tuscany is renown for the best-preserved medieval castle in Europe. It's also close to where Merlin is said to have lived in a cave--perhaps he'll revisit as a muse while you start or finish your damn book!

Arcidosso is nestled at the base of Mount Amiata, the tallest mountain peak in Tuscany; get ready for spectacular vistas sure to inspire your writing!

This stunning jewel is located between Siena and Rome and two hours to Florence. In one day, you can both ski Mount Amiata and enjoy the beach in the Maremma di Grosseto for dinner.

Tuscany's rich history, architecture, countryside, and vistas are sure to inspire your writing, creativity, and transformation!

Meet Your Hosts & Instructors


In 2017 Michele met Lore in one of her Divine Dialogue Writing Circles in Florida.  After writing together through a year's focus using Elizabeth Gilbert's Big Magic, they became inspired to co-create a retreat solely reserved for feminine energy. 

They envisioned that a select number of women would gather as a creative  community of writing sisters to access their individual white-hot core of creativity... and bond over tasty Italian fare and wine in Michele's ancestral home.  

These are a few of the reasons that make the Eat, Pray, Write: Start or Finish Your Damn Book! a once-in-a-lifetime experience!

accommodations & Prices


Early Bird pricing  now through November 13, 2019 to get a $800 discount and round trip transportation from Grosseto FREE. That's a package totaling over $800 in discounts!

For those who commit to starting or finishing their damn book, we offer  accommodations in three, historic family owned  locations--each within one-minute walking distance of each other:

  • Casa della Famiglia:  See the picture above of Michele's home --that building under the church bell? That is the Casa della Famiglia, and our retreat headquarters.  
  • Locanda Thalassa: Next, there are several shared or private rooms offsite at Michele's cousin's B&B, the Locanda Thalassa--only a one-minute stroll to and from MIchele's home.
  • Cassetta Ione: Finally, there are two roomss available in the house where Michele's great-grandparents ran the Trattoria La Stella--also a few minutes walk to the retreat headquarters. 

Package, Accomodations & Pricing

Arcidosso, Tuscany, Italy


Step Back in Time...

This retreat will take you back in through time via ancient surroundings. It is designed to allow you to unplug from whatever is hectic in your daily routine and plug into your white-hot center of creativity. Isn't it time you gave yourself the gift of time?  Best of all, you'll be in a sacred, safe space with other women, like you, who value their craft, themselves, and the time it takes to Start or Finish Your Damn Book in 2020!


Benvenuto! Welcome to Michele's Home, Casa della Famiglia--the Retreat's Heart Center

As you can see, Michele's two-and-a-half story home is attached to the Chiesa San Andrea, an ancient Knights Templar Chapel. (San Andrea is to the far left.)

You are  invited to enter this ancient sanctuary to write, reflect and even pray. The campanella (bell) of the church still perches upon the roof of the home--a now-silent witness to hundreds of years of life and love in Arcidosso.

Michele has a loft (Michaelangelo's Loft) that is a very large, open space with one full-size bed and one twin bed. On the second level, the Sunflower Room is bright and airy, and has two twin size beds (if you want to share a space, this is a great space to share), and on the main level, there is a tiny, yet lovely room Michele has dubbed the Nunnery for it's sparse, yet enlightening accommodations.  All three spaces have desks available for writing.

Although everyone in Casa della Famiglia shares a bathroom, there are three large facilities, and the sharing has never posed a problem yet.


Cugino Mio! My Cousin

A mere one-minute walk from Michele's home is her cousins' Bed & Breakfast (Thalassa Locanda) where rooms are available. You'll be warmly greeted by Valeria and Mario who are thrilled that our group is coming.  

You'll feast over two gourmet dinners at the Welcome "Benvenuti" and Farewell "Arrivederci " celebrations--both at  the Osteria, La Bastarda Rossa, the B & B's acclaimed restaurant. The physical address is Via Talassese 94, Arcidosso.

At the B &B, Mario and Valeria offer rooms to accomodate your sleeping arrangements, from the two bedroom, two bath with living room and verandah Liz Gilbert suite, to the Deluxe Alda Merini room with an enormous jacuzzi tub.  

The giardino (garden) and terrazzo (terrace) at Mario and Valeria's is lovely, and they look forward to making sure each writingsistre is able to enjoy their outdoor space.

What We've Included for You!



  • Welcome “Benvenuti” Gourmet Dinner on arrival day at Osteria Bastarda Rossa, Michele’s cousin’s acclaimed restaurant 
  • Daily delish, Italian continental breakfast buffet (gluten-free options); coffee & tea 
  • Daily, day’s end gathering for wine and nibbles at Your Soul Café: Conversations that Open Hearts and Inspire Actions (Total 5 gatherings)
  • Celebration “Arrivederci” Gourmet Dinner & Awards before departure day--also at Osteria Bastarda Rossa
  • Two, fun classes about wine tasting and, pasta making
  • Meals included: 7 x breakfasts / 7 x lunches / 4 x dinners



  • Balanced itinerary allows for sacred space to pray, reflect, meditate—and of course, write
  • Plenty  of free-time to create in the privacy of your room, in communal areas,  or to walk the narrow, stone passages of Arcidosso in discovery of the  many medieval churches and piazza's that make a perfect place for  reflection and writing.
  • Workshopping  with other women who write in unique groups based on experience. 
  • For  our beginners, or Hummingbirds, workshops will be structured at a  beginning level; for our experienced writers, or Falcons, you'll be able  to jump right in with other experienced writers.



  • Daily group work, solitary writing time, and workshopping... 
  • Writing tools discussions and workshops led by Michele and Lore where empowered feedback for your writing, projects, and skills are discussed. (Total 3 seminars)
  • Writing prompts, optional mentoring, and writing routines...everything you need to take your experience back home and continue writing your damn book! 
  • Rich variety of interior and exterior spaces to inspire writing including Michele’s home and garden; the Knights Templar Church connected to her home; the historic village of Arcidosso and; delightful surprises waiting for you to discover them in your explorations.

Eat, Pray, Write International Retreat Application

We are thrilled to invite you to register and join us to Start or Finish Your Damn Book in Tuscany!  We will be accepting between twelve and fourteen writing sisters for a small-group experience created to inspire your productivity and provide a safe space for like-minded wordsmiths to lift each other to new heights. Your steps for application are:

1. Fill out the International Retreat Application. Make a copy for yourelf.

2. We will then send you an invoice via email. Pay your $250 non-refundable deposit within 24 hours of receiving the invoice to guarantee your sacred space.

3. Instructions will follow once you've made your deposit of how to send a writing sample of between 500 and 5,000 words. This sample does NOT have to be from your book and can be if you choose. 

4. Click on the link right below to begin!

                                        International Retreat Application


EArly Birds Save $800! Exclusive Pricing is good through November $120 more with Full payment!

Package, Accomodations & Pricing

Room Availability (jpg)


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