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 High Plains Writing around the world / Workshops

Chania, Crete
Oct. 27 - Nov.  2, 2019
Prague, Czech Republic
Nov. 3 - 8, 2019
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We love the ranch, but sometimes we need a roadtrip. We have planned two  High Plains Workshops on the road in 2019.


Read our workshop philosophy here.


The cost listed for workshops in Chania, Crete and Prague does not include transport to the fabulous locations, food or lodging. We recommend you book a B&B or hotel close to the very central locations listed in the workshop descriptions.

Workshops  will be limited to 8-12 participants.

contact us if you want email updates about these workshops, or join our mailing list.

Kazantzakis/ Going Epic

Oct. 27 - Nov 2.

Chania, Crete


Kafka / I Can't Do  that! (can  I?)

November 3 - 8, 2019 Prague

workshop application

Kazantzakis / Going Epic

Oct 27 - November 2, 2019

Workshop Leader: Robin McLean

Chania, Crete

Workshop locationOur workshop will be held on Evans Street in Chania. It is a renovated studio on the second floor of a 100 years old stone building in a local neighborhood on the edge of Old Town. Koum Kapi beach is 50 meters away and it is a 5-10 minute walk to the center of the Old city, the Venetian Port and all the other museums, restaurants and Lodging. See photos of our space below. Note Evans House with the red marking on the map. Our host has offered discounts on his other rental spaces attached to this beautiful building. See below for details.
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The setting: Join us this fall to write on Crete, the largest of the Greek Islands and one with deep literary roots. it was first named in Ancient Greek in Homer's Odyssey. This is the birthplace of the myth of the Minotaur and his Labyrinth. though its hey day is long past, you can still explore traces of what was once the center of the sophisticated and literate Minoan civilization (2700 - 1400 BCE). The island was later conquered by a series of invading empires, from the Romans to the Nazis, and remnants of these histories are evident here too.  It is still a place of great historic, mythic and imaginative power, but these days Cretan life might be a bit tamer. a visitor to the old port city of Chania enjoys the bright Mediterranean sun, meandering old streets to the ancient city wall, colorful and bustling markets, ancient ruins, the incredibly warm and friendly locals. (the food is great too). Kick back for sunset at one of the many open-air cafes on the limani. Imagine Zorba doing a dance of Joyful life on the water's edge. (They made the film Zorba the Greek here in Chania in 1964.) In short, we are transported! Perfect: Our workshop will be held near the water in Old town and in walking distance of all the museums, archeological sites, shops, hotels, markets, etc.

The Workshop: when I was a young potter, Nikos Kazantzakis changed my life with Zorba the Greek, who cut off his thumb to make a better pot. Later, he knocked me out again with The Last Temptation of Christ.  I learned from him that a writer's job (among other things) is sometimes to go big, to explore the subject matter that seems out of bounds to we mere mortals. Working on the island Crete, birthplace of ancient myths and gods, and through a series of craft exercises and approaches inspired by Kazantzakis, we will seek out what "going big" means for each of us individually. What are our epics? Once we know, how do we give ourselves permission to try writing in a larger scale? then, how do we accomplish the task? The aim of this workshop is to give writers the tools and confidence to reach for subject matter that we previously thought was out of reach, too grand, bold or beyond our skills, and especially, all things reserved for our heroes.
No prior reading required. Open to all levels of experience.
$775 for this one week session.

This workshop will be limited to 8-12 participants. We will meet for workshop from about 9 am to 1 pm Monday through Friday.

Our Host at Evans House has generously offered to provide our whole workshop with a dinner during our stay, a homemade taste of local cuisine. Schedule to be announced.


Aside from this dinner and a welcome reception with wine and snacks, the price of this workshop does not include, transportation to Crete, housing or meals, although we will sure share many.

Our Evans House host has also kindly offered a 30% discount for rental of his three other Evans Street B & B accommodations  to any workshop participant. We can put you in touch with him or look at the other Evans House spaces here. The spaces are beautiful and right down stairs and  around the corner from our workshop space. 

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Kafka, I Can too!

Kafka / I Can't Do That! (Or can  I?)

November 3 - 9, 2019

Workshop Leader: Robin McLean

Prague, Czech Republic


Workshop Location: We will gather Monday - friday in a cozy renovated 600 year old attic located right next to the palace of the Archbishop Quidobald Thun. See photos of the space below the workshop description.

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The workshop: Kafka the provocateur. Kafka the artist. Kafka the wild mind. Kafka the seeker. Here in Prague, on the very streets Kafka walked, we will ask the maestro himself to not only inspire our work, but also, with his audacity and brilliance, to influence it. Through a series of craft exercises and approaches suggested by Kafka's incredible stories, we will allow him to guide us down more liberated paths into our minds, into dreamscapes (storyscapes) we did not know were there. He will teach us to be a little less tame, a little more dangerous and risk-taking, as we go deeper into our writing.
No prior reading required. Open to all levels of experience.
$775 for this one week session.

This workshop will be limited to 8-12 participants. We will meet for workshop from about 9 am to 1 pm Monday through Friday.

The price of this workshop does not include, transportation to Prague, housing or meals, although we will sure share many.


We advise you to book a room nearby Prague Castle, since the workshop space will be minutes away from there.

The Setting: Come to an ancient city of 1,000 spires and roam the same cobblestone streets that Kafka walked a century ago. Our base lies in the Lesser Quarter, beneath the iconic Prague Castle, just a short walk away from the 14th century Charles Bridge. Untouched by the wars, it has sprung to life in the 30 years since the Soviet Union collapsed. Today, this energetic, magical city has an endless offering of cultural and culinary opportunities, so you can see the classic tourist sights and sounds by day and still check out the city's alternative, edgy nightlife. 

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Our workshop space near Prague Castle is a 1400 Century renovated attic in Lesser Town.
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