“A defining experience for me as a writer” — Kathlene Postma
This is the trip that made me want to simply write and share of myself, because it’s the thing that rings clear for me. — Maria Carter (Read Maria’s beautiful essay about Spannocchia at This One Life.
Spannocchia is an extraordinary place: hills of olive trees and vineyards, crenelated towers and woodland paths. In the evening a golden light washes stone buildings centuries old. Whether we were examining fiction, hiking to a castle ruin, or contemplating something we’d heard that day, being at the beautiful tenuta was an integral part of our experience. Ann Hood’s workshops were wonderful. All the participants gave thoughtful feedback and Jane Hamilton and Anne LeClaire added great humor and insight. Spending the day discussing writing, and then breaking bread with everyone over a Tuscan dinner table was a joy! The week at Spannocchia was a treasured time set apart from the everyday, giving us room to contemplate, share, and grow in new directions as writers. — Muriel Redifer
To get such a thorough critique on an entire novel draft is a rare gift and just what I needed to push my book to the finish line. For the novel workshop to be with Ann Hood AND in Tuscany was fantastic and a constant reminder that it’s crucial to go the distance in your writing if you want to continue to improve and to complete a good book. This was a defining experience for me as a writer. — Kathlene Postma
The workshop in Spannocchia was invaluable. Not only was Ann Hood a wonderful and inspiring teacher, but the other participants were also thoughtful and constructive. I have never had such a helpful and intelligent group of people in a workshop. Spannocchia is a gorgeous place in which to write, talk about writing and eat wonderful food. — Kristin Sherman
I thought I walked into a dream the minute I got off the minivan at Spannocchia. The fifteenth century castle, expansive view of Tuscan valley, a group of talented writers, and Ann Hood. Ann’s inspiring teaching, the group’s intelligent discussions, the food, the stories, and the laughter still echo. Thanks for the sweet memories. — Ann Tsao
The opportunity to immerse ourselves in our work on a 12th-century Tuscan estate was a tremendous gift. Ann Hood’s workshop was extraordinary. The quality of the writers – and their critiques – was excellent. The food, wine and camaraderie were incredible. Spannocchia is simply unmatched. — Ken Olsen
Becoming a better writer amidst the majestic beauty of the Tuscan Countryside, the rambling history of a 900-year-old villa and the dynamic environment of a working farm was an unforgettable experience. Inspiration was everywhere. In the glorious food, everything homemade, from the pasta to the wine and olive oil. In the winding, wooded paths, where one might encounter a serene white cow, a cluster of lively pigs or even catch a glimpse of a deer on during a misty morning run. And most importantly, in the people. Writers who had traveled far, not just to get to Italy, but in life. A week of magic. Nothing less. — Karen Soltero