The Art of Writing – A retreat for writers in Florence

The Art of Writing,

a writers retreat in Florence, Tuscany

If you need help with your writing, join  our writers workshop in 2018

New Date for 2018

3rd – 8th June  

The workshops and lectures are geared to both first time and established writers. Hosted by Author Lisa Clifford and Public Speaker Matthew Ferrara – with another best selling Author Jane Corry as an inspirational tutor.

Their classes will offer valuable information and networking opportunities and enable you to concentrate on how to get your work into a condition to be published.

There will also be an opportunity to pitch your idea to Martha Ashby,  the Director of HarperCollins Commercial Women’s Fiction UK. Martha works with big brand authors including Cecelia Ahern, Mhairi McFarlane and Lindsey Kelk, as well as emerging talents such as Amanda Brooke and Beatriz Williams. When looking for new talent, Martha looks for originality of voice,

Our workshops combine lectures from guest speakers – providing you with literary interaction with several published authors. There will also be some time for relaxation in Florence in the evenings.

However, you will be expected to work intensively, spending the morning in lectures, writing in the afternoon, gaining feedback from your tutors and through interaction with your group.

The idea is to aid you to advance own project.

Our goal is that you leave with a sense of accomplishment and a continued desire to master the art of writing.


About your Tutors

Lisa Clifford 

Lisa Clifford grew up in Sydney. She moved to Italy when she was sixteen years old and returned to Australia after winning a scholarship to the Australian, Film, Television and Radio School. Following a career in journalism that includes reporting for 2GB, Mix FM and Channel 10 news, Lisa was associate producer of the Channel 10 Late News. Throughout her career, she continued to travel to Italy, corresponding for 2UE, the ABC’s Radio National and the Voice of America News Service. Lisa contributes opinion pieces, guides and lifestyle articles on Italy to The Australian, The Australian Financial review, Gourmet Traveler and a range of other magazines and newspapers. She is the author of Walking Sydney and The Promise – an Italian Romance and Death in the Mountains.


Lisa lives in Florence with her husband and two children. She has a very positive attitude to life as is displayed her recent radio broadcast with Karen Swain on Accentuate the Positive, which can be found by following the highlighted link to her website.

In 2009, Lisa was named the winner of the Australian Victorian Premier’s Grollo Ruzzene Foundation Prize for Writing about Italians in Australia.

Naples, A Way of Love


Join Lisa and photographer Carla Coulson on this intimate and magical journey through one of the oldest cities in the world. Naples, A Way of Love takes us away from the tourist traps and into the heart and soul of the city, a mystical paradise of hidden cobblestoned alleyways, shrines to the saints, ancient crypts filled with skulls, street art, fishermen’s quarters, and some of the most breathtaking architecture in the world.

Through Carla’s intimate portraits and stunning atmospheric shots coupled with Lisa’s touching and honest reportage we meet the people and places behind this fascinating city. Captured vibrantly in words and pictures this is the Naples Carla and Lisa know so well. Learn how to order coffee the traditional way, walk inside the Conservatory of Music, meet Antonio the mandolin man and, of course, taste the pizza for which the city is famous.

Regular Tutors include:-

 Jane Corry

Jane Corry | Penguin Random House

Jane Corry is an author and journalist and has spent time as the writer-in-residence of a high-security prison for men–an experience that helped inspire My Husband’s Wife, her bestselling debut thriller.Blood Sisters is her second thriller. Books by Jane Corry. My Husbands WifeBlood Sisters and for 2018 The Dead Ex.

James (Jim) Friel



Product Details


Novelist James Friel, author of many books including The Posthumous Affair, in which he defends the value and virtues of the single life against the widespread cultural view that being in a couple is a superior state of being.

The Posthumous Affair by James Friel, (Tupelo Press) ‘…a devastating and illuminating exploration of love and grief, opens in late nineteenth-century New York then travels to a Venice that is mysterious, decaying, and gloomily beautiful… All the way through, the novel is so lucid, and reveals such deep understanding of the emotions, that it presents to us an astonishing new form of erotic love.’

Martyn Bedford


Martyn Bedford (born 1959) is a British author. He is an alumnus of the University of East Anglia.[1]

The first twelve years of Martyn Bedford’s writing career were spent as a journalist on regional newspapers. His initial book Acts of Revision won the Yorkshire Post “Best First Work” Award.[2] He later became the director of the novel writing programme at the University of Manchester, and is fiction critic for the Literary Review.[3] Currently, Bedford teaches the Creative Writing module at Leeds Trinity University.[4]

In 2008–10, he was Academic Writer-in-Residence, Royal Literary Fund Fellow.[5] Bedford lives in Ilkley, West Yorkshire with his wife and two daughters.

  • Acts of Revision (Doubleday, 1996)
  • Exit, Orange & Red (Bantam, 1997)
  • The Houdini Girl (Random House, 1999)
  • Black Cat (Viking, 2000)
  • The Virtual Disappearance of Miriam (digital narrative, 2000)
  • The Island of Lost Souls (Bloomsbury, 2006)
  • Flip (Walker, 2011)
  • Never Ending (Walker, 2014)
  • Twenty Questions for Gloria (Walker, 2016)

Conrad Williams


Conrad Williams was born in 1969. He is the author of seven novels (HEAD INJURIES, LONDON REVENANT, THE UNBLEMISHED, ONE, DECAY INEVITABLE, LOSS OF SEPARATION and DUST AND DESIRE), four novellas (NEARLY PEOPLE, GAME, THE SCALDING ROOMS and RAIN) and two collections of short stories (USE ONCE THEN DESTROY and BORN WITH TEETH). He has won two major prizes for his novels. ONE was the winner of the August Derleth award for Best Novel, (British Fantasy Awards 2010), while THE UNBLEMISHED won the International Horror Guild Award for Best Novel in 2007 (he beat the shortlisted Stephen King on both occasions). He won the British Fantasy Award for Best Newcomer in 1993. He won another British Fantasy Award, for Best Novella (THE SCALDING ROOMS) in 2008. In 2009 he was Guest of Honour at the World Horror Convention. He edited the anthologies GUTSHOT, which was shortlisted for both the British Fantasy and World Fantasy Awards, and DEAD LETTERS (forthcoming from Titan Books). He is an associate lecturer at Edge Hill University.

He lives in Manchester, UK, with his wife, three sons and a monster Maine Coon.

Conrad Williams is represented by James Wills at Watson, Little Ltd.


Prices –

For full information on accommodation and pricing, and feedback on the fantastic workshops we have held since 2013 please check The Art of Writing website,  on