Thursday June 11, 2015 at 1:00 AM EDT
Sunday June 21, 2015 at 12:00 PM EDT

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Ken Feinberg, Owner


Cortona, Italy   

Why Cortona, Italy?

Ken studied in Cortona while at UGA, and really connected with the town.  The warmth of the people and the vibrant tranquility of the village has always stayed with him, and has called him back for a few visits over the years.  He has maintained friendships with locals and those friendships can now benefit you as some of Ken's friends will help host us and make our stay in Tuscany more enjoyable.


Ken Feinberg
Creative Studios of Atlanta


Q.  Do I need to speak Italian to go on this trip?

A.  No.  All classes/workshops will be conducted in English, and we will have english speaking guides on all excursions who can also act as interpreters as needed.


Q.  Is there a payment plan for this program, or do I need to pay everything when I register?

A.  If needed, you can make payments in 4 installments.  If you pay when you register, you can elect to pay with a credit card via PayPal, with cash, with a check, or with a cashiers check.  If you elect to make payments, you need to submit post-dated checks with your "Writer Enrollement & Travel Agreement" as outlined in the agreement.


Q.  I can't find the "Writer Enrollment & Travel Agreement" that I need to fill out & send in to complete my registration.  How can I get one?

A.  Easy.  Either search your email for the confirmation email you received after registration & follow the link OR, if that doesnt work, email accounting@csatl.com and a PDF will be emailed to you.  After that, print it, fill it out, and mail to Creative Studios of Atlanta; 274 North Main Street; Alpharetta, GA 30009


Q.  Can I bring a companion on the retreat who does not want to take the writers workshops?

A.  We highly discourage non-participating companions on this retreat.  While you will have time on your own away from the group, we suggest you use that time for personal reflection, artistic exploration, and independent writing blocks.  If you have a companion who wants to join you, we suggest that they choose to become full participants of the program even if they do not intend to become a professional writer.  Since we will be employing techniques that both beginning & seasoned writers can use, anyone and everyone can benefit from this experience.


Q.  What writing tools should I bring with me?

A.  A journal, a sketch pad, and a laptop or tablet that is compatible with the latest version of Final Draft.


Q.  Can I come earlier, or stay longer if I want to travel in Italy or Europe before or after the retreat?  

A.  Yes.  Since the flight is not included, you can do whatever you want.  The program begins with our "Welcome Wine Reception with Locals"  on Friday, June 12, 2015.  You may arrive and/or leave on your own via the Venice airport or another location via bus, car, or train & bus (the train does not arrive directly in Cortona).


Q.  Do I have to meet you at the airport in Florence, or can I meet you in Cortona?  Likewise, do I have to go to Florence with the group after the retreat ends?

A.  You do not need to meet us at the airport, nor do you need to return to the Florence airport from Cortona; but there is only 1 group transportation provided, and that is to/from the airport.  Any travel not desribed in the inclusions is not part of the cost of the program, and would be the participants responsibility.


Q.  Can I alter any part of the package?

A.  The package is a group package and the prices have been discounted to a group rate; however; you may elect not eat the group meals and/or to not attend any or all of the group excursions if you choose.  


Q.  If I have food allergies, can you accomodate my needs?

A.  If you notify us well in advance of any food allergies, we will do our best to accomodate your needs while offering the best variety we can in the meals you will eat.  Tuscn food is world renowned for their fresh ingredients and amazing flavors.  Please, be considerate of our hosts & their culture and introduce yourself to the wonder of Tuscan cooking.  We appreciate you limiting your special requests to true food allergies.


Q.  Why are all breakfasts & Lunches included, but dinners aren't?  Why didn't you make it "All-Inclusive"?

A.  Like the rest of Tuscany, and Italy for that matter, the food is phenomenal and we feel that you should be able to experience multiple venues of your choice in addition to the food we provide to you.  We also believe that you need time for yourself that is not group time; and the evenings are a wonderful time to explore the area and do some personal refelction.  In this way, you are free to choose when you eat, when you explore, and when you write.


Writers Retreat in Tuscany, Italy

Come experience the quaint mountainside village of Cortona and treat yourself to a 11-day Writers Retreat "Under the Tuscan Sun".

Join CSA and Ken Feinberg, for a one-of-a-kind writers experience in the scenic beauty of Tuscany.

Every participant will join us in Cortona, Italy for a creative work/study/vacation experience.  Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned writer, you will be motivated & inspired by the adventure, history and culture in this quaint Etruscan village atop a mountain in central Italy.  

Daily morning writing sessions with Ken Feinberg will include methods from the Artist’s Way and other creative processes, allowing you to expand your writing techniques. Writers will attend daily afternoon Tuscan excursions designed to "fill the well" of their imaginations.  These excursions will be followed by un-scheduled evenings during which participants can explore, dine, and write.  Writers will bring their updated works to class daily.  Come add to your toolkit as you delve into the exploration of story.  

Writers will convert one or more stories into short screenplays and "pitch" one to Golden Globe nominated Italian Director Giacomo Arrigoni and award winning Producer Ken Feinberg. This dynamic duo will select multiple short screenplays to shoot during the CSA Acting Intensive the following week that will be edited by 4-time Emmy award winning editor Craig Tollis. 

Writers will also have the unique opportunity to enjoy an annual village-wide medieval celebration that conincides with our retreat.

All participants must be 18 years of age or older.  This retreat is limited to 20 participants.

Create the opportunity for one of your stories to be produced as a film in picturesque Cortona, Italy!

Final Draft & CSA have partnered up to enhance your writing experience! 

 All writers will receive a 30-day trial of the latest Final Draft software to use while writing their scripts in Italy this June.  If you fall in love with the software and want to keep using it, great news!  You will also be receiving a 30% off coupon from our sponser, Final Draft, that you can redeem when you make your purchase.  At least 1 writer will receive a full version of the program FREE!  A drawing between all Writing Retreat participants will be held in Italy, allowing everyone who indulges in the CSA Writing Retreat a chance to win the big prize!  


Your Trip Includes: 

  • An "Orientation Packet" that will be emailed to participants after their registration is complete,
  • group ground transportation between the Florence Airport / Cortona, 
  • a welcome wine reception with locals,
  • 9 nights lodging with a scenic view of the valley (at Hotel San Luca)
  • all breakfasts
  • all lunches, 
  • 2 group dinners with a glass of wine,  
  • a 3-day, village-wide medieval celebration, 
  • a walking tour of Cortona & hike w/picnic lunch at (At Santa Margherita), 
  • daily classes & workshops in Cortona, 
  • a Tuscan cooking class, 
  • a guided tour of the local art museum (The Diocesean)
  • an Etruscan-civic museum tour (The MAEC)
  • a guided Italian street market experience, 
  • a group excursion and wine tasting in beautiful Montepulciano,
  • the possibility of a stop at an olive farm (pending availability),
  • an art demonstration, and  
  • IMDB credit if your script is selected for production.

Writers Agree to Provide (Not Included):  Airfare, Departure Taxes, Passport, Travel Documents, a Laptop, 8 Dinners, any personal expenses and/or purchases, any individual excursions and/or transportation.

*All Fees based upon double occupancy.  Add $30/night to upgrade to a single. 

*excursions are subject to change if local circumstances prove impossible.

Become Inspired.     Come to Italy.

Investment: $2800.00

For more information, call Ken at 678-481-8191

Space is limited, do not delay.


Register Now!

More Info about the Medieval Celebration that coincides with our retreat: 

The Medieval Festival of the Archidado is an annual medieval celebration Cortona celebrates from Friday until Sunday.

It is the re-enactment of the medieval wedding between Francesco Casali, lord of Cortona, and Antonia Salimbeni, noble woman from Siena in 1397.  The wedding was elaborate; with important kings and queens attending.  The magnificent celebrations lasted for several days. Since then, the city commemorates the noble wedding every year with festivities.

For a few days a year, Cortona goes back to the Middle Ages with street decorations, ladies and knights, pages and flag throwers, archers, and many other historical figures in medieval costumes. 

The best crossbowmen of each borough challenge each other at the Archidado Jouster to win the “gold bolt”.

The festivities open with a spectacular evening flag-throwers show; to determine who are the best flag-throwers in town.  Throughout the weekend you can taste medieval food and watch artisans working as they used to in the Middle Ages. On Saturday there is a historical re-enactment of the wedding between Francesco and Antonia; with music, dances and flag-throwers.

On Sunday the Provaccia (the jouster’s trial) takes place; when the crossbowmen practice their best shot.  The Archidado Jouster ends with the awarding of the Gold Bolt to the borough with the highest score.  The winners skills are lauded with dancing and a special dinner.