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Mindful Writing Retreat

Join me for my third-annual writing retreat in the serene mountain town of Idyllwild, California at Spirit Mountain Retreat. 

June 17th - 22nd 2024

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This is a week for writers who are looking to go deeply into a writing project or editing while in a beautiful, natural environment with optional activities to support their practice in a small group setting. Also called a "writing salon," participants will come prepared to work independently but will have an opportunity to receive feedback from Katie and all participants on up to 5,000 words of their work in progress. If you are not open to reading and commenting on your peers' work, this may not be the retreat for you though "independent study" options may be considered; contact Katie if interested or book a call.

Our mornings begin with a guided mindfulness meditation that has been tailored for writers, followed by independent writing time. In the afternoon, there is a mindful movement break before lunch, where you can join the "writers cafe" and share your updates, ask questions, and discuss ways to overcome obstacles in our writing.


Each afternoon, there are various excursions and hikes you can join to enjoy and feel supported by the stunning natural environment. Then, at around 4:00 pm, we have a feedback workshop. During this time, two writers each have the "writers spotlight" for ~50 minutes each.

After dinner, there will be an optional community read that we will discuss each evening. This year's pick is Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert. Afterwards, participants are free to explore, go on a sunset walk, chat by the fire, or use the indoor meditation room for further reflection, stretching, or other practice.

During this retreat, there will be the option to add on individual sessions for a fee with Katie the day before and after the retreat as well as each morning of the retreat. These can be used for clarity/accountability meetings and/or editing work. To inquire and create a plan, book a call with Katie here.

We will be in gentle silence while on campus at Spirit Mountain Retreat where there are three restrooms available and tables and chairs both inside and outside to work, but participants may go off-campus if they wish to chat with others or work elsewhere such as in cafes or a park. Spirit Mountain Retreat is at the edge of downtown in a residential area, with neighbors whose backyards are adjacent to us. We are also located just steps from a small bookstore, bagel shop, cafe, and massage studio.

Program fee: $599

Program fee with lodging (5 nights at SMR): $1,099

Spaces limited to 10 participants.

Meals not included. Payment plans available by request.

This is an alcohol- and drug-free retreat.

Have questions? Email me at or book a call with me here.


Katie Allen, MA

Mindfulness Meditation student teacher (MMTCP 2025)

I've been teaching for over 13 years and have added on writing retreats since 2021. I've taught in the United States, France, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, China, and have traveled to over 30 countries altogether. I've hosted four week-long retreats in Idyllwild and Joshua Tree, California.


I published my first book in 2021 but have been writing my entire life. I'm working on my second memoir, and I've been teaching The Writers Circle for several years in addition to hosting a variety of workshops and other creative writing classes. I'm also an editor with Elyssar Press and do freelance editing.


I am also a student teacher in a two-year Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Certification Program that has helped shape my retreats, including my upcoming Mindful Writing Retreat.

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I have never felt so seen and supported on retreat. 


Katie has the uncanny ability to bring people together that have the common goals of sharing writing and growing as individuals. She is building a community of passionate, caring writers that will change the world.

Katie is a great facilitator for creating meditation, writing and love of nature during her retreats. You feel a sense of belonging and a reaffirmation of why we write. Would highly recommend the retreat experience!

- Angie Alkove

- Siw Heede



Subject to Change with Notice


7:30 - 8:00am

Outside, weather permitting



Participants take care of their own meals


8:00 - 12:00 PM

Independent writing time


12:00 - 12:15 PM

Mindful Movement



Writers Cafe | Participants take care of their own meals


1:30 - 4:00 PM

Optional excursions, walk, hike, yoga, nap, write, explore, meditate, read


4:00 - 6:00 PM

Feedback session (2 writers per day)



Participants take care of their own meals


7:00 - 7: 45 PM

Common Read Discussion (Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert)



Free time: sunset walk, stargaze, explore town, read, connect with others around wood-burning stove

Check-in time TBD, check-out Saturday 11:00am



Retreat Fee: $599 

Retreat Fee with Lodging (5 nights at SMR): $1,099

Meals are not included: participants can prepare meals at Spirit Mountain and/or eat out in downtown Idyllwild, which is 5 minutes by foot from the venue.

Spirit Mountain Retreat Lodging: There are 5 modest rooms available and one attached, private apartment. Once full, participants will need to book off-site lodging. There are many options nearby and within walking distance, including cabins, AirBNBs, motels, and a campground.


Spirit Mountain Retreat Center is a non-profit organization located in Idyllwild, California, approximately 124 miles east of Los Angeles. It has 4 simple and clean private rooms with a shared kitchen and living room and 2 shared bathrooms. There are 2 additional rooms that don't share the public spaces that each have a private bathroom. It has a cozy house atmosphere with a wood-burning stove and a meditation room.


The grounds are nestled among the pines with spaces for writing, meditation, yoga, and self-reflection. To get to downtown Idyllwild takes approximately 3-5 minutes by foot.