Get Away. Relax. Connect. Write.

At The Writing Life Retreat, we believe in the importance of community, of connection, of open space and air in a place where we can think, explore, and relax.

During your time here, you will have the opportunity to participate in a writing workshop, hear craft talks from accomplished writers, share meals with other writers, and take time to hear yourself think.  Our goal in this retreat is to give you a place and opportunity to go deeper into your writing life. 

Our schedule is full but not busy, and we put an emphasis on time together and alone. At Maplehurst, you'll have the chance to take walks, sit on the front porch, spend time in the gardens, and enjoy the quiet of the Pennsylvania countryside. 

Your hosts are Kelly Chripczuk, Andi Cumbo-Floyd, Christie Purifoy, and Shawn Smucker. We are all writers, although we each approach our work in different ways. The one thing we all share, though, is a love for words and for genuine connection to other writers. We look forward to sharing this weekend with each of you. 


Come meet and spend time with writers who write in various genres and for various reasons. Details about speakers will be forthcoming shortly.
(Also, see below for information about our other great presenters.)

Kate James

Novelist and Memoirist

Author of A Prayer for Orion

Nicole Gulotta

Author and Podcaster

Author of Wild Words

Tara K. Ross

YA Writer and Podcaster

Author of Fade To White

Elrena Evans

Nonfiction Author

Author of Mama, PhD

Garrett Drew Ellis


Author of Write Until You Feel Better

Carla Foote


Principal at Fine Print Editorial

Lisa Bartelt


Contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul

Elizabeth Byler Younts


Author of The Silence of Water

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Our writer's retreat will be a laid-back but rich time together. While all sessions are optional, and we encourage people to manage their energy and stamina throughout the weekend. 

Please note that the special reading by Antoinette Brim on Saturday night is a unique opportunity to not only hear a published author read but also to talk with that writer both before and after the reading. We hope you will prioritize this session as you plan. It is also our hope that you will, to the best of your ability, plan to be on site for all the pieces of the workshop since connecting with the other writers in attendance is a significant part of this retreat experience.

Friday, June 12:

  • 3pm-5pm: Registration, Visit the Maplehurst Gardens, Campsite Set-Up
  • 5pm-7pm: Home-Cooked Dinner and Social Time
  • 7pm-9pm: Open Mic - Sign-Up Sheet will be available during registration.

Saturday, June 13:

  • 8am-9am - Home-Cooked Breakfast
  • 9am-9:30am - Meditation and Reflection with Kelly
  • 9:45am-10:30am - Craft Talks
  • 10:30am-10:45am - Break
  • 10:45am-11:30am - Craft Talks
  • 11:30am-12pm - Exploration, Conversation, and Relaxation
  • 12pm-1pm - Home-Cooked Lunch
  • 1pm-3:30pm - Writing Workshop
  • 3:45pm-5pm - Relaxation and Connection Time
  • 5pm-7pm - Home-Cooked Dinner 
  • 7pm-9pm - Reading by Special Guest
  • Sunday, June 14:
  • 8am-9am - Home-Cooked Breakfast
  • 9am-9:30am - Meditation and Reflection with Kelly
  • 9:45am-11am - Getting to Work, Staying Focused, Avoiding Overwhelm Conversation
  • 11am-12pm - Closing Conversation

**Schedule is subject to change. Please check back for updates.



109 State Rd. 
West Grove, PA  19390

Our six annual gathering will be held at Maplehurst, Christie and Jonathan Purifoy's 1880 farmhouse in Chester County, PA

More about the venue


Local Airbnb Locations

from $20/night

Local Hotels are Available in Kennett Square and nearby Newark, DE

More Great Speakers
Author and Speaker Charity Singleton Craig
Novelist and Blogger Alison Treat
Nonfiction Writer and Marketer Rachel Schmoyer
Author and Book Launch Expert Anna LeBaron

Reserve Your Space

Reserve Your Space Now

$245 through April 1, 2020


  • 5 Home-Cooked Meals
  • All Craft Talks
  • Writing Workshop
  • Reading by Invited Author
  • Publishing Conversation
  • A Historic Home and Garden to Explore
  • Connections with Other Writers
  • Intimate Access to Speakers and Presenters



A refund of your full registration cost, minus a $50 processing fee, is available until May 15, 2020. From May 16-June 7, 2-18 a 50% refund is available. After June 7, no refunds will be made.  

Travel to Maplehurst?

Maplehurst is not accessible by public transportation, but we are happy to help you coordinate carpools with other participants, locate travel from train stations or airports, and do all we can to make your travel as easy as possible.

What should I wear? 

June in Pennsylvania is usually warm but comfortable. The barn in which we hold many of our sessions is fully climate-controlled, so if you chill easily, bring a sweater. This is a very casual affair, so dress comfortably. 

Can you accommodate disabilities and food allergies or preferences? 

We have wheelchair accessible (ADA compliant) bathrooms available.  The ground at Maplehurst is, well, hilly, so it may not be accessible for people in wheelchairs or with other mobility issues to stay at Maplehurst.

If you need other accomodations, please let us know, and we will do our absolute best to accomodate you.

Please also let us know if you have food requests or allergies. We will absolutely avoid any foods that cause severe allergic reactions, and we will do our best to accommodate everyone's food preferences as well. 

Can I stay at Maplehurst?

You are welcome to pitch a tent and camp on the grounds of Maplehurst. These 10 spaces are free of charge and available also on a first-come, first-served basis.

Also, your family is welcome to camp with you if you'd like, and we welcome them at meals for a small fee of $5 per meal per person.  (Note, we ask that you not bring dogs with you because some participants may have allergies.)