The Studio is a center for writers and readers of English. It is presently closed but will reopen in its new home in a centuries-old stone building in the Old City of Acre (Akko), Israel, when building renovations are completed.
In its previous incarnation The Studio hosted Workshops, Master Classes and a Literary Series.
Workshops: Fiction (Evan Fallenberg), Manuscript (Evan Fallenberg), Children's Literature (Amanda Cohen), Creative Nonfiction (Sherri Mandell), Short Fiction (Tania Hershman); Reading Like a Writer (Joan Leegant).
Master classes (a sampling): Story Structure in Fiction, Narrative (Joan Leegant); Fiction (Abby Frucht); Fiction, Memoir and the Landscape Between (Sarah van Arsdale and Peter Bricklebank); Stories of Immigration (Ilana Blumberg).
The 2012-2013 Literary Series featured:
- Asaf Schurr, Israeli translator and novelist
- Abbie Rosner (with Balkees Abu-Rabieh), Galilee culinary tour guide, writer and journalist
- Ilene Prusher, US/Israeli journalist and novelist
- Ilana Blumberg, American academic and creative nonfiction writer
- Martin Fletcher, UK/Israel, NBC bureau chief and fiction and nonfiction author
- Adir Miller, Israeli screenwriter, comedian and actor
- Rachel Kadish, American novelist
The 2010-2011 Literary Series featured:
Literary series featured
- Gilad Evron, Israeli playwright (Ulysses on Bottles)
- Yael Hedaya, Israeli novelist (Eden, Accidents, Housekeeping)
- Oded (Max) Brenner, US-based chocolatier and author
- Yair Lapid, Israeli columnist, journalist, playwright, novelist (Memories After My Death)
- Evan Fallenberg, Israel-based novelist, launching party for When We Danced on Water
Nevo (novels: Homesick, World Cup Wishes)
Ehrlich (writer and founder/proprietor of Tmol Shilshom
Alkalay-Gut (poet & performance artist)
Keret (books: Missing
Kissinger, The Bus Driver Who Wanted to be God, Kneller's Happy
Campers, The Nimrod Flip-Out; films: Jellyfish, Skin Deep)
Hilu (novels: Death
of a Monk, The House of Dajani)
Leegant (story collection: An Hour in Paradise,
novel: Wherever You Go)
The 2008-2009 Literary series featured
- Matt Beynon Rees (the Omar Yussef Palestinian mystery
- Joan Leegant (An Hour in Paradise)
- Reva Mann (The Rabbi's Daughter)
- Dorit Rabinyan (The Persian Bride, Strand of a
Thousand Pearls/Our Weddings)
- Haim Watzman (Company C: An American's Life as
a Citizen-Soldier in Israel, A Crack in the Earth: A Journey Up
Israel's Rift Valley)
- Ron Leshem (Beaufort)
- Meir Shalev (A Pigeon and a Boy, The Blue
Mountain, Esau, In the Beginning…)
- Tina Davis (book design; art books;
"Voice" at Beit Oren on Mount Carmel
"Writing from the Senses" at Ein Gedi on the Dead Sea
"Vision and Revision" at Maaleh Hachamishah in the Judean Hills
"Characterization" at Maaleh Hachamishah in the Judean Hills
"Talk to Me" (Dialogue in Fiction and Non-Fiction) at Neve Shalom-Wahat
al-Salam Guest House in the Judean foothills
"Crossing Genres" (novel-writing, playwriting, poetry, creative
nonfiction) at Maaleh Hachamishah in the Judean Hills
SELECTED TESTIMONIALS from previous
The best part of the retreat was the spirited instruction.
Thank you for introducing me to a new circle of talented, thoughtful
went there to have fun. To take the pressure off and just return to my
old love of writing. And enjoy it I did. Tremendously…The techniques
helped me overcome previous hurdles in writing. Main one for me was a
critical obstacle: getting past my inhibitions to START and just let
that creative energy spill onto the page…The revision process that
follows becomes more important, but less painful, as expectations are
back in the enterprise software pressure cooker but part of me hasn't
left the atmosphere of the retreat. Decompressing? Maybe, but I'm not
sure I want to decompress completely and lose this state of mind
altogether. The retreat lit a small flame in me and I'd really rather
it did not go out.
Wrobel, Kfar Yona
how grateful I am that I took a chance and signed up for the writers’
workshop. It was the first such workshop I have taken and was a bit
apprehensive…So here is the good news…great news. I met fellow writers.
This is a huge thing for me. More than one generous soul has offered to
read and critique my book…and vice versa. We have even made plans to
start a writers club. So thank you for bringing together
wannabe writers along with the great job you did organizing, planning
Richter, Zichron Yaacov
I got home I felt as if I had just stepped off a long plane ride, and
it did take a few days to settle back in. I so enjoyed the retreat
because you managed to create a community that was warm and supportive.
The leaders shared their struggles and victories and made writing seem
accessible to all who were willing to put forth the effort.
Braun-Svorai, Williamsville, NY
retreat was a very meaningful, wonderful experience for me and might
just give me the courage to take my writing more seriously.
- Dr. Yvonne
a resounding success. I can't describe the sense of satisfaction and
excited fulfillment with which I headed back home. You arranged the
whole thing marvelously, taking care of each detail – though to the
outsider it might just appear that everything flowed "effortlessly". I
know how much effort goes into that "effortlessness". And what a
delicious mix of people. Talent and desire and earnestness and respect
were just some of the qualities I enjoyed. So many stories, such rich
life experiences, such a variety, and all lovers of the word. All
striving to articulate something deeply personal, seeking to hone their
Thank you, thank you, more than I can say. How lucky to have found you…
Abraham, Herzliya Pituah
am still floating! Can't seem to nor do I want to, come down to earth.
I spent a wonderful Shabbat in the magnificent Holy City recounting my
experiences of the last couple of days, to all who wanted to listen
(and probably to several who didn't!). It was just great. You have
given so many people so many things, including inspiration, confidence,
ideas, knowledge, and a great deal of friendship and support. What a
lot of mitzvot, all in three days!
You'd better start planning the next one.
you once again for the wonderful writing retreat last week. As usual,
everything flowed beautifully. I returned home feeling again how
important writing is to me and the need to set aside time to do so. I
really appreciate all your efforts that go into planning, organizing
and teaching. I continue to learn so much from you both. I also gained
so much from the opportunity to be with other writers on the retreat.
was reading a short story in The New Yorker yesterday. Found myself
asking all kinds of questions - what is the point? Who is the main
character? What is redundant? Seems I learnt something. It was great,
both humbling and stimulating. Looking forward to next time!!!
I have lots of wonderful friends but most of them have mystified looks on
their faces when I tell them about going away on a writing retreat.
They just don’t get it. So it’s good being with people who understand,
and don’t ask, so what do you DO there? As a long-time congress
organizer, I was pleased, but not really surprised, to see that you
made every person at the retreat feel wanted and special. We all
relished the obvious interest you both took in our work as well as in
our wellbeing. You were so calm and self-assured that you passed that
feeling on to your participants; this helped us to write those
twelve-minute exercises and even the pesky forty five-minute one. There
was no burden of stress which might have held us back - instead, we
were able to focus on the task and do the job we'd come to do.
just finished going over all the "stuff" from the Retreat. I had to
list all the exercises in the order we did them, just to sort out the
jumble in my head. It was such a fantastically enriching experience and
has given me so much food for thought, and so many starting points for
essays, memoirs, creative fiction, etc., that it's going to take a very
long time to absorb it all and produce something tangible. I could
probably spend a week, writing from morning till night and still not
get to the end of the list of things I could write if I had the time!
- Dr. Jenni
Tsafrir, Petah Tikva
you put a lot of thought, time and effort into the organization. You
did everything possible to make people feel comfortable. And you are a
great team. The sub-plot of the retreat was, for me, respect. The
respect you showed each other, the respect you both showed for the
efforts people made, respect for the schedule that you set, and
finally, respect for the written word.