black-fly-notebook-and-mugThe 2017 Black Fly Writers Retreat will be held Thursday, May 4 – Sunday, May 7. The inspiring four-day, three-night weekend of workshops, readings, and writing takes place at the idyllic Shoreline Camps on Big Lake in Grand Lake Stream, a town with a population of just over 100 in northeast Maine near the Canadian border.

2017 Black Fly Writers Retreat attendees spend three mornings in workshops of no more than twelve participants working with one instructor. Afternoons will be open for writing and optional individual meetings with the instructors. In addition to the intensive workshops and one-on-one sessions, the weekend will include faculty and participant readings.

Shoreline Camps is a cluster of rustic, lakeside cabins. Each cabin will house a varying number of Black Fly Writing Retreat attendees. Each cabin includes its own bathroom, a living room, an equipped kitchen, fresh linens, blankets, and bath towels. Each cabin includes a wood stove and outdoor fireplace with complementary firewood.


Fiction with Brock Clarke

Memoir with Elizabeth Peavey

Poetry with Kerrin McCadden


While Thursday’s afternoon arrival is a chance for participants to have a casual meet and greet, plus evening dinner and reading together, the workshop sessions kick into high great first thing Friday. Please see the day-to-day schedule below.

→ 2017 Black Fly Writers Retreat SCHEDULE


OPTION #1 Single Room
As always, the MWPA offers an all-inclusive retreat package that includes lodging, meal plan (provided by Weatherby’s), and workshop fees. The meal plan includes dinner on Thursday, lunch and dinner on both Friday and Saturday, and lunch on Sunday.

Single rooms are extremely limited at the Black Fly Writing Retreat. They will be filled on a first come, first serve basis. If you are interested in a single room, please contact the MWPA about availability. (*Please note that breakfast is not included in the meal plan.)
→ MWPA Members: Single Room $700

OPTION #2 Shared Room
This all-inclusive retreat package includes lodging, meal plan (provided by Weatherby’s), and workshop fees. The meal plan includes dinner on Thursday, lunch and dinner on both Friday and Saturday, and lunch on Sunday.  Shoreline Camps features rustic cabins and shared rooming may be a double room, or may be as many as four attendees in a large, “camp style” room.
→ MWPA Members: $600 | Nonmembers: $750

OPTION #3 Lodging/No Meals
In the interest of offering the 2013 Black Fly Writing Retreat at various price points, this option includes only lodging and workshop fees. Attendees may then prepare their own meals in their cabins. *Attendees may choose Option #3 and pay a la carte for select lunches and dinners.
→ MWPA Members: $450 | Nonmembers: $600

OPTION #4 Commuter
If you are lucky enough to live in the beautiful northeast of Maine and can drive to Shoreline Camps in Grand Lake Stream, you may take advantage of this option and attend the workshops but forgo lodging and meals.  *Attendees may choose Option #4 and pay a la carte for lunches and dinners.
→ MWPA Members: $250 | Nonmembers: $350



  •    MAIL: MWPA, Attn: 2017 Black Fly Writers Retreat, 314 Forest Avenue #318, Portland ME 04101
  •    PHONE: Call to have your registration and payment processed over the phone: 207.228.8263
  •    FAX: Fax in your completed registration form and credit-card information: 207.228.8150
  •    ONLINE:  Pay online using the PayPal (see below)


  • Click on the “Pay Now” button above.
  • In the field marked “Enter description,” please type “2017BFWR” and the workshop track you want to attend (e.g.: – Fiction)
  • In the field labeled “Item price,” please enter the payment amount for the registration option you desire (i.e., Full Package, Commuter, etc.)
  • Fill in your billing information (contact information, credit card number), submit your payment, and you’re done. You will receive an email confirming that your registration and payment have been received.


Shoreline Camps is a cluster of rustic, lakeside cabins. Each cabin will house a varying number of Black Fly Writers Retreat attendees. Each cabin includes an equipped kitchen (with a coffee maker), fresh linens, wool blankets, and bath towels (please bring your own soaps and shampoos). Each cabin includes a wood stove and outdoor fireplace with complementary firewood.

You may want to bring: extra blankets/bedding or a sleeping bag if you’re prone to being chilly. It’s spring in northern Maine, so think “layers” as you pack clothing. Shoreline Camps is wonderfully dark, so you want to bring a flashlight/headlamp if you’re planning any evening strolls.

Cellular & Wifi: Please note that there is limited cellular service at Shore Line Camps and no wi-fi access. There is, however, both cellular and wi-fi access at Weatherby’s, where attendees will enjoy evening drinks and meals.

Market: There is a small general store less than three miles from Shore Line Camps (Pine Tree Store), so don’t worry if you forget cream and sugar for your coffee!


While attendees will prepare their own breakfasts in the fully equipped cabins (please, no fighting over the coffeemaker), the group will come together for picnic lunches at Shoreline Camps and dinners at Weatherby’s, one of the oldest hunting and fishing lodges in Maine. Weatherby’s is located at 112 Millford Road, roughly five minutes down the road from Shoreline Camps.

Typical lunches will consist of sandwich, chips, fruit, desserts, lemonade, iced tea, hot coffee, and hot tea. Sandwiches will include tuna, turkey, roast beef, ham and cheese.

Typical dinners will consist of fresh rolls, salad, home made soup, entree, dessert, coffee, iced tea, and lemonade. Entrees is past years have included roast turkey, spaghetti and meatballs, beef, and pork tenderloin. Beer and wine will be available for an extra fee.

In partnership with the Maine Community Foundation, the MWPA is proud to offer the Martin Dibner Memorial Fellowship for Maine Writers. The Dibner Fellowship will cover the full cost of one attendee to the 2017 Black Fly Writing Retreat. Every applicant must submit an application, statement of need, and work sample.

MORE INFO Dibner Fellowship

If you’re concerned that a workshop might fill up before you have time to fill out and mail a registration form, just contact us and we’d be happy to hold you a workshop slot for one week. Contact: / 207-228-8264

The MWPA is not able to accept installment payments. Workshop space will not be reserved until we receive full payment. If an agency, business, school, or other organization is paying student fees, payment is still due at the time of registration. Purchase orders or intent to pay are not accepted. The MWPA accepts checks, money orders, cash, and Visa or MasterCard through our PayPal account, printed registration forms, or over the phone. If you would prefer to pay with American Express or Discover, payment can be made through out PayPal account. If you are unfamiliar with PayPal, we will be happy to assist you. A $25 fee is assessed for bad checks.

A nonrefundable fee of 25% of the workshop cost is included in each registration. Partial refunds (75% of the workshop fee) will be granted for cancellations made at least one week before the writing retreat. Cancellations made less than one week in advance will not be refunded, no matter how compelling the reason. We cannot refund participants for missed workshops.

The MWPA is proud to offer Continuing Education Units (CEU) for this workshop. The CEU is a nationally recognized method of quantifying the time spent in the classroom during non-credit learning. Ten hours of instruction equal one (1) CEU. (*Please note that by definition, CEUs are non-credit continuing education and therefore not transferrable as academic credit.)

Workshops that do not meet a minimum enrollment may be canceled up to two business days (48 hours) prior to the first class meeting. If a workshop is canceled by the MWPA for any reason, all registrants will receive a full refund.

Weather-related cancellations are extremely rare. Call 207-450-1225 to check on the status of your workshop if you are concerned about inclement weather. If a workshop is canceled for weather-related reasons, the MWPA will announce the cancelation as soon as possible, the workshop will be rescheduled, and all registrants will be notified of the new date. If a registrant cannot attend the rescheduled workshop due to scheduling conflicts, the registrant will receive a full refund.