writeGet away from the hurry of daily life to unwind and reflect at the North Beach Writers’ Retreat. This generative workshop provides the time and space to push “pause” on the daily responsibilities of life and give yourself the mental space to write. Enjoy writers’ craft talks, writing prompts, fellowship with other writers, feedback, and time for quiet reflection and writing.


social-media-content-calendar-940x470Memoir: August 20-24, 2019. Limited spots avaiable until filled. Apply today!

Poetry: Done for this year. Check back next year!


thumbnail_IMG_1406Nestled in the heart of the Park Rapids lakes area, the North Beach Writers’ Retreat is located on the property of the North Beach Resort. During free time, attendees have access to the entire resort, which includes a sandy swimming beach on beautiful Potato Lake, an indoor swimming pool, sauna, volleyball nets, canoes, and kayaks. The resort is located only a short drive from Minnesota’s oldest state park, Itasca, where you can walk across the headwaters of the Mississippi River and spend time in one of the few areas of original timber in the state. Hiking trails, bike and kayak rentals, scenic drives, and two beautiful interpretive centers await visitors to Itasca State Park. Park Rapids was recently listed by The Travel Channel in its article “50 of the Most Charming Towns in America.” We agree!


Visiting Writers, 2019:

heid-erdrichHeid E. Erdrich is the author of five collections of poetry, most recently Curator of Ephemera at the New Museum for Archaic Media from Michigan State University Press. She is editor of two anthologies of literature by Native writers including NEW POETS OF NATIVE NATIONS from Graywolf Press. Her recent non-fiction work is Original Local: Indigenous Foods, Stories and Recipes. Heid’s writing has won awards from Native Arts and Culture Foundation, Loft Literary Center, Minnesota State Arts Board, Minnesota Book Award, and more. You can see her award-winning, collaborative poem films on her Vimeo channel.  Heid grew up in Wahpeton, North Dakota and is Ojibwe enrolled at Turtle Mountain. She teaches in the low-residency MFA Creative Writing program of Augsburg College.YNH7Yori_400x400

Kao Kalia Yang is a Hmong-American writer. She is the author of The Latehomecomer: A Hmong Family Memoir (Coffee House Press, 2008), winner of the 2009 Minnesota Book Awards in Creative Nonfiction/Memoir and Readers Choice, and a finalist for the PEN USA Award in Creative Nonfiction and the Asian Literary Award in Nonfiction. Her second book, The Song Poet (Metropolitan Books, 2016) won the 2016 Minnesota Book Award in Creative Nonfiction Memoir. It was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Chautauqua Prize, a PEN USA Award in Nonfiction and the Dayton’s Literary Peace Prize. The Song Poet has recently been modified into a stage musical, which will be performed at the Ordway theater.  In the fall of 2019, Yang will debut her first children’s book, A Map Into the World, a collection titled What God is Honored Here?: An Anthology on Miscarriage and Infant Loss By and For Indigenous Women and Women of Color, and a work of nonfiction about refugee lives in America, Somewhere in the Unknown World. Yang is also a teacher and a public speaker.

Retreat Leaders:

headshot08smallLouAnn Shepard Muhm is a poet and teacher from northern Minnesota.  Her poems have appeared in Antiphon, Alba, Red River ReviewEclectica, Pirene’s Fountain, and CALYX, among other journals and anthologies, and she was a finalist for the Creekwalker Poetry Prize and the Late Blooms Postcard Series. Muhm is a recipient of Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grants in Poetry in 2006 and 2012, and was chosen as one of two Artist Fellows by Region 2 Arts Council of Minnesota in 2016.   Her full-length poetry collection Breaking the Glass (Loonfeather Press, 2008) was a finalist for the Midwest Book Award in Poetry. Muhm was awarded an MFA in poetry from Sierra Nevada College in 2016.  She also serves as an associate instructor of English for Lake Tahoe Community College in South Lake Tahoe, California, and has taught poetry writing since 2011 online for The Loft Literary Center.thumbnail_IMG_1299

Tanya Stafsholt Miller has an MFA in memoir and poetry from Minnesota State University, Moorhead and MA in English from Bemidji State University.  Her poems and memoir essays have appeared in The Talking Stick, Bombshells: War Stories and Poems by Women on the Homefront, Red Weather, The Minnesota English Journal and others. She won a scholarship to the Northwoods Writers’ Conference in Bemidji, MN. Most recently, she was one of twelve writers chosen to attend the Pelee Island Book House writers’ retreat with Margaret Atwood and Wayne Grady. She currently teaches writing classes in Park Rapids, MN, and is an adjunct instructor at the University of Minnesota, Crookston.


Submit the following items by email to northbeachwriters@gmail.com to apply:

  1. Cover letter that explains who you are, and what you are hoping to accomplish in this retreat
  2. Ten-page writing sample 
  3. $25 non-refundable application fee  (will be applied towards the cost of the retreat if you are accepted–send the application materials above first, and then we will let you know how to pay this fee)

Application Deadlines:

Poetry: Done for this year. Check back next year!

Memoir: Limited spots still available.



We know what it is to try to carve time to write out of a busy life, and how hard it is to justify time away from the daily round.  Both of us are mothers who teach more than full time, serve our communities as volunteers, and work hard to keep up with our responsibilities in all of these areas.  That means that sometimes our writing gets pushed to the side, or squeezed into the margins.  Each of us, however,  has been graced with time at writing workshops and retreats around the country, and each of us has found that time an invaluable gift. Writers write. And yet, so many of us let writing get lost in the shuffle of schedules, families, and jobs.  We want to share the gifts of time and reflection with others, as well as our expertise and the expertise of renowned visiting writers, here in this beautiful place  among the lakes and trees of northern Minnesota. We hope that you will join us in celebrating you as a writer, and that you will honor yourself and your writing  with this time and space to create.

~Tanya and LouAnn