About Us


Anja Klemp Vilgaard is a professional writer and a seasoned journalist. Educated by three of the best journalism schools in Denmark and wielding a Master’s of Editorial Management from the University of Southern Denmark (Syddansk Universitet), she is also a former newspaper editor with her first novel, ‘Curse of the Seal Woman – I am of More’, currently under consideration with a major publisher.

Anja has lead numerous newspaper and magazine start-ups to long-term success, taught journalism to an international audience, freelanced, worked as a columnist and sparred with some of Denmark’s best journalists. She has served as a communications consultant, magazine editor and chair person for the NGO Crossing Borders, which specialized in conflict management via writing in the Middle East. Today she runs her own storytelling company, ‘Get Ajour‘.

Anja conducted field research on the South African Media, post-Apartheid, as well as the Activist Aborigine Media in Australia. She has lived in Washington DC, Barcelona, Spain and Johannesburg, South Africa – combining her passion for travel, learning and writing in all of her endeavors. Her work has been published in some of Denmark’s largest newspapers and magazines.

Shawna Kenney is an award-winning author, arts journalist and creative writing instructor. Her memoir I Was a Teenage Dominatrix (Last Gasp) enjoys international translation and is in development as a television series. She co-authored Imposters (Mark Batty Publisher) and edited a new anthology of literature-inspired erotica entitled Book Lovers (Seal Press). Her nonfiction work has appeared in The New York Times, Creative Nonfiction magazine, Playboy, Bust, VICE, and The Rumpus, among others, while her short fiction has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

Shawna’s personal essays appear in numerous anthologies and she has shared her words at Goucher College, Sarah Lawrence, UCLA, California State University Long Beach, Monmouth College, the University of Maryland, Ladyfest LA, the DIY Convention, Vallekilde School of Communications (Denmark), the Hollywood Public Library, Hustler Hollywood, on NPR affiliates and on the BBC.

She received a BA in Communications from American University in Washington, DC and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. She teaches creative writing in private workshops and for the UCLA Extension Writers’ Program. She lives in Los Angeles, California.

DATES OF RETREAT: August 20-26 2017