The Canebrake Resort - WriterCon Retreat


July 16-20, 2025

Our 2024 retreat was the first one at The Canebrake Resort and it was epic! We are already excitedly looking forward to next year. Join us in July of 2025 for a five-day, small-group writing retreat at the 300-acre Canebrake Resort in Wagoner, OK, on Ft. Gibson lake. Our retreat group will have the resort to ourselves with paths to hike, a pool to enjoy, bikes to ride and much more! 

This retreat will leave you inspired to move forward in your writing journey! 


Attendance is limited and we will open registration August 25th. 


“I’ve gained invaluable knowledge and found a community of like-minded individuals at WriterCon. This event has been a great source of inspiration and support for me. I attended my first WriterCon in 2022, followed by another in 2023. In addition, I’ve participated in two small-group WriterCon retreats and even went on a WriterCon cruise in 2023. Thanks to the amazing instructors and supportive community, I have become a two-time award-winning author and, more importantly, made lifelong friends.”


Jenny  LaBranche

“Family can be a double-edged sword. I finally let my daughter read some of my work. I’ve been reluctant, as she’s been very critical. As she read, she kept saying, ‘this is really good. The retreats are paying off big time.’ I’ve learned more about what I don’t know and it’s been a help. Having fun and kind instructors isn’t a hardship either.”
Katrina Stephenson


William & Lara Bernhardt will be your hosts. 2025 mentors and agent will be announced at later dates. 

William Bernhardt

Author & Publisher

Lara Bernhardt

Author & Publisher





We will meet for five days, Wednesday through Sunday, with at least 20 hrs of instruction. We will fill those sessions with critique, interactive discussions of various writing and publishing topics, editing, and much more. You will submit a partial manuscript before the retreat begins so your instructors, William and Lara Bernhardt, will be familiar with your work and ready to offer useful feedback when you arrive. We will also have free time for optional activities and other fun surprises. Best of all, you will meet your new writing family, people with whom you can consult, commiserate, or collaborate long after the retreat ends. Many retreat groups we’ve taught have remained in touch and become close-knit writer families.
Wed July 16th
  • Check-in available at 2pm
  • Charcuterie, Wine & Beer Welcome Reception
  • 3pm Session 
  • Dinner 
Thu July 17th
  • 8-9 Continental Breakfast
  • 9-1pm Session
  • 1:00pm Lunch
  • 6pm Dinner
  • Evening Event
Fri July 18th
  • 8-9 Continental Breakfast
  • 9-1pm Session
  • 1:00pm Lunch
  • 6pm Dinner
  • Evening Event
Sat July 19th
  • 8-9 Continental Breakfast
  • 9-1pm Session
  • 1:00pm Lunch
  • 6pm Dinner
  • Evening Event
Sun July 20st
  • Continental Breakfast or Upgrade to their epic Sunday Brunch with Prime Rib
  • 9am Session
  • Check Out by 12


We will meet at the beautiful Canebrake Resort in Wagoner, OK, just about an hour from Tulsa. The Canebrake is a vintage Oklahoma venue that has been modernized under its new ownership. Situated on 300+ acres, there is plenty of space for you to relax and stimulate your creativity.


Available activities include swimming, fishing, hiking, biking, golf simulator*, spa*, pickleball*, game room – and more! 


*Spa, golf simulator, and pickelball are additional fees.


Pricing for 2025 will be announced by August 25th. 

Hotel Room

There are 8 hotel rooms with king beds. They can be split to two twins for double occupancy. 

Queen Suite Cottage

There are 4 Queen suite, one-room cottages featuring one queen bed and one king bed. The king can be split into twins for triple occupancy. Private Deck w/ Seating, Gas Fireplace, 4 cozy chairs.

King Suite Cottage

There are 4 King suite, one-room cottages featuring one king bed, 2 cozy chairs & fireplace, desk & chair. The king can be split into twins for triple occupancy. Private Deck w/ Seating,


Click on a question below for the answer. 

Will you cover writing craft, or marketing, or publishing?

All of the above. Happily, having been a bestselling author and publisher in this industry for more than 30 years, William Bernhardt can discuss all aspects of the business. People who are just starting may prefer craft classes, while people who have more polished manuscripts, or who have published in the past, may be interested in marketing, agents, and publishing houses. We will provide whatever will help you most. We can also make referrals to the many agents who have participated in WriterCon programs.

What hours will we be in class?

We let the participants determine the exact hours, but we’ll start in the morning, work for at least four hours, then break so that you can apply what you’ve learned. Talking is fine, but the goal is to get these ideas and improvements down on paper!

Will we share our work with others?

If you want. At some point during the retreat, we will ask those in your small group to exchange email chapters so you can get feedback from others. This is invaluable. You’re not only getting feedback, you’re being given beta readers you may keep for the rest of your writing life. You don’t have to accept all the opinions, but it never hurts to hear them hear them.

Why don't you publish the topics you will cover?

Because what we cover completely depends on who is there. We ask for your manuscripts in advance so we can plan accordingly, choosing topics that best serve your needs. When we break into smaller groups, you’ll be paired with people writing similar work, so again we can focus on your needs.

Will you edit our manuscript?

We will certainly read and advise. But most people bring manuscripts in their early stages, and actual line-editing is pointless when there’s still revision to do.

I’ve heard about the famous WriterCon conference swag bag. Will we get one at the retreat?

You better believe it. Our ace team has already started putting them together. They will knock your socks off!