Rick Moody

2016 Retreat Leader Rick Moody

Tutka Bay Writers Retreat

Advance Registration open for 49 Writers Members at the Kobuk Level and above. Open Registration begins on December 1, 2015.

Friday, September 9 through Sunday, September 11, 2015
Tutka Bay Lodge (59° 28' N 151° 30' W)

The Tutka Bay Experience

The Widgeon at Tutka Bay Lodge

Your weekend of instruction and inspiration will take place at Tutka Bay Lodge, named by Fodor in 2012 as one of the World's Top 100 places to stay. Tutka Bay is a remote and rugged fjord characterized by soaring mountain, secluded beaches, old growth forest, and dramatic tidal fluctuations. To get there you fly or drive to the fishing community of Homer on the Kenai Peninsula (225 miles south of Anchorage) then take a 20-minute water taxi ride across Kachemak Bay. On the way you will observe a variety of shore and water birds, and there is always the possibility of sighting sea otters, orcas, and humpbacks.

Once there you will enjoy the full-service accommodation and renowned cuisine provided by the staff of Within The Wild. For its memorable meals, the lodge sources organic, natural, and local Alaska ingredients, often from their own gardens or foraged from nearby wild places. Our retreat facility, The Widgeon, is a whimsical crabbing boat dry-docked on a tidal lagoon just a short walk away from your well-appointed cabin.

The retreat experience begins on Friday at 1pm, when we gather at Mako's water taxi on Homer Spit for the trip across Kachemak Bay. A welcome session takes place at 3pm, and your first instructional session is scheduled for 7pm on Friday, leaving you plenty of time to settle in and explore. After a full day on Saturday, the weekend wraps up on Sunday with lunch after the morning session. You'll depart Tutka Bay for Homer at 2pm, arriving by 3pm to continue your journey home. 

In session on the Widgeon

In addition to the daily instructional sessions with our retreat leader, there will be the opportunity to pursue assignments in the natural setting.

The schedule allows time for reflection and recreation in the form of beach walks and forest hikes, and time to work on your writing outside the classroom. Ÿou can choose to relax on the spacious oceanside deck, soak in the outdoor hot tub, or take an invigorating sauna. For an additional fee, you can take advantage of on-site services such as massages or local boat tours. Cookery classes and guided hiking and ocean kayaking and boating are complimentary.

Retreat fees

Retreat fees include instruction, meals, lodging in shared cabins, hot tub, sauna, and self-guided hiking. 


Registration is now open to 49 Writers members at the Kobuk Level and above. On December 1, 2015, registration will open to the public. 

Please note that genre focus of this retreat will be fiction, all experience levels.

If you need to check the status of your membership, please email 49writers@gmail.com, and we'll get back to you right away. If you would like to increase the level of your membership or become a member, please go to our membership page.

$575 for Current Members at the Kobuk Level and Above   


All registration fees include $80 return water taxi fare from Homer to Tutka Bay Lodge. Participants are responsible for their own transportation to and from Homer, and we will facilitate opportunities for informal carpooling from Anchorage. Except for the water taxi, fees are non-refundable unless we have a replacement for your slot. If you must cancel due to unforeseen circumstances, you may substitute a replacement and we will do our best to assist by activating our wait list. A 10 percent cancelation fee will apply.  

In order to offer more writers the opportunity to participate, all accommodations will be shared this year. Please note too that Tutka Bay Lodge will only be open to registered participants during the retreat, In consideration of our 49 Writers community.

Tutka Bay LodgeAccommodations

Retreat registration is limited to 18 participants. All accommodations are in shared cabins; view details here. Rooming and cabin requests may be made at time of registration, but we reserve the right to place you according to availability. 

Optional activities

Our hosts at Tutka Bay Lodge offer the following complimentary activitieshike with guide, kayaking with guide, cooking class, and yoga. Available for a fee are: Tutka Bay boat tour; Halibut Cove/Gull Island boat tour; 60-minute massage; and 90-minute massage.

Registration for optional activities will be available to registered participants in early August, with those fees collected by Tutka Bay Lodge on arrival.

For our 7th Tutka Bay retreat we have the amazing fiction and memoir writer Rick Moody

About the Instructor

Rick Moody was born in New York City. He attended Brown and Columbia universities. His first novel, Garden State, was the winner of the 1991 Editor's Choice Award from the Pushcart Press and was published in 1992. The Ice Storm was published in May 1994 by Little, Brown & Co. Foreign editions have been published in twenty countries. (A film version, directed by Ang Lee, was released by Fox Searchlight in 1997.)

A collection of short fiction, The Ring of Brightest Angels Around Heaven was also published by Little, Brown in August 1995. The title story was the winner of the 1994 Aga Khan Award from The Paris Review. Moody's third novel, Purple America, was published in April 1997. Foreign editions have appeared widely. An anthology, edited with Darcey Steinke, Joyful Noise: The New Testament Revisited, appeared in November 1997. In 1998, Moody received the Addison Metcalf Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. In 2000, he received a Guggenheim fellowship. In 2001, he published a collection of short fiction, Demonology, also published in Spain, France, Brazil, Germany, Holland, Portugal, Italy, the United Kingdom, and elsewhere.

In  May of 2002, Little, Brown & Co issued The Black Veil: A Memoir with Digressions, which was a winner of the NAMI/Ken Book Award, and the PEN Martha Albrand prize for excellence in the memoir. His novel, The Diviners was published in September 2005 and won the Mary Shelley Award from the Media Ecology AssociationIt appeared on “best of the year” lists in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, Boston, and elsewhere. Since 2005, he has published a collection of novellas, Right Livelihoods, a new novel, The Four Fingers of Death, and a collection of essays on listening entitled On Celestial Music. 

In November 2015, he will publish a new novel, Hotels of North America. His short fiction and journalism have been anthologized in Best American Stories 2001, Best American Essays 2004, Year’s Best Science Fiction #9, and, multiply, in the Pushcart Prize anthology. His radio pieces have appeared on The Next Big Thing and at the Third Coast International Audio Festival. His album Rick Moody and One Ring Zero was released in 2004, and three albums have been released by The Wingdale Community Singers, including music and words by Moody, the most recent of which is Night, Sleep, Death (2013). 

Moody is a past member of the board of directors of the Corporation of Yaddo and currently serves on the board of Archipelago Books. He is former secretary of the PEN American Center. He co-founded the Young Lions Book Award at the New York Public Library. He has taught at the State University of New York at Purchase, the Bennington College Writing Seminars, the New School, New York University, Yale University, and Princeton University. He lives in Astoria, New York

Past retreat leaders have included David VannDani Shapiro, Pam Houston, Ron Carlson, Carolyn Forché, Gary Geddes, and Ann Eriksson.

49 Writers
 49 Alaska Writing Center