Brenda runs an annual writing retreat in February each year. The next one will take place in February 2024.

Brenda has been facilitating writing retreats for the Public Affairs Research Institute [PARI] twice annually since 2021. The next one is scheduled for May, 2023.

Don’t wait

If you want to work on your writing, don’t wait for news of the next workshop to be posted.  Contact Brenda at

Past Highlights

Ongegund Writing Retreat in Somerset West 8th – 10th February 2023.

A group of seven post-doctoral fellows from UWC, Wits, Tshwane University of Technology and even one from Cornell University in the USA,  met for three days. The focus of this retreat was translating their Ph.D. dissertations into books.

Southern Centre for Inequality Studies [SCIS] 6th – 8th July, 2022


A group of eight participants from within SCIS presented their work in progress on a variety of topics ranging from books, to journal articles, op-eds and policy reports.

Pringle Bay Writing Retreat 14th – 16th April 2021.Ph.D. dissertations into books.

A small group worked intensively on their research for three days. They came from three different universities – UCT, Stellenbosch and UJ. They worked on very different projects and topics – books, a journal article and a book proposal for a publisher.  



Rhodes University Writing Retreat Hogsback, 2nd – 5th February, 2021.

A cohort of participants from the retreat at Port Alfred participated and we were able to build on the previous work.   A writing retreat is all about intensive, hard collaborative work, but also about quiet undisturbed writing time and re-fuelling in beautiful surroundings.  

Rhodes University Writing Retreat Port Alfred, 1st – 3rd of December, 2020.


At the beginning of December, Brenda ran a three-day writing retreat in beautiful surroundings in Port Alfred, on behalf of the Director of Research at Rhodes University . The group consisted of nine academic colleagues, who presented the outlines of their current research projects. The majority were translating their Ph.D. into a book.

Participants gave each other feedback and worked collaboratively together. The cornerstone of the retreat was the search for the core purpose of their writing as they developed their own unique voices. What became clear was that the internship of the Ph.D. as compared with becoming fully fledged academic authors of their own books, requires a major shift.

Book launch: Floating in an Antibubble

In early May 2016, Clarke’s Bookshop hosted the launch of Brenda’s latest book, Floating in an Antibubble.  From South Africa to Salford, A Mosaic of Pictures and Stories”.  Publisher Kassahun Checole of Africa World Press flew from the US to Cape Town for the event.

Book launch May 2016