Writers on Rivendell

“I cranked out more than 70,000 words in five days and nearly penned a complete novel. It was a beautiful dance with the creative forces and I doubt I will ever experience anything like it again.”

— Julie Cantrell, New York Times bestselling author

“After an intense 2-week reporting trip to Northern California, I came to Rivendell to write an 18,000-word book proposal . . . I was able to start—and finish—the proposal in 14 days at Rivendell. My agent loved it. It’s in New York now and a major publishing house has made an offer.”

— Kim Cross, Author

“In residence, you discover the mossy-rocked waterfall, the garden path not often taken, the fallen tree that serves as a bench. You bed to the sound of sonorous frogs, beyond. You wake a to a view of fog-mantled Lost Cove, below.

And then you write. And you write. And you soon recognize that, like the city of Oxford, the colony of Rivendell is a citadel of stewardship.

Beyond the literary pedigree, Rivendell delivers what writers crave: peace, quiet, and bucolic distance from distraction. I plan to return two or three times each year.”

— John T. Edge, Director, Southern Foodways Alliance

“I wrote the first 50 pages of my new novel, ON BROOKLYN BRIDGE, all in one month. There’s an almost inexplicable sense of creative energy fused with spiritual energy at Rivendell that I’ve never experienced anywhere else. It is truly magical.”

— Kimberly Elkins, Author

“Something special happens when I come to Rivendell. I’m able to sink into my work in progress, to discover its truths and untangle its questions. This happens both at my desk and while walking the grounds, soaking in the beauty and magic of Sewanee and Lost Cove. I don’t use the word “magic” lightly. I firmly believe a kind of magic is at play here, and history bears this out.”

— Susannah Felts, Co-Founder of The Porch Writers’ Collective

“While we try to find our words and our stories, Rivendell’s mountains and coves seem to give something of ourselves back to us, like a gift of our soul that has been waiting in these hills and soaring views. We stand above Lost Cove as a flightless bird, on the hallowed ground where Walker Percy resided. We are cracked open to creativity. When it is time for silence, when I know the ache for solitude is calling me, I long for Rivendell.”

— Patti Callahan Henry, Author

“My time at Rivendell was such a gift! The colony was conducive to my writing and reading in ways that are hard to quantify. Yes, I was able to accomplish in two weeks what would take me two months back home. However, it wasn’t just the writing and reading—I also met a wonderful group of people whose work inspires me and whose advice, kindness, and example sustains me. I couldn’t have asked for a better experience.”

— Andrew Malan Milward, Writer and Editor-in-Chief of the Mississippi Review

“At Rivendell, I had a quiet space to work, woods to walk in, and a view of the mountains out my window. It was perfect. Before I’d been there a week, I was already planning my next visit.”

— Leah Stewart, Author of The New Neighbor

“I cannot imagine writing the novel as easily without the support of this writers’ colony. Rivendell is a vital and necessary part of Sewanee’s rich literary legacy; it is ensuring that more writers have access to this landscape, to be inspired, and to write something worthwhile.”

— Kevin Wilson, Author of The Family Fang