The Kolkata Writers’ Retreat

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April 19-25, 2020
Hosts: Ananya Sarkar; Jordan Hartt
Accommodations:  The Oberai Grand Hotel.
Registration: This retreat is limited to six writers. Admission by invitation only.
Daily Schedule | Our Home in Kolkata | F.A.Q.

Kahini workshops put master teachers and editors together with ardent students in a full-immersion week of writing

Live and write among the gardens, libraries, and inspiration of Kolkata. Designed for writers across all genres, the Kolkata Writers’ Retreat is a blend of generative writing time, workshop time, and private writing conversation, set amidst the energy and tranquility of the Oberai Grand hotel.

Please note: this is an elite writing workshop limited to six, and admission is by invitation only. Our annual goal is to complete one new written work or excerpt of one thousand words or fewer, and for each one of us to receive a full, hour-long workshop on this new written work.

The Oberai Grand: possibly the most famous hotel in Kolkata

Those who are part of this leave with a new, workshopped piece, as well as community memories and inspiration for life.

Since our inception in 2014, Kahini participants have published over three thousand individual times in literary magazines; released over two hundred books; been featured in the Best American Essays, Best American Poetry, Best American Short Stories, and Best American Science & Nature Writing anthologies; won New Zealand’s Best First Book Award, been short-listed for the Caine Prize for African Writing; and received university professorships in creative writing.

Daily Schedule

All events take place at the Oberai Grand hotel 

We live and write only minutes from the largest library in India

4 pm-onward: Arrivals, getting settled.
10 am-1 pm: generative writing sessions
10 am- 1 pm: generative writing sessions
Free day
10 am-1 pm: workshop sessions
10 am-1 pm: workshop sesisons
Departure by 11 am.

Our Home In Kolkata

Our discussions are both intense and inspiring, designed for each of us to hone our unique writing voices in a spirit of serious fun

Kolkata is known as the cultural center of India. The beauty, energy, and inspiration of the city, along with the time and space to write, and create, leads to much new rich new artistic work.

Intensive craft discussion, paired with rich generative-writing sessions.

In one of the most beautiful and inspiring locations on earth, we spend our afternoons writing or enjoying the best of what Kolkata has to offer, discovering the history, culture, and natural beauty of the area; or reading and writing at good restaurants and cafes.

During the week we’ll have various gatherings, spending quality literary time with one another and building community.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are meals included?
Because each resident has their own unique dietary needs, we do not provide food. There is a restaurant onsite, and a significant number of shops and restaurants nearby.

Where do the central gatherings happen?
Our morning freewrites and evening gatherings happen at the Oberai Grand hotel.


asAnanya Sarkar is a short-story writer, book reviewer, and poet from Kolkata. Her work has been published in such magazines as The Times of India, Woman’s Era, New Woman, 4indianwoman, Children’s World, KidsWorldFun, Muse India, Induswomanwriting, Conversations Across Borders, Indian Ruminations, Earthen Lamp Journal, Spark and The Madras Mag. Ananya won the first prize in both the Story Writing Contest by the American Library, Kolkata, as part of the Fiction Festival 2008 and the Induswomanwriting Poetry Contest, 2012. She was also a prize winner in the LoudReview Review Writing Competition, 2012 and Writers’ HQ Story Competition, 2016. Reading books, watching sitcoms and going for long walks are her favourite hobbies.

Jordan Hartt jordan copyis the author of “Leap” and “Drifting.” His lifework is creating experiences where people find the craft immersion to reach for their best writing, find the community to connect meaningfully across backgrounds, and find the lifelong inspiration of the writing life. To do this, he facilitates the Kaua’i Writing Studio; hosts the Studio’s five annual writing residencies in Po’ipū, Kaua’i, as well as annual writing retreats in Kolkata, India, and Kampala, Uganda; and gives as a philanthropist to artists and visionaries around the world.