Memoir Writing & Cooking Workshop Retreat in Provence France

Have You Been Thinking of Writing Your Memoir?

On this retreat, you will learn how to get that book idea out of your head and onto the page. You will learn to structure your life experiences into a riveting story, how to develop, character, setting and theme, all guided by award winning journalist and novelist Jan Brogan who has taught writing at every level. Additionally, you will be immersed into the slow life of living in Provence, with cooking classes from chef Kelly, optional exercise sessions, and excursions into locals only known spots in Provence.

Jan Brogan is an award-winning journalist and novelist, who has been teaching writing at every level for decades, working with teenagers, college students and adults, to conceptualize and advance their writing.

Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned writer, Jan’s insights will elevate your skills and your creative spirit to dive deep into your life story.

Chef Kelly Goehler will immerse you in the world of Provençal cuisine.

Savor the flavors of the Mediterranean as you explore local markets, handpick the freshest ingredients, and learn to craft mouthwatering dishes that tell the story of Provence on your plate.


May 13-19



Beaumont de Pertuis, France

The closest airport is Marseilles (MRS) or you can take the high speed TGV train from Paris to the Aix-en-Provence TGV station. (3.5 hours train ride) and we will pick you up from there. 


This unique retreat is for anyone who has been thinking about writing a memoir or is in the process of writing one.  You will be brainstorming with Jan and other writers in a workshop, learning how to turn your ideas into a riveting story, via scene and structure, all while inspired by the same light and energy of Provence that has fueled so many writers and artists. This experience is for all levels of writing, cooking from beginner to professional. 


Traveling alone?

 Private Room with en suite bathroom

Single Occupancy 5550€  


Traveling with your significant other?

 Private King Room with en suite bathroom

Double Occupancy 4950€ Per Person


Traveling with friends? 

2 Room suite with shared bathroom

4950€ Per Person (min 2 persons max 4 persons)    


*Please note our retreats are limited to 8 persons to ensure you have a personalised boutique experience

La Belugue

Wellness & Wandering Retreats 

At La Belugue, a luxurious Provencal Mas, you’ll find inspiration at every turn. From vineyard vistas to rustic kitchens and lavender fields, every moment is a masterpiece waiting to be captured. Our retreat provides the perfect blend of gourmet experiences, hands-on creative experiences, and leisure, allowing you to create lasting memories and narratives.

Your Local Hosts 


Jan Brogan is an award-winning journalist and novelist, who has been teaching writing at every level for decades, working with teenagers, college students and adults, to conceptualize and advance their writing projects.

            She’s taught a writing workshop at Boston University’s Summer Journalism Academy for nearly a decade and won the Scholastic gold medal award for teaching excellence. She also taught students at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, where she received a master’s degree in English, and at Northeastern University, where she assisted as workshop leader in memoir writing. She’s taught adult writers at The Brown University Learning Community, The Cape Cod Writer’s Center, The Learning Connection in Providence, RI, and the former Boston Learning Society in Needham, MA.

            She cofounded the writing blog, where she contributed for years and which was named one of the top 100 creative writing blogs by Best Colleges Online, and one of the top 50 mystery blogs by Court Reporter. She was on the programming committee and organized the manuscript critique for the New England Crime Bake, an annual conference of mystery writers.

            She’s the author of four murder mysteries and more recently, the acclaimed narrative nonfiction book, The Combat Zone: Murder, Race and Boston’s Struggle for Justice, shortlisted for both an Agatha and Anthony award for best nonfiction published in 2021. She’s just completed a historical nonfiction novel about the women who went whaling with their husbands in the 1860s and is writing a memoir for and about renown whale scientist Nan Hauser, who was saved by a humpback whale from a tiger shark in the South Pacific.

            Jan sold the rights to one of her mysteries, A Confidential Source, to Steven Soderbergh (Transactional Pictures) for development.


Kelly, an American who landed in Provence 10 years ago after 20 years of climbing the corporate ladder. She is the owner of La Belugue an 18th century Farmhouse and home to La Belugue Wellness & Wandering Retreats and La Belugue Cooking School. A graduate from French Culinary School.  Chef and a certified yoga instructor, originally from Nashville, TN,  her southern hospitality and French culinary training are sure to make you feel right at home in Provence.


What is Included:

Raina Stinson Photography

Memoir Writing Workshops

16 Hours of Hands-on and Practical teaching sessions with published writer and award-winning teacher Jan Brogan.

Cooking Classes in Provence

Cooking Classes

Gather with your new friends while enjoying time in the kitchen together creating Provencal dishes with Chef Kelly in her Provencal kitchen. 


At La Beliugue or our annex location in the village with your choice of private or shared room with ensuite bathrooms. Wi-Fi, pool, and bathroom essentials included.

wine bar


All scheduled meals. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included. 

Morning Excersise Sessions

Indulge in some personal care with optional morning excersise sessions followed by a delicious breakfast with French pastries.

Daily Excursions to Locals only Known Spots in Provence

We handcraft a seasonal agenda of sites and experiences to see while you are here. See our itinerary below.


Transportation to and from Aix en Provence TGV station on arrival day and departure day and to all excursion sites included.


Bring a beautiful journal or laptop you would like to start your memoir in, something that inspires you.  Some hiking boots or sneakers.  May in Provence can be chilly at night so bring layers too! 


Learn to identify your goals and look at your life from the storytelling perspective. Understand the seven different styles of memoir to decide which way will work best for you.

Brainstorm the key plot points of your life story, learn about scene creation and narrative structure to help you engage readers from the first page.

Learn techniques to expand your creativity, observational and descriptive powers through short meditations/brain exercises as we walk through the Provencal countryside. Learn how to find and enhance the “telling details” that enrich a story.

Get an individual editing session, and create a blueprint and writing schedule needed to complete your memoir when you go home. Learn about the publishing process, from securing an agent, to commercial publication, to self-publishing options.

Make friends with other writers who share your goals, and understand the importance of networking for ongoing guidance and support.


Hands on Experience in Provencal Culinary Traditions & Recipe-Discover the rich culinary traditions in Provence 

Knife Skills-Learn the chefs secrets to proper knife handling in the kitchen

Ingredient Selection-Learn how to select the freshest and most flavourful seasonal ingredients

Plating & Presentation-Elevate your culinary creations with principles of plating and presentation 

Wine Pairing-Gain insights into the art of wine pairing with a focus on local and regional wines

Join us for an unforgettable retreat that celebrates the soul of Provence through your writing and on your plate. Whether you’re passionate about writing, a food enthusiast, or simply seeking an immersive cultural experience, La Belugue is your canvas for a truly transformative journey.


Please note due to weather conditions or other circumstances, schedules can change and an equally enjoyable activity will be arranged

Arrival Day 1-Monday

  • Pick up in Aix en Provence at 4 pm for transport to La Belugue in the charming medieval village of Beaumont de Pertuis in the Luberon National Park

  • After settling into your room you will enjoy a welcome aperitif and dinner overlooking the vineyards of Beaumont de Pertuis with your new friends

Day 2-Tuesday -Introduction to Memoir Writing Workshop 

  • You will start this day on the right foot with an optional morning exercise session followed by a delicious and healthy breakfast at La Belugue

  •  After a bit of freshening up for the day, you will settle into a 2-hour introductory practical memoir writing workshop with Jan

  • A beautiful lunch will be prepared for you and shared in the garden of La Belugue

  • After lunch, you will have some time for reflection, relaxation, pool time, village walks and settle into a safe space you find to start your writing

  • Late afternoon we will gather again as a group for another session with Jan on story structure, character and identifying conflicts that will advance your story

  • Scheduled dinner 

Day 3-Wednesday- Perched Provencal Village Visits, Memior Workshop, and Truffles 

  • After a peaceful night’s sleep, you will rise for another optional exercise session followed by a leisurely breakfast

  • After breakfast we will travel to some of the most beautiful perched villages of Provence and end up at a beautiful chateau for lunch

  • After lunch Jan will lead you through practical meditations designed by a Harvard brain researcher to enhance your creativity.  You will work on developing observational skills and practicing descriptive writing

  • In the early evening you will have the unique opportunity to go on a real truffle hunt

Day 4-Thursday-Marche Day and French Cooking Workshop Memoir Writing 

  • After a peaceful night’s sleep, you will rise for another optional morning exercise session followed by a leisurely breakfast

  • This morning we will visit a local market and gather ingredients for the days cooking classes with Chef Kelly

  • Lunch in a local village with time to explore
  • We will return to La Belugue for bit of downtime and then gather for another session with Jan

  • In the evening we will gather for a cooking class with chef Kelly and enjoy our culinary creations for dinner at La Belugue

Day 5-Friday- Provencal Market Visit, Picnic in Provence Memoir Writing

  • Welcome the day again for another optional morning exercise session by the pool, followed by a leisurely breakfast

  • We will visit one of the most beautiful villages in Provence and enjoy the local market while gathering ingredients you chose for our picnic in Provence
  • After our picnic you will write and exchange feedback with each other and have a one-on-one editing session with Jan

  • Dinner at La Belugue

Day 6-Saturday- Writing & Wine & Dine Day 

  • After a peaceful night’s sleep, you will rise for another optional morning exercise session followed by a leisurely breakfast

  • This morning Jan will help you devise a blueprint for finishing your book and discuss the various paths to publication

  • Scheduled lunch

  • Afternoon we will travel to nearby vineyards for a locals-only known wine tour of the Luberon Valley
  • Dinner at La Belugue

Departure Day 7-Sunday 

  • Our final day will start with a leisurely breakfast on the terrace of La Belugue

  • After a bit of freshening up for the day, you will settle in with Jan for a sharing session

  • We will enjoy our final lunch together and say our goodbyes

Cancelation Policy: 

Due to the involved logistics & upfront costs, we have a no-cancellation policy or refunds under any circumstances.  Please make sure you can come before making your reservation. We encourage you to purchase travel insurance in the event of strikes, natural disasters, health problems, and other unforeseen events in your life or in the world.

**Please know due to weather or other reasons activities may change. If this is the case an equally enjoyable activity will be arranged.   

Wellness, wandering and culinary delights of Provence.

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