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The Dream of a Writer's Retreat

Updated: Sep 8, 2019

The creation of a writer's retreat cabin grew from the desire to share the beauty of where we live, surrounded by forest and lakes, with writers and other creatives. This is a short piece on how it came about.



Chris has been designing book layouts and covers for over twenty-five years, I've written over thirty books of fiction and sold several screenplays. We love our work and where we work in the Cascade mountains above Ashland. We agreed that this forested setting would be a great place for a writer's retreat, and the idea to build a cabin began to take shape.


I wanted a gabled roof. Chris wanted plenty of windows so writers could look out at the forest—and she wanted a sleeping loft. We both agreed that it would need a deck.

We agreed that this forested setting would be a great place for a solo writer's retreat, and the idea to build a cabin began to take shape.

We scoured the internet and looked at dozens of plans but were coming up short until we found Summerwood Products in Canada, and a charming cabin style called the Bala Bunkie. It had a small footprint, a cross-gable roof with French doors, lots of windows downstairs, and windows in the roomy sleeping loft.

Our Summerwood kit arrived in August—a truck full of wood-framed windows and doors, a stack of precut lumber, and an instruction book. This would call for more skill and knowledge than either Chris or I possessed. Enter our jack-of-all-trades friend, Tom. Managing the time between Chris's clients, my writing schedule, and Tom's availability, the three of us put in the work and watched our writer's retreat take shape, surrounded by forest on three sides and facing Owl Creek.




Work on the cabin had begun in August, 2018. One evening, after a long day, we were sitting on the deck commenting on the chill in the air when we realized we needed a fire pit, and, to breathe life into our dream of a writer's retreat, we'd need a name.


In the late fall we began work on the inside of the cabin. The charm of little Owl Creek would invariably draw us out to a campfire, and it was there in the cool of the evening that we christened our writer's retreat Owl Creek Cabin.



February, 2019

A very snowy winter put a stop to work for a few months, and in the summer we added the bathroom and shower. The cabin was finally ready for guests!


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