Carol’s Table sits on a sunny rise within walking distance of historic Katoomba and the picturesque village of Leura. The Blue Mountains World Heritage National Park wraps around. Dramatic sandstone cliffs rise in the distance. Walking trails lead to majestic waterfalls, cloud-filled canyons and a blue haze of eucalypt forest.
The roomy and tranquil weatherboard cottage has indoor and outdoor writing areas, a light-filled dining room and cosy sitting areas. Up to three writers can be accommodated at a time. The guest accommodation includes two bedrooms and one suite. The bedrooms share a shower toilet area. The suite has a separate study nook and ensuite with a bath.
This is a relaxed space. Writers can stroll around in their pyjamas if they desire and help themselves to breakfast and lunch in the light-filled conservatory in their preferred time. Dinner is an opportunity for conversation and fits around the rhythm of the house. There are no hard and fast rules. Instead the focus is on supporting writers with their individual projects while providing unstructured space and time to think and write. Some of the best insights are gained in spontaneous conversations over breakfast or on a trip to the laundry line.
Carol offers week-long residentials but is flexible around these things as well. A group of writers may wish to stay for a shorter time and focus on a particular aspect of craft. Carol is happy to arrange workshops to suit. Another writer may wish to stay longer than a week and work largely on her or his own. We can always come to some arrangement about costs.
Like a piece of writing, a residential needs to find it’s own shape.
“When Carol and I met Letters to the End of Love had been seen by one professional writer and several beta readers, but I was still wondering if its various complexities added up to a coherent whole. Carol’s reading of the manuscript was forensic, intelligent and empathic. Her detailed critique of my work covered all aspects of the manuscript (characterisation, plot, narrative arc, tone and style, syntax, historical accuracy, image and metaphor).
Carol diagnosed a major issue with one narrative strand and gave me crucial insight into how I might go about fixing the problem. Her advice helped me strengthen that narrative strand and align it more firmly with the other two strands that made up the rest of the novel. Carol’s insights saved the novel from being presented to a publisher with a fundamental flaw. Carol reads like a writer and I believe any manuscript would benefit greatly from her expertise.”
Author of Letters to the End of Love (Published by University of Queensland Press)
Winner 2014 WA Premier’s Award (Emerging Writer). Shortlisted for 2014 NSW Premier’s Award (New Writing)
Carol’s table is a place where you are entitled to be a writer.
You come here to write—no matter if it is the first stages of a family history, the middle stage of a thesis or the next novel in a publishing career. While Carol groups writers to foster the best mix, this is a space where all the angst about Am I good enough? and Will this project work? is left at the gate. You come here to write and to have the right sort of conversations about writing and your particular project.
“A light, a lap, a loving gaze, Carol has provided my manuscripts with all that. Her unconditional care and engagement with my writing, her insight into the characters, her critical dissection of the plot, while revealing to me, an unsuspecting writer, the subplots, made her an invaluable reader and added focus and depth to the story.
When stuck, lost, needing some understanding, Carol unfailingly provided honest counsel and re-energised me with her love for writing, for story that needs telling and for writers.”
Loubna Haikal, writer, dramatist, essayist and author of Seducing Mr Maclean