TV Writers Retreat at Kalani

Geoff Harris, Diana Osberg, and Stewart Blackburn

April 1, 2017 - April 8, 2017

If you're a skilled writer who wants to write a TV pilot but maybe you're feeling lost and a little burned out, join us in Hawaii to study TV writing under the guidance of a top industry mentor and rekindle your joy for writing.

Imagine sitting on a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean. You breathe in pristine air and let out a contented sigh as you work on a new pilot script.

Below you, waves crash on black, volcanic rock.

Behind you, a balmy breeze rustles through jungle foliage with a voice that sings, “You are where you’re supposed to be.”

You feel happy and confident because you have an expert mentor who is guiding you through the process of creating a TV pilot script.

Awestruck? You just might be. You’re in the company of excellent writers, your tribe. You have finally found them, and they’ve become your friends and your support system.

Pinch me, you think. And you laugh with a freedom you haven’t felt in… well, you can’t remember the last time you felt so free and happy.

Where are you?

Why, you’re on the Big Island of Hawaii and you’re studying TV writing with Geoff Harris, former VP of Story and Writer Development at NBC.

Have you been staring at a blank computer screen wishing you could make the ideas flow?

Are you feeling burned out and long to rekindle the joy you once had for writing?

Do you yearn to sell a TV pilot script but don’t know how?

Do you need expert guidance to help you create your TV pilot?

Can you imagine yourself in paradise, your soul stirred by the peaceful beauty of a tropical setting?

Then this retreat is for you!

Find your story at Kalani.

  • Pitch and begin to write a new TV pilot
  • Build confidence under the guidance of a top TV writing mentor
  • Explore the power of the stories you tell yourself
  • Dissect your own process of story making
  • Connect with your source of inspiration
  • Learn to create from a place of soul
  • Feel supported in a healthy, healing atmosphere
  • Bliss-out with a black sand beach, thermal springs, waterfalkls, and more
  • Savor fresh, delicious meals prepared with love
  • Breathe the freshest air in the world
  • discover the richness of Hawaiian culture

Tell me more.

Geoff will mentor 8-10 intermediate to advanced writers on a new, original TV pilot script, from concept, to pitch, to outline and beyond.

You can look forward to a challenging week of instructional classes, individual writing time, one-on-one mentoring, Hawaiian cultural activities and a group excursion.

Writers must qualify for the retreat by submitting a writing sample.

New Students:
To be considered, please submit a sample script (TV pilot or feature). There is no fee to apply, but writers who are invited to participate will be responsible for paying the retreat fee.

Returning Students:
If you have previously studied TV writing at a workshop with Geoff Harris, you are already qualified and will not need to apply. Email us at [email protected] to let us know you’d like to register for the retreat.

I need this retreat bad. I want to apply!


TV Writing Program

Huna Healing Circle: "Healing the Stories We Tell Ourselves"

Hula Class

Huna Healing Circle: "Finding Your Muse Within"

Lava Boat Tour

Awesome! Tell me how to apply!


With fresh ocean breezes, a vibrant jungle setting and joyous spirits all around, you'll feel happy and relaxed at Kalani.

Located on Hawaii Island, commonly known as the Big Island, and bordered by tropical jungle and the Pacific Ocean, Kalani is an educational retreat center in Hawai‘i Island’s colorful Puna District and a premiere destination for over 40 years.

Kalani celebrates Hawaiian nature, culture, wellness and spiritual growth, and provides a comfortable and nourishing atmosphere where personal transformation and empowered learning are available to all.

Note: WiFi coverage is available in several locations on campus, including Hale Aloha, the Dining Lanai, Guest Services, and near some (but not all) accommodations. While WiFi usage is free, it’s worth noting that bandwidth is limited in this jungle environment.

Your Room

At Kalani, you’ll enjoy the cleanest air in the world and simple, comfortable, and clean accommodations in a spectacular jungle setting.

Our Hale Lodge for the week is two levels with sleeping rooms and common areas on both levels.

It features garden views and is located on the central lawn near the dining lanai.

You’ll stay in a single room with a shared bathroom. (Shared rooms may be available. Please inquire.)

Here, you can relax and find peace without the interruption of a phone or television.

No need for heat or air conditioning. Since Kalani is situated on the east coast of Hawaii Island, it is blessed with the persistent flow of east-to-west Pacific trade winds.
You’ll delight in the beautiful views and gentle breezes through your screened windows.


  • Wellness Treatment
  • Yoga Classes
  • Black sand beach
  • Thermal springs
  • Waterfall
  • Snorkeling
  • Clothing-optional swimming pool


Like Pavlov’s dogs, your mouth will water when you hear the sound of the conch shell.

The three distinct tones heard across the campus let you know it’s time to enjoy the freshest, most delicious meals, prepared with love by Kalani chefs.

This daily tradition is meant to remind you of the rich cultural heritage Kalani preserves on this mystical Hawaiian land.

Kalani’s dining lanai and kitchen have long been described as the “heart” of Kalani, a central gathering place where you can experience the daily rhythms of assembly and departure reminiscent of ancient village life.

Kalani cuisine encompasses a variety of styles including Thai, Indian, and Italian. Their chefs have extensive training and a common interest in creating healthful and delicious meals.

Kalani celebrates the abundance of Hawaii by serving local tropical fruits and vegetables and fresh caught fish.

Seafood is often served at dinner (chicken and beef are served occasionally), and vegetarian options are provided, as well.

Most importantly, Kalani chefs firmly believe that the care and love invested in the cuisine is transmitted to the diner, and everything is prepared with aloha.

Retreat Schedule: 

Saturday, April 1
4:00pm    Check in to Kalani
5:00pm    Welcome and Orientation

Sunday, April 2 - Friday, April 7
Retreat Program

Saturday, April 8
11:00am  Check out time
12:00pm  Lunch

What’s included:

  • A lovely single Hale Lodge room with shared bathroom
  • Delicious meals prepared with love: Breakfast, lunch and dinner during the retreat
  • TV writing program with Geoff Harris, former VP of Story and Writer Development at NBC
  • Huna workshops with Stewart Blackburn, Hawaiian Shamanic teacher and practitioner
  • Hula class - Traditional Hawaiian storytelling through dance
  • Sunrise lava boat tour - Bound to be the highlight of your life! 

What’s not included:

  • Flights
  • Airport transfers*
  • Tips, souvenirs, and other items not listed in the inclusion above

*Kalani offers shuttle service from Hilo Airport. The price per person each way is $75. If there is more than one traveler, the price is $45 per person each way. We'll coordinate a shared shuttle for those who wish to use this service.

About the Facilitator(s)

Geoff Harris
Geoff Harris was VP of Story and Writer Development at NBC, where he honed his skill for developing writers and scripts for twelve years. As a screenwriting consultant, teacher and freelance writer, Geoff has taught TV writing workshops sponsored by ABC and NBC for more than a decade, including an annual workshop for Latino writers held in Los Angeles. Several of his students have gone on to staff positions on primetime TV shows, including “NCIS,” “Grimm,” and the reboot of “Full House.”

Related to his teaching efforts, he received the annual Impact Award for Outstanding Service and Commitment to Latino Writers, given by the National Hispanic Media Coalition. He judges for several writing contests, including the Warner Bros. Writers Program and the ABC Writing Program.

Social Media:

Diana Osberg
Mia Terra Retreats
Diana Osberg is a writer, adventurer and founder of Mia Terra Retreats. She co-wrote the screenplay for the award-winning feature THE JOURNEY. Her thriller VIRTUAL WITNESS is featured in the book “The Visual Mindscape of the Screenplay” by award-winning screenwriter Bill Boyle. Diana has worked in the entertainment industry for over thirty years in production, writing, acting and administration. She has traveled the world, often solo, sometimes as crew on a tall ship, and always as a world citizen. Through Mia Terra Retreats, she produces unique adventures to inspire writers, artists and creative souls. Pack a bag, charge your mobile device and come along on an adventure that will change your life.

Email Address: [email protected]
Web Address:
Social Media:, @MiaTerraRetreat

Stewart Blackburn

Stewart Blackburn, Hawaiian Shamanic teacher and practitioner, has studied shamanism for over twenty years, most recently with Serge Kahili King for the last ten years. In 2006, he was ordained as an Alaka’i in Dr. King’s Aloha International, making him a minister and teacher of Huna, the remarkable Hawaiian healing philosophy based on Aloha. He teaches classes and courses in self-empowerment, the Hawaiian Shamanism of Huna and various other classes in self-Love, Healing the Stories We Tell Ourselves, and Psychic Skills. He also counsels and mentors people looking to increase the level of joy and pleasure in their lives from the perspective of self-empowerment and personal responsibility.


Workshop Fees

Kalani is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization. Your stay here supports education, community arts programming, and Hawaiian culture preservation within the District of Puna. Kalani has grown to become the largest provider of services in Puna – thanks to the support from guests like you!

Kalani retreat rates are all-inclusive and provide access to all instruction and course activities, meals, accommodations, and use of Kalani's facilities including our 25-meter pool, hot tubs and sauna.

Writers who are accepted into the program can register with a $250 deposit (non-refundable) and pay in monthly installments.

Final payment is due by February 1, 2017.

EARLY BIRD SPECIAL: Book your retreat before Aug. 1, 2016 and receive a $500 discount!

Fees per person: Double Occupancy Single Occupancy
6 - Cottage n/a n/a
5 - Tropical Loft n/a n/a
4 - Tree House Room n/a n/a
3 - Bungalow Room n/a n/a
2 - Lodge Room (private bath) n/a n/a
1 - Lodge Room (shared bath) $ 3747 $ 3999

Triple Occupancy Available:
Lodge Room (shared bath): $3677

Additional lodging options may be available; please inquire upon registration if your preferred lodging type is not listed above.

Kamaʻāina Commuter: $3043
Kamaʻāina rates are all-inclusive and provide access to Kalani campus for all instruction and course activities, three meals per day, and use of Kalani's facilities including our 25-meter pool, hot tubs and sauna. A valid Hawaii state-issued ID or driver's license must be presented at check-in to receive the kama'aina rate.

Commuter (for those who opt to lodge off Kalani campus): $3579
Commuter rates are all-inclusive and provide access to Kalani campus for all instruction and course activities, three meals per day, and use of Kalani's facilities including our 25-meter pool, hot tubs and sauna.

Extend Your Stay at a Discount!
Additional nights can be added on to the beginning or end of this package at special discounted rates for retreat attendees. There is so much to explore on this incredible island - from the volcano and the astronomy centers on Mauna Kea to the tide pools, beaches, and hikes along the coast.  Kalani is always brimming with activity, with 50 classes a week, as well as special events.
If you require airport shuttle service, please contact Kalani Guest Services at 800-800-6886 or [email protected], at least one week in advance.

Because of the structure of our retreat packages, we are unable to pro-rate retreat fees for shortened stays.

Learn more about getting here.