Kalani TV Writing Retreat:
Begin a New TV Pilot Script with Expert Guidance and the Power of Aloha

April 1-8, 2017 – Big Island, Hawaii​

Booking Closed

Do you want to write a TV pilot, but you’re feeling lost and burned out? Join Geoff Harris, former VP of Story and Writer Development at NBC, on the Big Island of Hawaii to begin a new TV pilot script, learn to write from a place of Soul 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.

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, waterfalls, and more
  • Savor fresh, delicious meals prepared with love
  • Breathe the freshest air in the world
  • Discover the richness of Hawaiian culture

What will I learn?

At Kalani TV Writing Retreat, you’ll learn a deeper meaning of Aloha and Huna practices to guide you through your writing journey.

Join Geoff Harris, former VP of Story and Writer Development at NBC, on this transformational retreat to create a new TV pilot, from pitch to breaking story, to outline and more.

You can look forward to a challenging and fun week of:

  • Writers room sessions
  • Story workshops
  • One-on-one mentoring with Geoff
  • Individual writing time
  • Hawaiian cultural activities
  • A group excursion
  • Fresh, delicious food served with Aloha

I need some Aloha.

Register me now!


TV Writing Program

Facilitator: Geoff Harris, former NBC Creative Executive

In daily writers room sessions, you will:

  • Pitch your pilot ideas
  • Write and read your loglines (series and pilot)
  • Break story
  • Write and go over your treatment
  • Outline your pilot

We’ll schedule private consultations for you with Geoff to discuss your script.

During the week, you’ll have lots of time to write on the grounds of the gorgeous Kalani Retreat Center.

Huna Healing Circle: “Healing the Stories We Tell Ourselves”

Facilitator: Stewart Blackburn, Hawaiian Shamanic teacher and practitioner

We all tell stories about who we are and how we came to be right here. But many times we tell stories that make us feel bad, and it doesn’t have to be that way.

As humans, we can create any story about who we are. Why not tell stories that let us love ourselves? The ability to take charge of our stories is a critical piece in taking up our personal power. Without this skill, we are pawns to the manipulative stories of others.

In this workshop we will:

  • Explore the power of the stories we tell ourselves
  • Dissect our own process of story making
  • Find the value in the painful things we’ve experienced
  • Learn how to honestly move from victim to hero in how we look at ourselves

This workshop quickly goes to the heart of the ways we sabotage our happiness and is a special time for individual healing using the Hawaiian shamanic arts as made popular by Serge Kahili King.

Hula Class

Experience the beauty and power of this uniquely Hawaiian art form that combines storytelling with dance, chant, and music. Everyone from beginners to experienced dancers are invited to learn about the hula, from its basic steps to a full hula dance by the end of the session.

Huna Healing Circle: “Finding Your Muse Within”

Facilitator: Stewart Blackburn, Hawaiian Shamanic teacher and practitioner

This workshop is about finding the fun and joy in the deepest levels of our being so that we can create from a place of Soul.

When we are experiencing pleasure, we are connected to our deepest core, our Higher Mind or Aumakua. Whatever we call the non-physical parts of ourselves, it is from these places that we have access to inspiration and insight in abundance. Thus pleasure stimulates creativity. The sexy little Muses were inspirational because they stimulated pleasure.

In this workshop we will work in the context of pleasure as we access our core, connect with the source of inspiration, and leave our fears and doubts behind. We will also explore connecting to those beings, real or imagined, who for us represent masters of what we want to do and walk in their shoes for a little bit.

Lava Boat Tour

This sunrise lava boat tour is bound to be one of the highlights of your life. We will witness lava flows from Kilauea Volcano in the pre-dawn darkness. As the sun rises, the sunlight will reveal the volcano and the beautiful volcanic coastline of the Volcanoes National Park, with its volcanic black sand beaches, lava sea cliffs, lava arches, sea life, the ever changing Puna Coast, Junglescapes and earth’s newest lands. As lava enters the sea, it unleashes a lava show of eruptive splatter cones, oozing rivers of lava, crackling A’a lava, underwater upwellings, erupting lava bombs, volcanic steam explosions, and more.

Note: If the lava isn’t flowing, the boat isn’t going. In this case, we’ll substitute a comparable tour.

Awesome! I want to experience the power of Aloha.

Sign me up!

Your Home in Paradise

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

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

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.

Kalani celebrates Hawaiian nature, culture, wellness and spiritual growth, and provides a comfortable and nourishing atmosphere for personal transformation and empowered learning.

Your Private Oasis

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

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

You’ll have your own private 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.

Luscious Meals Prepared with Aloha

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.

Optional Amenities

  • Wellness treatments
  • Yoga classes
  • Black sand beach
  • Thermal springs
  • Waterfalls
  • Snorkeling
  • Clothing-optional swimming pool

Retreat Schedule

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

Sunday, April 2-Friday, April 7
Retreat Program

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

What’s Included

  • 7 nights in a lovely private 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
  • 2 Huna story 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! (or similar tour if the lava is not flowing)

What’s Not Included

  • Flights
  • Airport transfers*
  • Tips, souvenirs, and other items not listed in the inclusions 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.

Yay! I'm going to write my TV pilot in Hawaii!

I'm signing up right now.


Geoff Harris was Vice President of Story and Writer Development at NBC, where he honed his skill for developing writers and scripts for twelve years. In that role, which spanned NBC’s most prosperous and creatively thriving years, he managed the network’s Story Department, discovered talented new writers, and collaborated in the development of primetime shows, including comedies, dramas, movies and mini-series.

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.

Geoff also teaches screenwriting in a low residency MFA program at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, NM. In addition, over the years, he has taught classes in screenwriting and script analysis at several universities, including the American Film Institute, and in web-series writing at Cal State University, Los Angeles.

He judges for several writing contests, including the Warner Bros. Writers Program and the ABC Writing Program, and guest-blogs about television writing on the Save the Cat! website.

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.

Diana Osberg is the owner and founder of Mia Terra Retreats. She produces extraordinary retreats to inspire writers, artists and creative souls. Diana is a screenwriter and has worked in the entertainment industry for over 30 years in production, creative development and administration.

She is a world-traveler, or as she likes to put it, a “world citizen,” and loves to go on unusual adventures. She has helmed a 165 meter barque off anchor and into the Strait of Gibraltar under the command of the ship’s captain. She has sailed as crew on tall ships in New Zealand, Spain and the Canary Islands, participated in an English immersion program with Spanish business people in Spain, and tracked Mustangs in the wilds of the Nevada mountains on horseback. She has kissed the Blarney Stone in Ireland, but did not get the gift of the gab. She’ll have to kiss it again, I guess.

It was a great week. Diana put together a very informative and enjoyable journey for us all. She put the “Treat” in retreat.

Rory O'Connor

Writers on the Water Screenwriting Retreat

Yikes! I want a spot on this retreat.

Sign me up!

Kalani Retreat Center