The idea for the workshop was born many years ago, probably the first time Benjamin Rosenbaum visited Ruth Nestvold in Stuttgart. They started tossing around the idea for a face-to-face workshop for English-language speculative fiction writers in Europe. But then a few years and some continent-hopping went by …

Many years later, Ruth started to contact various writers she’d gotten to know through online workshops, to see if there would be any interest. There was, and she began researching venues and created the first online incarnation of the group: a Yahoo! private forum and mailing list.

But it all dragged out, as things tend to do. We credit Jeff Spock with giving Ruth the necessary kick to actually get the first workshop off the ground. Unfortunately, last minute complications prevented him from being with the rest in our original castle. But he made up for it by organizing our largest incarnation to date, at Villa Diodati 3 in southern France.