Writers out there know that there are some really fancy writers retreats out there, where (for a fee) you can take a little vacation at a nice place where all you have to do is write, and all your meals are brought to you. Sort of like camp…but the goal is to get a lot of writing done. For a more low-cost twist, my friends Anne and Anna and I had a writer’s retreat, hosted by Anna at her house. This was my first retreat – a one-day affair. I brought molasses cinnamon cookies, which I had baked the day before instead of writing.
We each brought some ideas for writing prompts, only to find that we really weren’t in the mood for writing prompts. Instead we talked about our projects and what we’re struggling with at the moment, which I found very helpful. Then we ate pizza (fuel is important if you want to get any work done).
Then we actually sat and did some writing, in companiable quiet. I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to concentrate with friends in the room, but I was pleased with the outcome of the day: not just the pages I produced, but with the collegial feeling of the whole experiment. Writing is a lonely business; it was nice to take it out of my office for a change, and hang out in the company of other writers, all of us doing our thing. And it’s fun to think of all the various ideas floating around this table: ghosts, fanatic obsession, baby donkeys…
And every writer’s retreat needs a mascot. Our mascot is the baby bunny that lives near Anna’s house and eats her sunflower buds.