If you caught yesterday’s post, you know two important things: 1) that I’ve resurfaced, and 2) that I just returned from the most amazing retreat experience ever. The Writing Away Retreat gave me the following:
- One-on-one time with YA author R.A. Nelson, which involved a manuscript critique plus answers to my hundred and one questions about the world of writing, publishing, agents, editors, and authors.
- One-on-one time with author/editor Lee Ann Ward of Champagne books, who also provided a manuscript critique, answers to another hundred and one questions, and great discussion about how the heck to balance being a mom, writer, and money-earner.
- A coaching session with Lisa Gates, who is a great actress as well as insightful (and funny) coach.
- Fantastic food, provided by Cicily.
- Days filled with writing, writing, and more writing, interspersed with time in the hot tub, creativity hikes, and the occasional nap. I plotted out an entire book and wrote 30+ pages. (Translation: I’m VERY happy!!)
- Encouragement, camaraderie, lots of info about the publishing world, and plain fun sprinkled between writing jags.
- And evenings of readings and discussions around the dining table and fireplace.
Sigh…it’s hard to express. I left, though, recharged and refreshed. Maybe more importantly, I left with a new sense of perspective and clearer priorities for this crazy writing life. And I left writing!
Writing retreats, home-grown or otherwise, are great. This one–if you’re ready for hours and hours of solid time, if you could use mentorship more than another conference, take a look at the Writing Away Retreat. It goes beyond great. It’s fantabulous!!!
PS–Thanks to Cicily for the photo, showing me enjoying a particularly good meal….