Saturday, I got the opportunity to go to a day-long retreat with PDX Writers at this glorious place (McMenamins Edgefield). It was such a welcome break from the ordinary–it was just the thing right now.
I got really lucky–I’m unemployed right now, so I wasn’t going to be able to go to this, but I got a scholarship. It felt like such a wonderful luxury. This is my second writing retreat–last year when I was employed I was able to go to the PDX Writers weekend-long retreat. I’m thinking I need to schedule in more regular breaks from the everyday for myself–it doesn’t have to be a fancy retreat. I could do something like this for myself now and then. I think we should all do this–our writing will love it! And doing something different is a great way to shake up the writing and get things moving.
During the prompted writings I got some character work done on someone who’s been living in my head for a while and has lots of stories to tell. In the afternoon, we had free time for walking, thinking, writing on our own. I got some planning done for NaNoWriMo, so I think I’m ready to start tomorrow.
But that’s tomorrow. I’m sure I’ll be back writing about NaNo throughout November. For now, here are more pictures of the lovely writing escape. I’m off to get ready for the trick-or-treaters. Happy Halloween!
Glimpses of a day of writing
This is the first installment of a new thing I’m trying out–rambly, chatty reports on my writing life. I’m hoping sharing what I’m doing will get me doing writing things more regularly.
So this is a little bit of two pieces of my writing life. Notebooks and writing practice.
Last year I decorated the cover of the composition book I was doing hand written exercises in, and I liked it so much I decided I need to do that for all of them. I decided to call them “Words” and number the volumes. It seems appropriate. I just started volume two a couple of weeks ago on my birthday.
I started Volume 2 at a writing group I participate in sporadically, PDX Writers (I started the last one at their Fall retreat last October–it’s becoming a tradition). I really love PDX Writers. Even if I only get to a Saturday workshop once a month, it’s a real touchstone in my writing life. It’s a place where I feel welcome, where people remember my name even when I’ve been away for a while. And most importantly it’s a place to share my words and hear everyone else’s words with no judgement, no pressure, nothing but words of encouragement. It’s fantastic.
The Saturday workshops are drop-ins–relaxed and rich with prompts and great readings. Today’s was extra special, though. PDX Writers bases their workshops and retreats on the Amherst Writers and Artists method, and today’s workshop was part of a fundraising event called Write Around the World. Amherst writing groups all around the world used the same prompts to do their writing today so we got to be part of a worldwide event.
One of the best things about going to a Saturday drop-in is that I always come away feeling excited about my writing. Tonight I’m writing about here to keep the enthusiasm going. Tomorrow, I am going to work on some NaNoWriMo planning, and that needs plenty of enthusiasm. And M&Ms. But mostly enthusiasm.