Writers retreat…

S, H, D and I, members of a writing group comprised only of our four selves, decided to spend last weekend, hole up in luxurious comfort and write, work on manuscripts, share meals and leisure in the late evening hours.

It was the most revivifying getaway; just what I needed to get down to polishing a piece of creative non-fiction weighing on me for the last several months. Rumpole bought us a new to us laptop. He felt I should have ease in editing my work. I decided to wing the process long-hand; a way which always helps me attain the meditative focus I need when working.

We stayed at D’s Mom’s waterfront Belcarra home. It perched up-hill from a rocky shore. The vista from my room was of Deep Cove across the inlet and of the tip of Belcarra at the end of the little bay where the house was situated. Ravens called; water lapped the shore with hypnotic regularity. The resident cats perched on lawnchairs next to me where I wrote at a patio table overlooking a delightful garden.
My writer friends were tremendous companions for a weekend of self-imposed silence and labour.

After dinner, we gathered in the comfortable lounge, shared progress reports and played “dictionary”. Inventive wordsmiths come up with some truly hilarious word definitions. “lanuginous” was one word for which invented definitions caused us to laugh hysterically and for me, to roll on the floor in helpless abandon. Some of the definitions cannot be told in decorous company, they were so risque.

I feel rather pleased with my progress last weekend. I rewrote and edited for submission an @1500 word non-fiction piece. It took about 12 or so rewrites, edits and continuous polishing. I received some excellent advice from my retreat companions and acted on them to arrive at a (for now) finished bit of writing I am not ashamed of submitting. It is as clean and spare as I could make it. And I feel more confident of the editing process.

All in all, it was a great weekend!

11 Responses to “Writers retreat…”

  1. tysdaddy Says:

    Very cool! It has been a very long time since I spent some time alone just writing. Sure there are blog posts and whatnot, but not the sort of writing I need to be doing. How awesome that you had the opportunity to get away and polish . . .

  2. suburbanlife Says:

    Thanks, Brian – it sure was a great opportunity. Heck, your posts are so polished! You are one heck of a writer always thoughworthy. G

  3. Deborah Barlow Says:

    I was delighted to read this update on you and what you are doing. Good luck!

  4. suburbanlife Says:

    Deborah – Thank you! G

  5. Nita Says:

    I think I must have missed this post because I was on a break. In fact I came here to ask you why you aren’t posting on your blog! Great to hear that you are writing!
    This week-end you write about seems a real delight. I wish I had a group of writer friends too. I had joined a writers group some time back but gave it up soon as the others were not serious writers, but had joined the group for other reasons.

  6. onemoreoption Says:


  7. christine Says:

    What a great weekend! I think we can learn so much from each others’ feedback. On blogs it’s not the same thing. We share our thoughts and opinions, but don’t critique the actual writing. Good to hear life is good, G!

  8. suburbanlife Says:

    Nita – I also am glad to see you writing again. Have missed your frequent postings. I hope you are witing more for publications, as you have a real talent for exploring topics which raise good discussions and revive community involvement. I just wish you were in my writers’ group. We would like your input and experience. Besides which you would make a great friend to keep in touch with regularly. We do share a lot at our meetings, and generally encourage each other in many areas of our lives. G

    Onemoreoption – thank you so much! G

    Christine – we plan many more such getaways, also to have writers come and give us critiques. Yoy are so right about blogs – but then they servs different purposes. I am currently on a writing roll, being disciplined about it; it feels so good! G

  9. ybonesy Says:

    The getaway sounds fabulous. I wonder why it is that we so often need these kinds of breaks, with a new and beautiful setting as inspiration, to do our best writing. I used to give myself a once-a-year retreat, just me and no one else (except other retreatants) but I haven’t done that for almost two years, maybe three. Yes, three, in fact. I am overdue.

    Keep us posted of your progress, G. Am pleased to hear that you are submitting your work. You are a great writer.

  10. lookingforbeauty Says:

    I was going to say, Idyllic, but rather it sounds like you worked your butt off revising and polishing. Best wishes for a few prizes in the competition field.

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