Recently Elizabeth Corva and I met up for a Writer’s Retreat. It wasn’t one of those big, fancy things you sometimes read about, but rather just the two of us sequestering ourselves in a nice cabin in the woods and discussing our works in progress.
And oh, how we discussed! I got to read parts of an early draft of a story Elizabeth will incorporate into a future book, and it left me more in love with her character Silver Blackwood than I was before. It was also great to be able to bounce ideas off her about my next book, Heart of Gold, and get her reactions first-hand instead of by email or computer chat. Since I’ve hit a wall with the book which pushes its publication date back, being able to get Elizabeth’s feedback was totally invaluable! Because of it, I’m once again writing my fingers off each day, more excited about the book than ever.
Besides writing and talking about writing, we did tons of other stuff, too. Here are
5 Cool Things We Did On Our Writer’s Retreat
- Played the music loud. There are four cabins where we stayed for our Writer’s Retreat, but we were the only people in residence. This was a complete and total boon for us since we didn’t have to worry about being quiet. And you know that when two Rocker chicks get together there will be lots of music. We cranked it up and enjoyed every second of it!
2. Communed with nature. Even though it was hot as blue blazes that week, it was still a joy to step outside and see nothing but trees, hear nothing but birds, and just soak in the sunshine. Unfortunately, I attracted the attention of every horsefly in the state. Apparently I resembled a female horsefly looking for action. I was divebombed each time I set foot out the door. It took three days after I got home to stop instinctively ducking in anticipation of an attack when I went outside.
3. Hiked trails. There were a number of hiking trails where we stayed, and despite the heat we traversed several of them. One of these trails came equipped with a suspension bridge. Something I neglected to tell Elizabeth about was my utter and complete fear of heights, and this bridge spanned an arroyo that was pretty darn deep. As I stood at the foot of this bridge, frozen in terror, Elizabeth literally danced her way across the thing as it swayed and rocked. I finally worked up the courage to get myself across it, and was really proud of myself until I realized the trail looped back and I’d have to go across it again. Have mercy. I made it, though, and kudos to Elizabeth for not laughing her ass off at me.
4. Indulged in relaxation. Until I was in the woods with nothing around but trees (and horseflies) I didn’t realize how stressed I’d been. Worry about the fact that I couldn’t write any coherent words on Heart of Gold combined with the renovations we’re making on our house left me tense, scatterbrained, and unproductive. Being able to kick back with Elizabeth for a week cured all that. It was therapeutic to take my coffee outside each morning, breathe in the air, listen to the birds, dodge horseflies, and realize things were pretty good.
5. Got up close and personal with some guitars.
Since Elizabeth’s flight was out of Memphis, we took the time to tour the Gibson Guitar Factory there. Two Rocker chicks turned loose in a guitar factory; what could possibly go wrong? It was a great tour, full of interesting information and tidbits, and we got to ooh and ahh over all those gorgeous guitars.
All in all, one of the best weeks of my life! It was great to spend time with Elizabeth, hammer out some ideas, and have fun. I totally can’t wait to do it again!