This past weekend, my sister and I packed up our bags and headed down to a tiny riverside town, about an hour away.
Both of us live busy lives and as we get older it’s becoming increasingly harder to dedicate full days to writing, or even just catching up, such is life when you’re a responsible adult I am quickly learning.
Responsibilities to one side, we decided that given enough notice we could both manage to spend a weekend together and to devote a few days to writing, inspiration and the pursuit of creativity.
Now, I’m not going to tell you that we spent a full two days writing without rest, because that would be a lie. What we did do though was kick-start a whole bunch of work that both of us had been putting off for far too long.
I began editing my novel (!!!) and with some notes from my sister, who is the only one to have seen it in its entirety, I was able to really get stuck into the editing process and rediscover my work. Being in such a tranquil setting was immensely conducive to writing. The cottage we rented was set quite far back into the bush and the only sounds other than our respective keyboards was the trilling of native bird-life and the solemn hum of fat bumblebees in the rhododendron over the fence.
One of my favourite things about writing my novel has been talking to people about it, and my favourite person to talk about it with is my sister. So while I didn’t perhaps get as much writing done as I had intended, I certainly got a lot of thoughts out of my head. She read me the latest chapter of her work in progress and it was so fun to see how different our styles are, yet how much we love each other’s work. It’s a sentiment that definitely reflects us as people too.
All in all, I could recommend nothing more than taking some time out of your regular life to ease a bit closer to nature and hopefully a bit closer to your chosen craft. We’re hoping to try and fit a retreat in every six months or so, so stay tuned for our next adventure.
Here are my top 5 moments from our 2020 Summer Writing Retreat:
- Talking about our novels on the various drives we did over the weekend and getting excited over each other’s work
- Spending time in a hot tub in the middle of the bush, watching all the beautiful birdlife (this was ever so slightly dampened by the fact that we discovered a huntsman in the filter…)
- Finding out the cottage we were renting is owned by one of my favourite Tasmanian picture book author/illustrators
- Cups of tea and biscuits out on the veranda in the early morning, working on our writing
- Our day trip to Bruny Island, reminiscing on our childhood and becoming even more inspired
Chat soon x