It’s the last day of a 5-day Writescape writing retreat. The sun is shining in the window, and reflecting off the lake just 5 metres from my cabin.
I’m reflecting, too. (Okay. What I’m really doing is taking a break, having a stretch and enjoying the view.)
There’s nothing like getting away to write, either alone or with other writers. A change of scenery and a little solitude lures my submerged ideas to the surface. I have time to hook them, land them and in some cases, throw them back to grow a little bigger.
When the ideas aren’t biting, creativity exercises make new ideas swim around. A couple of items from the Inspiration Station have been the perfect bait for a couple of new stories.
Sometimes you just need time to sit and think. As a kid, I used to lie on my back and watch the clouds go by. Just stare into the blue and dream. Watch wave after wave curl up. Listen to the trees whisper secrets. I seldom find that quiet time at home.
I’ve spent hours mulling things over this weekend. How to revise one novel. What I need to do, and what I need to know to outline another. Neither task is complete, but the uninterrupted thinking time will make the everyday doing time more productive.
Tasting the words
Sometimes you need to share. Reading raw or polished work with other writers helps you test the waters and practise reading to an audience. What touched them? What made them laugh? Do I read too fast or too quietly? (Yes, and yes.) It leads to new insights and often, very good advice!
You learn as much from listening. Writers start with the same raw materials. We work with the same tools. But no one puts words together in quite the same way.
Time to go
I’ve packed my bags. I’m still packing my words. But I’ll come back to Spring Thaw again next spring. The fishing’s great!