Two weekends ago, my friends Sarah and Rosemary and I all took off for our second writing retreat at Sarah's family cabin.
Before we left, Rosemary got to spend the afternoon at my incredibly messy house (pre-awesome living room makeover). Sweet girl, she didn't mind at all. ;) She also got to meet Middle Gal and Little Gal (Oldest Gal was at Sarah's house celebrating Sarah's youngest daughter's birthday) and Teddy, too.
Once Sarah got off of work, we piled into her car, stopped at Subway for dinner, and drove up the mountain for a few days of nothing but writing, brainstorming, and food. Chocolate and ice cream may or may not have been involved. ;)
The sunset was so breathtaking on the way up that we pulled off the road to get a few pictures. A perfect rainbow sherbet sunset. ;)
The cozy cabin from two different views:
Little M came along this time, so of course he wanted to pose in front of the cabin. ;)
I didn't take too many pictures (and actually, this one and several of the others are from Sarah and Rosemary...thanks, girls!), but here's the room where the writing magic happened. ;)
And here was where I slept this time. It's called "the hole," but it's actually quite comfy. It's a spot underneath the staircase (rather Harry Potteresque, but much nicer) and behind a shelf. It was quiet and cozy underneath the three layers of sleeping bags. I slept like a log...especially since I didn't have to listen for a puppy who needed to go out for a potty break! ;) My favorite thing was reading my book before conking out for the night, although apparently one night the glow of my flashlight reached the upstairs window and startled Sarah, who was sleeping in the living room. ;)
Here we are on a walk to clear our minds and stretch our sore writing muscles (backs, shoulders, and fingers). ;) You'll notice I was wise this time and took care to stand behind my skinnier friends. Much better. ;)
A few pics of the lovely scenery:
The weather varied from rainy to beautifully sunny while we were there. A perfect combination. :)
Since Rosemary and I have birthdays in September and October, we decided to exchange birthday gifts this time around. I also got Sarah an unbirthday gift, because I didn't want her to feel left out. ;)
I got Rosemary, who is a dragon lover, two Beenie Boo dragons and a dragon necklace. I got Sarah two Funko pops, one from The Nightmare Before Christmas and one from Labyrinth (two of her favorite movies). I put Sarah's gift in a Star Wars Rogue One bag from the Disney Store, as she is also a Star Wars fan. ;) (Sorry, I didn't get pics of the gifts I gave.) :(
Rosemary gave me this great t-shirt, which I wore the very next day:
Isn't it perfect for me? :D
(Sorry about the wrinkles, that's the way it air-dried.)
And Sarah gave me this:
It's kind of a joke from Mount Hermon this past March. I took my Poo-pourri and kept going on and on about how awesome it was, so Sarah got me another bottle for my birthday. I couldn't have been more thrilled. Seriously, people. This stuff works. I'm not a fan of their commercials, but I do like their product.
And now I'm going to move on before this turns into an awkward infomercial. ;}
Sarah also got me a wonderful cd by the Gettys. I love their music!
On our last day there, Rosemary got this cute picture of Little M with her three dragons. (The two plushies are from me.) It was an odd role reversal to watch someone else taking photos of toys. ;D
The weekend was a big success for all of us. We each were able to tackle upcoming projects that needed our attention. One of the things I valued the most was being able to read my first few chapters to Sarah and Rosemary and get their immediate feedback. When I struggled with the dialogue and character motivation in one of the chapters, we brainstormed about it over dinner. I attacked it after I'd finished eating, and then reread it to both of them. It was so nice having their input. I've officially decided I want them to stay in my house all the time so I can be a better writer. Hee hee.
In return, I was able to provide feedback for both of them. There's something so wonderful about sharing your writing in an environment that is safe and uplifting. Both Rosemary and Sarah have great insights and are talented writers, so it's nice being able to bounce things off of them. Plus, I get to hear some of their works in progress, which is always a treat. ;)
We've officially decided that this needs to become a regular thing for us. ;) This weekend away was just what we all needed. I can't wait for the next one!