Sunday, August 8, 2010

Back in Biz

Hi all! Hope your Julys were fun/productive. I hoped to be back blogging a week ago but instead went on a writing retreat to a friend's cabin on the far, far side of Missouri, with no internet connection. So my "unplugged" extended an extra week, and just as well! I am now 25K words into my YA dystopian novel. (Pause for self-congratulations here.)

In case you're wondering/jealous, here is how the writing retreat(s) work. I team up with a colleague from work who also likes to write, mostly academically. We go about once a year. The last time we took an entire week and drove to her sister's cabin on the far, far side of Missouri was over two years ago, and I spent it editing my academic book (bleuch!). If we "only" have a 3-day weekend, we instead rent a cabin much closer (but still in Missouri, because it's purdy).

We split the meal plans, and shop for extravagant foodstuffs. We go for a walk every day that weather permits. We get straight to our respective work right after breakfast, break for lunch, and then continue to work until 6pm. Then, we have a glass of wine, compare notes about our day's work/frustrations, make a gourmet feast, and settle in for a movie. My favorite movie of this trip was re-watching Whale Rider, in case you were wondering.

On the way there and back we passed Mansfield, the later life home of Laura Ingalls Wilder, about whom I wrote earlier. We resisted going to visit, because my mother is visiting from the Antipodes later this year, and I would like to see the Ingalls houses for the first time with her and my daughter. Daughter has become entranced by the experience of reading Little House with me this month, and I have the TV pilot for the series awaiting the end of the first book.

I look forward to reading your blogs over the next day or two, and resuming the writing and parenting business as usual!


  1. That sounds fantastic! And 25K is great! Do you know what length you're shooting for? I've been doing some brainstorming for my YA novel . . .

    And the retreat is such a good idea. I need it for the dissertation. I should set up a weekend . . . I have one friend who would do it if she wasn't going to give birth in a couple of weeks (and she already had twins!).

    Glad you had such a great week!

  2. Thanks, GEW! I think I'm heading for 70K or so. I am following a plot outline but allowing for occasional detours...

    I *highly* recommend the retreat. It felt like a sabbatical, when you can get up in the a.m and say "now, where was I?"