Writing Retreat

So this weekend I was off with 3 writing friends on a retreat to an adorable Victorian cottage in Eureka Springs!  (no pics at the moment–we spent most of the time wearing sweats and messy hair as we wrestled with our WIPs…).  It was a wonderful time, with lots of work done and lots of wine on the big front porch in the evenings.  I am in the middle of my newest project, the first in my Elizabethan-set mystery series (coming out from NAL next year!!), and this was a great way to get a few thousand words ahead.  Plus it was fun!

So I started wondering if authors of the past did something like this.  All I could remember was how in high school a friend of mine (another future English major) had an old, grainy VHS tape of a movie called Haunted Summer, about the time Byron and the Shelleys (and others) spent a few weeks together at Lake Geneva in Switzerland, where a dare on a rainy night gave birth to Frankenstein.  This is what IMDB says about that movie:

 In 1815, authors Lord Byron, Mary Shelley and Percy Shelley get together for some philosophical discussions, but the situation soon deteriorates into mind games, drugs and sex.

My own retreat was not nearly so interesting….

As I looked around this morning trying to find more info on this famous writing retreat, I found a great article from the NYTimes’ travel section–it’s really fascinating and makes me want to go to Lake Geneva right away:  Lake Geneva as Byron and Shelley Knew It

Where would you want to go on retreat?  What authors would you take with you??  (I think Byron and Shelley would be fun, but probably not so conducive to getting much work done!  I might go with the Brontes…)

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Melanie Meadors
10 years ago

I’m going on a retreat this weekend! There will be between 15-20 of us from the local RWA chapter. Hopefully we get a lot of work done. The retreat will be in rural CT, the place looks lovely.

Janet Mullany
10 years ago

Laura Dern as Claire Clermont???? That’s mindboggling. Why?

I rather think the BBC did something like this in the late 1960s (drugs, sex, the sonata). I thought it was pretty cool.

Amanda McCabe/Laurel McKee

It’s been a while since I saw it, but I seem to remember she cavorted around skinny-dipping a lot 🙂

Louisa Cornell
10 years ago

I think this film is definitely due a remake!

I’m thinking a writing retreat with Jane Austen, Mark Twain, and William Faulkner might be fun. And extremely insightful and educational.

I’ve never actually been on a writers’ retreat, but I really want to one day!

Diane Gaston
10 years ago

I am so in favor of writers retreats! My trip to Lady Jane’s Salon in NC was like a writers retreat. Darlene Gardner and I rode together and had 4 hours of talking writing and then when we spent the night with Karen Anders and Lisa Dyson, our old critique group was back together again..at a sleepover.

I also loved my writers retreat with other writers at Berkeley Springs. I think there is something about being in the woods, in the mountains, rather than, say, the beach. I love the beach but that would probably mean I’d be more distracted from the work.

I’d love to do a writers retreat with the Riskies!!!! What fun that would be!!

Elena Greene
10 years ago

Ooh, I love writer’s retreats! My local writing friends and I do at least one a year. Writing during the day, wine and romantic films in the evening. How can you lose?

A retreat with Jane Austen and the Brontes would be very amusing–their personalities and styles would clash in interesting ways, I suspect. But I wouldn’t get any writing done!

10 years ago

Eureka Springs would be a good place to go for a retreat. It is lovely and has that wonderful turn of the century feel.

A writing retreat with Mark Twain, Agatha Christie, and Henry David Thoreau. It would certainly be interesting. What an interesting group they would be.

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