|The cabin (though I didn't have the snow)|
I prepared for this weekend in a couple of ways. In case you can set aside some solitary time to write, here's what I did:
I started out with a shot in the arm. I met with one of my critique groups. Talking about writing always spurs me to sit down and actually write. Normally, after crit group, I go home and end up buried in household tasks. This time, I went straight to my retreat.
I left some things home. Namely my Kindle. I'd be way too tempted to curl up and read if it came along. Instead, I brought some Writer's Digest magazines for those moments where I couldn't stand to write anymore. I left uncomfortable clothes and (most) junk food, too.
I used a tried and true technique. To keep myself focused, I used the Pomodoro Technique. This involves setting a timer for 50 minutes of work, then taking a ten minute break. You can do anything for 50 minutes! On my breaks, I took a brisk walk (this old ranch is beautiful!), got a snack, or checked my email.
I'll be heading home in a few hours (when I finish my next chapter).
Getting away by myself is great, but it's not perfect. In The Lonely Cabin Myth, I wrote about why I'm sometimes more productive when I'm writing in the middle of a hectic life. Maybe you experience the same thing.
Do you get more done when you go away by yourself? Or does fighting for your writing time bring better results? What else would you bring on a writing retreat?
|The beautiful view I enjoyed. That's Pikes Peak in the distance.|