A Writers’ Retreat

Alaskan lake

Today’s Spin Cycle is all about a dream vacation. In a way, I’ve already been on my dream vacation. See that picture up there? The beautiful mountain lake? This was the view from our patio door for two nights in a row. I took that picture when we were on vacation in Alaska last summer.

Some day, I would love to have a writer’s retreat somewhere in a place as beautiful as Alaska. I would spend a week in a small cabin, sitting by the window, typing furiously, without any interruptions from my children or my husband–or the internet. My online access would definitely need to be limited.

I would venture out every morning to have breakfast at the cafe down the road. Maybe I would be able to wear my rain boots and walk, but I would have to be wary of moose. The owners of the cafe would know me by name, and they would have a steaming hot cup of caffe mocha ready for me, with a swirl on top.

hot chocolate swirl

After breakfast, I would head back to the cabin to write. And write and write and write. And nap. There must be napping. Then I would take a long stroll after my nap. For dinner, I would head over to the local pub and join my writer’s group. There would be a grizzly old-timer who would amaze us with his delicate poetry. Maybe a young widow working on her memoirs. A famous but reclusive novelist writing the next New York Times bestseller would join us, and another blogger, who would be writing a humorous book.

Since the Alaskan sun doesn’t set until well after 11:00 during June, I would stay up very late and become a night owl. I would read, read, and read, since a good writer always reads good books.

Alaska cabin window
Our cabin in Talkeetna, AK

My writer’s retreat wouldn’t have to be in Alaska. I would actually be afraid to take long strolls in Alaska because of the bears. And remember that beautiful mountain lake I took a photo of? I ran down the path at 10:00 at night to take that picture, making as much noise as I could to scare any bears that might be lurking in the arctic willows. It was easy to be noisy because I was also swatting giant mosquitoes for the whole 5 minutes I was outside.

I could be anywhere, really. I’ve always wanted to travel to Italy or Greece. Or Spain. Spain would be lovely. Some place where I could take long strolls along the beach to get my creative juices flowing would be wonderful.

After about a week of solitude (except for my writer group dinners), my family would join me. Then we would sight-see. Ed loves to see everything when we travel, so there’s not much lying around or napping when he’s in charge. On second thought, the writing retreat would need to be the second week of my vacation so that I will be able to rest up from the first part! I’ll finish my book, it will get published and be a big success, and I’ll travel around the country for book signings.

Everyone will ask me when my second book is coming out–and so I’ll have to go on a writer’s retreat again. This time, I’ll travel to a secluded island in the Caribbean. I’m sure Johnny Depp will have a room just for me.


Second Blooming

If you need a vacation, click the button above to see Gretchen’s vacation spots. They are lovely!

If you were going on a dream vacation, where would you go?


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20 Replies to “A Writers’ Retreat”

  1. Ohhhhhhhh that sounds HEAVENLY! Alaska is definitely on my bucket list, but I think my writers retreat would have to be spent in Scotland. I would sit at a centuries old desk by a roaring fire in a stone fireplace and type as I looked over the moors covered in heather and thistle. And take picnics where the mountains meet the loch. Okay now I'm drooling just thinking about it. I'm inspired!!!
    My recent post Feeling like a hot mess? Come sit by me!

  2. This is my exact dream vacation, too! I've always wanted to go to Alaska. Instead, when we can, we rent a villa (some are secluded cabins) through Eagle Ridge in Galena — though I'm sure I told you this before. When we went last March, the home we stayed in had a ping-pong table, so we didn't get much writing done!
    My recent post My Week in Review: February 25-22, 2013

  3. Oh yes, it's a perfect plan! I have been dreaming of a writer's retreat as well. I think my Italian tree house over the lavender field would be an excellent spot. I've even been considering getting a shed from the Home Depot and setting it up as a writer's shed in the back yard. Not nearly as romantic as your Alaskan cabin. sigh…

    You are linked!
    My recent post Spin Cycle: 11 Dream Vacations

  4. I love your idea of a writers retreat! I would love one on a lake somewhere. If it were somewhere in Europe, I would want to sight see and I would not want to write. Sign me up on the retreat email list – I'm in!
    My recent post Easy Baked Salmon

  5. Can I come?! Alaska looks beautiful! I don't know where my dream vacation is. My husband has been in medical school and residency for the last nine years of our marriage, so ANY vacation would be a dream! Visiting from SITS!

  6. Wow, what a surreal experience! In Jamaica, we are known for retreats up in our mountains (Blue Mountains) where the sweetest, most peaceful small boutique hotels are. I have been wanting to write a book for years and years, but "work" always gets in the way and now I have so much more time off….I know it takes dedication and time.

    Great Blog!

    All the best, Jeanine

  7. Alaska is my #1 dream vacation in life. I'm a huge moose fan/photographer but yes, you have to be wary. I'll never forget the day I got too close to one in New Hampshire because I had to get that perfect photo and a bunch of men ran yelling from a nearby restaurant to tell me to be careful. Anyway, I digressed. May we all find our perfect retreats..
    My recent post Let It Grow.

  8. I'm in. Just tell me when and where. I would SO love a writer's retreat. Now you have me thinking about googling writer's retreats to see if I can join any. Followed you from SITS sharefest.

  9. On your writing retreat, can I play the role of the famous and reclusive NYT bestselling author? Oh wait. I guess that means I have to sell a book first.

    Maybe I can play the other blogger writing the humorous book. 🙂

  10. I love that very first picture! My family visited Alaska last year and loved it. It was so beautiful and serene. I definitely want to return. I have to tell you that my family was also a little bit nervous about the bears- especially when we heard some had been sighted nearby. We even skipped a 1/4 mile walk to what I'm sure would have been a beautiful waterfall because my teens were convinced we would come face to face with a bear. I bet that was a terrifying walk to the lake!_

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