Thursday, January 28, 2010

My Town Monday: Writers' Retreat, Oceanside, CA

Sorry to have been so MIA. i so don't do famous is taking up A LOT of my time. Just ask my family!

And then there are the usual suspects like water polo practice, swim team practice, piano lessons, SAT classes. Child #4 is giving a speech on Harriet Tubman. Child #2 is in finals week. Child #1 is over mono (yay!) and starting a new job.

So....last weekend I went on a writers' retreat with the San Diego SCBWI (Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators). My critique partners also came along. The retreat was at the San Luis Rey Mission in Oceanside, CA. The mission was built circa 1798.

This is a typical room. Fairly sparse. Which was fine because I was there to write. Poor internet connection. Which was better than fine because I wasn't tempted to skip around in cyberspace, thus wasting precious writing time.

Denny's Chick Critique Partner Kathy Krevat hard at work in the room.

Denny's Chick Critique Partner Kelly Hayes hanging out in the hall.

A view of the grounds. The setting was beautiful and peaceful. I loved the sound of the clock bells.

I will tell you something I learned about monks. They are not good cooks. No doubt they excel at praying. And this group seems pretty talented at gardening as well. But they definitely do not take cooking seriously. Kelly, Kathy and I snuck out for a delicious Thai dinner on Saturday evening. I know our secret is safe with you.

All in all, I had a very productive weekend.

And I came home to a google alert about Green Girl in Wisconsin's contest for a signed copy of i so don't do spooky. Thank you, Green Girl! You are very generous. And your blog is uberentertaining!

If you haven't checked out this week's My Town Monday blog, you can do so late. With me. :)

14 comments:

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I've always wanted to do a retreat like that--but in my fantasy the food is good. Maybe at another place then...
Sounds like the perfect place to be productively writing.

Charles Gramlich said...

I really really want to go on one of these retreats. Unfortunately, they almost all seem to take place during the school year and that's out for me.

Rebecca said...

I LOVE how in the first picture Kathy has the most important writing aids of all: french press coffee AND diet coke.

Kristina P. said...

That sounds like a cool experience.

Anonymous said...

The monks don't do good coffee either. :-) I had to bring my own. But the combo of caffeine and quiet helped me write a bunch!

Kathy

Bee said...

Those are some nasty bedspreads! You and your writing partners are obviously very dedicated . . . 'cause I would have been strolling the garden instead!

(sorry that I have been MIA as well)

Cassandra said...

Wow, very interesting and surprising. I wish I could go to a writer's conference...is it weird for a minor to go to a writer's conference? Most seem to be geared towards adults...

Sarah Laurence said...

You were a writing monk – love it! Also that you snuck out for Thai food. A retreat from the retreat. Fun!

Teresa said...

I loved the picture of garden. Hope you got lots written and enjoyed the Thai food. Did the spices energize your brains?

Realliveman said...

Very cool blog! I will be back for more

Barrie said...

Cassandra, I think you'd have to find a writing retreat that's geared toward kids. Maybe a camp????

Barrie said...

Thank you, Realliveman. My children are constantly telling me how cool I am. Especially my teens. Ack. Yikes. A bolt of lightning it aiming for me!! :)

Barrie said...

Charles, I wonder if you could just organize a retreat at a time that's convenient for you? I can see you doing that.

Barrie said...

Teresa--maybe it was the spices that energized my brain. That Thai food was sooo good!