Sunday, August 15, 2010

SOLA’s 2010 Nottoway Retreat

Writers’ retreats are intended to provide writers with a moment out of time, a chance to get away from the preoccupations and stresses of daily life and simply focus on writing. SOLA (the South Louisiana chapter of RWA) holds their annual retreat at Nottoway Plantation, which is up the Mississippi River from New Orleans, in sugar cane country. (We won't talk about the year Hurricane Gustav took off the plantation’s roof.)

The Nottoway Retreat is a time for writers to hone their craft in workshops, to relax with other writers, to soak up the ambience of one of the South’s most gracious antebellum homes, to eat fine food, drink wine, listen to a certain inimitable Cajun raconteur, and, um, line dance (no, you don't get to see pictures of that).

This year Steve and I gave a workshop on plotting, but we went up a couple of days early just to relax, explore the plantation, walk along the river levee, and generally have time away from stuff. (That's a sugar cane field beyond Steve, in case you don't recognize it.)

I came home energized to get back to work on my Lady of Shalott book (I still haven’t settled on a title) and yet sublimely relaxed. Which I suppose is the whole point of a writers’ retreat, so I can honestly say it worked!


orannia said...

One day I would really like to visit all those old plantation houses..

Thank you so much for the photos Candy! Am glad you & Steve had a lovely time. And good luck with that title!

Charles Gramlich said...

Energized and relaxed. Perfect!

Steve Malley said...

Awww, YAY! Now write, Candy, write like the wind! :)

Pax Deux said...

In spanish, there is a saying that goes "Dress me slowly because I am in a hurry" -- which has something to do with taking your time to do things well and not having to do them over again.

August by the sea is the best "slow down to get work done fast" recipe for me. I am happy that Nottoway worked for you!

cs harris said...

Orannia, they are fun and interesting. Steve and I agreed we need to start making trips to see more of them.

Charles, unfortunately it didn't seem to help my difficulties with this third scene.

Steve, I'm at a dead calm.

Pax Deux, That's a nice saying. Maybe what I need is my lake.

Barbara Caridad Ferrer said...

I've been DYING to go to a writer's retreat or a workshop weekend or something. Whether it's organized through one of my writing groups (God love RWA for being so proactive in that sense) or whether it's something other writing friends and I pull together on our own, I don't care. But I've been really feeling the need to get away and just give myself, I don't know... permission to sink into writing, knowing there aren't going to be any of the Real World distractions around.

And that plantation is GORGEOUS.

cs harris said...

Barbara, they do one every year, and if there's space, nonSOLA members are welcome.

Keisha Johnson said...

Awww, YAY! Now write, Candy, write like the wind! :)

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