How To Create Your Own Writing Retreat

Stage32.com
7 min readMar 24, 2023

I have been trying to find places to write since I was in diapers. In the picture below, I’m trying to get up the stairs and back to my bedroom to get to the crayons and construction paper. Apparently, I’ve been trying to get to pencil and paper since the very beginning.

Once I finally had full access to pen, paper, and even computer labs, a new mission came to be.

Finding an inspiring spot to write.

I made my way to every library within a 20-mile radius. I tried the crook of every tree on every block in my neighborhood. I even left the country quite a bit on the hunt…

Once I became a professional writer, I thought that creating my own writing space, and writing every day, would satisfy the need to find an inspiring place to write.

I was WRONG.

New York City libraries are beautiful but not open late, and I’m a late-night writer. Cafes are too busy and distracting and again, not open late. When I moved out of the city, up the Hudson, and had more space, and even had a shared office with my husband, Mark, I thought OK, now, I should be content with my writer’s space.

I was WRONG.

I loved my office space, but it was shared with a really amazing human who also honors piles, clutter, and invading shared space. Not very inspiring. It got so bad that I actually sauntered into a few nice wedding hotels in the area to find clean, quiet spots to write.

I realized after a bit that I could create my own retreats. Who would stop me? I could go anywhere, on my own or with other writer friends, and have a retreat. I started making a point to do a retreat for myself at least 4–5 times a year. Some farther away, Pigeon Forge, TN, or Los Angeles, CA — some much closer, Ogunquit, ME, Martha’s Vineyard, MA, and Bucks County, PA.

After 15 years of creating solo and group retreats, I’ve discovered a few helpful things

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