Thank you, again, Wendy Swore, for inviting me to such an awesome writer's retreat! Wendy made this retreat so fun and exciting for everyone by: holding tons of contests to get the most writing out of us as possible while earning some great prizes; challenging us with sprint-timed writing which is exhausting yet an amazing way to write; having a great planned time so that everyone could learn, learn, learn; plus concentrate on writing, writing, writing for a weekend of fun. Not only that, but we ate amazing meals. It was fun to win prizes, such as these hats that, from now on, I'm to wear when I am not supposed to be disturbed and when I'm at work at my computer :) Great fun!
And, thank you, to you amazing authors for welcoming me and making me feel comfortable at my first retreat! It was great to mix and mingle with you and hear your stories and inspiration. I learned so much from all of you as you shared technique, talent, and how-to's for future application. Thank you so much!! :) I also loved the classes on book covers and also on creating interesting characters. I wish I had been able to attend the one on query letters, but, alas, I couldn't be in two places at once...(I think it's because I don't write fantasy...).
Setting goals is so important when writing, as with anything else in life. It helps you to actually strive for the goal and accomplish your overall dream. I was able to complete The Governess trilogy and almost finish Pirate Bride in its first draft. What's next, you ask? Well, how about the fun part...the fleshing out process that makes the story an exciting adventure.
It was cool to meet and talk to a graphics artist who was willing to answer some of my questions as well as many other authors while there. I'm afraid we kept him from his own writing. So sorry, Devon! But he was very kind and generous in helping us all with our many questions. In fact, in looking at my cover, we decided to experiment while we talked about it. So we pulled up a copy of my book cover photograph.
He made it fascinating to watch the process that it takes to make a picture into a cover. He got right into it and ended up creating my newest cover for the new governess trilogy. Click here for a peek! Now, with one of the certificates I won as a prize, I hope to ask him to do my cover for Pirate Bride. Anyone needing to have cover work done, he's very gifted and works very hard at his craft.
The cabin we stayed in was more like a lodge. It was gorgeous and had plenty of room for all of us to spread out and find a comfortable spot to write. There was great teamwork with people discussing topics they needed help with as well as quiet time to work in silence. It was an amazing experience. I hope to be able to show more pictures later (they are now below) of the deer the other writers took pictures of... no bears, thank goodness... although we were told there were some bear sightings. We were careful when out on the deck or walking outside the cabin.
And now I'm happy to be home with my little family. I missed them, and they are the whole reason why I write. They are the reason why I do anything. Because of them, I strive each day to heal so that I can raise them and teach them and love them. They are the reasons I'm still alive today.
I love you!
Ellise & Mom