Almost Paradise: Writer’s Retreat

It’s that time of year again.  School has ended.  Memorial Day has come and gone.  Summer looms like a large, azure-blue empty sky just waiting to be filled with hours upon hours of uninterrupted writing.

And the first milepost is Chesapeake Romance Writers’ annual Writer’s Retreat.


I leave tomorrow just after lunch.  I get to take the Jamestown Ferry across the James River and drive through lush countryside down to the retreat, Chanco on the James. Once Watson-Lodg-266there, I won’t leave until they throw me out at 2pm on Sunday.  Four days of uninterrupted (more or less) writing.

Meals included and dinner served by a gourmet chef.  JoeMack




For a writer who has to battle job, kids, cats, dogs, and a husband who crave time with me, this place and these four days are paradise.


This will be my 4th retreat and I’ve always gotten a ton of work done.  Last year I finished four chapters of my Regency romance To Woo A Wicked Widow.  This year my goal is to finish my edits for Only Marriage Will Do.  I know my editor will be pleased with this goal.

chanco9The truly amazing thing about this retreat is how much work we all get done.  Despite the fact that we love to talk, 90% of the time we sit, silent, and type.  The proof is in the page count:  last year 15 of us wrote 999 pages.

We take breaks and go to the kitchen for a snack and some conversation.  Or we pass around dictionaries and thesauruses.  And once a day we have a workshop, led by one of our members, which you can attend or not as you choose. I think I’ve attended one in four years.

I go to write.

So tonight I’m scheduling my posts for the rest of the week.  I do check my email and blog, but only once or twice a day.  If you come by, think of me, writing away on my brand new computer–bought just for this retreat–piling up those page counts.  I’ll let you know next week how I did.

And now let Summer begin!


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9 Responses to Almost Paradise: Writer’s Retreat

  1. So beautiful and makes me miss home. I grew up in Virginia for the first 25 or so years of my life and only now that I live in the desert do I truly have an appreciation for the beauty of Virginia and the surrounding states. Enjoy your retreat!


  2. melissakeir says:

    Sounds like a blast! I can’t imagine all the women being so silent but it sounds inspiring. I’m jealous and would love to go!!


  3. I love writer’s retreat! So fun! Have a wonderful time!


  4. E. Ayers says:

    Have fun and say hi to the old gang for me! Shall I say, break a pencil? Lots of good word counts to everyone!


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