RETREAT!

writing at beach

YAY! Tomorrow I’m off on writing retreat – just me this time. I’m heading five hours south to a beautiful secluded beach and an air-conditioned cabin where I can focus exclusively on my screenplay. My office here at home is a corner of the living room which these days at least has a screen around it. Through most of summer it’s almost impossible to work here though because it’s so hot that my brain turns into some sort of south east Asian hot pot stew, even with a fan blowing straight on me and all of my papers.

Time away on retreat – this time I have a full glorious two weeks (thank you Screen Queensland!) – makes all the difference when you have a big project to tackle. Time alone with just you and the work enables you to immerse yourself in the world of the story you are creating without distractions and everyday responsibilities. Everything else slides away and you become just a conduit for the work you are creating – a little crazed perhaps-  but focused and productive. Well, I hope so anyway.

My days will go something like this – an early morning walk, swim and yoga on the beach, then home for breakfast and writing.  More writing. Lunch then a break for breathing and sivasana (or maybe just a nap!). Another beach trip for extra swimming and an explore, then home for more writing. Writing. Writing. Dinner. Then some relax and wind down time so I’ll be able to sleep without my head buzzing with the story – though my dreams will most probably be filled with it.

Four years ago around this time of year, I spent a wonderful two weeks at Varuna the Writers House in the Blue Mountains writing the first draft of the novel that this screenplay is now so very loosely based upon. In two weeks I wrote over 60 000 words, so I’m hopeful that my fortnight at the beach now will result in the same frenzied output and I’ll be bringing back a completed screenplay.

It’s going to be a grand adventure!Edwina beach writing

Wish me luck!!

See you when I get home 🙂 xx

Interested in a writing retreat of your own? There are still a few place left in the next Relax and Write Retreat – click HERE for more details.

 

BACK ON THE HORSE THAT THREW ME

The horse that threw me

The horse that threw me

 

I’ve been writing a long time now. In 2002 when my children were small, I first dedicated time each day to a creative writing practice and used to spend naptime typing in a fury to complete a novel.

Since then my beautiful babies have grown into young adults and I’ve written another five full length manuscripts, one of which has been published.

Not for want of trying.

Much as I try to convince myself that rejections hurt less over time, it’s a lie and I know it.

The elephant hide I’ve tried so hard to develop has worn as thin as an old cotton sheet in places, tearing at the slightest tug. I’ve tried to chuck it all in, get a normal job like other people. But that hasn’t exactly gone to plan either.

I want to write. I still want to write. It’s how I make sense of the world. How my brain works best, what I enjoy most, get most satisfaction from, what I’m best at.

And so today, I’m dragging out the last half-baked rewrite of “Dear Madman” and seeing what I can salvage. If I can figure out how to give it the voice and form it longs for.

I’m scared of that horse, it’s big and fiery-eyed and stomping its hoofs. But I’m getting back on, goddamn it! I’m going to cling to its mane as it bucks and twists; it won’t throw me again. I’m going to ride it, as fast as I can, as far as I can, wind in my hair