Yesterday – Mother’s Day – I stole myself from my family into the quiet solitude of a writing retreat, and I was amazed at what I achieved away from the distractions of home.
It was only a small group of women, and one bloke – all writers – there were journalists, degree students and some on their third or fourth novel.
Is a master’s degree in creative writing necessary to write well?
“Hello, I’m a full-time mum, and I’ve been blogging for nearly two years…”
I have to admit, that didn’t sound very impressive when the words escaped my mouth.
At first I did feel a little daunted rubbing shoulders with some story telling pros.
But after we’d all grabbed a coffee or tea and a large slice of yummy chocolate banana loaf or lemon drizzle cake – I wrapped my lips around both – and sat down in our chosen position, dotted around the white bricked room, it didn’t matter at all.
Apart from quick chit-chat over lunch – ‘So what’s your story about?’ ‘Finished the first draft yet?’ – with sandwiches and crisps and chocolate nests – there was a lot of sugar digested – the day was consumed by silence – only the sound of tapping on computers and faint beats from ear phones.
And I wrote between 1,000 and 1,500 words which I’m very pleased with since I’m quite a slow writer, dither about and sabotage myself with Twitter – incidentally I had no internet connection which was a very, very good thing.
Someone wrote 5,500 words!
Today I glanced over what I’d written yesterday – and it’s going to need some tweaking.
But hey, this is only the first draft – plenty of time for fancy prose in the edits to come.
Getting the damn thing written is all I want for now.