Today is a public holiday in England and so I’m treating myself to a mini writing retreat in the garden. For company, not only do I have my favourite notebook, fountain pen and a pot of peppermint tea, but a chorus of birds singing in the trees and a crowd of flowers swaying in the breeze. My favourites are the poppies which have just blossomed. They’re stunning.
Am I setting big writing goals for the day? Nope. My only aim is to write for the joy of it. Unless I have a deadline looming, I find the best way to summon the motivation to write is to let go and see where the writing leads me. Although it’s great to have a map, I love the surprises that come with not having a plan, the thrill of being on an adventure into the unknown, of discovering treasure.
You don’t have to be in an exotic or tranquil location to experience a writing retreat during the lockdown or at any other time. You just need to take a little time for yourself, find a spot to write, surround yourself with notebooks, pens and refreshments then start writing.
If your environment is too noisy, reach for some headphones and listen to some relaxing sounds like waves crashing against sand or play some music that gets you in the mood to write and won’t distract you.
A writing retreat doesn’t have to last a whole day or the entire lockdown. You can enjoy a retreat in any moment you can find, even just fifteen minutes here and there. You deserve some time to yourself, to do something you enjoy with no pressure to do anything but play.