Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Another Weekend Away

Marie Francis and Sarah Snowdon
On a writing retreat, of course, what else?  I joined up with several regular writing writing friends at Weetwood Hall in Leeds last weekend for another Malaga workshop.  Unlike my February course at Fishguard, this was largely time spent on our own, writing and focussing on feedback given by the course tutor, Kate Walker, on work submitted beforehand.

As per usual, there were several 'lightbulb' moments and it was wonderful to be able to share the process with others, bounce ideas around, and benefit from the excitement and enthusiasm.  

One of the most helpful things for me this time round was a character questionnaire shared with the group by Claire.  It really was like a door opening, as getting to know my characters is always a sticking point for me.



 
Sally-Ann, Claire and Kate Walker
Claire had done a lot of character work by putting her current hero and heroine through an interview with a society interviewer who asked them the sort of questions they didn't want to be asked, questions that made them uncomfortable, and questions that had both the fictional interviewer and us really seeing deep inside the character.

I gave it a go with my hero and, yes you've guessed it, another lightbulb went on! Thanks so much for sharing that, Claire.

I do have to confess, however, that after the lightbulb moment, I spent a couple of hours soaking in a bath with a glass of wine - who said writing retreats were all about writing anyway?


Actually, the weekend was very intense, with lots of discussion in between the writing bouts, and sometimes a little bit of  time out is not a bad thing.   As you can see from the photos, there were many coffee breaks too but even those were full of talk about writing - and a bit of web surfing looking for the perfect hero - or in this case a combination of several different heroes!

  

Put him down, woman!  
Nerys and Kim doing  spot of oggling.


4 comments:

  1. Hi Melissa, you've really captured the good feeling of the weekend. It was a great time and you're so right - those light bulb moments were popping around the place as we all talked. xx

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    1. Hi Sarah, writing weekends are definitely the highlights of my year - even without popping lightbulbs :) See you soon xx

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  2. So glad you enjoyed the weekend Melissa. It's always wonderful for your tutor when the light bulbs go on. I had a great time too - largely because of that. Hope to see you again soon.

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    1. Hi Kate - it was a fantastic weekend all round, wasn't it? So glad you enjoyed it as much as we did and I'm looking forward to more light-bulb popping moments at the next! xx

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