Getting away to write can make a huge difference what you achieve.
Finding the time to write during the week as I’ve said in previous blogs can be a problem, but sometimes I need chunks of time to study the overall structure of my novel and that means holding a whole load of detail in my head.
In the past I’ve gone away with writing friends and hired a cottage but this time I wanted space on my own. Going away on your own can be costly though. There are any number of specialist writing retreats out there and there’s no argument that most are in beautiful locations but they will happily charge a fortune for their accommodation. But what do you really need? Somewhere comfortable and reasonably quiet without the distractions of home, and a decent table to work on is probably about it.
One fellow writer I know goes to hotels but his either means working in the hotel lobby where you will be pestered by waiting staff to keep buying coffee or working in your bedroom, which is hardly inspiring.
Why not consider holiday parks? Out of season you can pick up a great deal. A lot of parks have a variety of accommodation. There are caravans which are the cheapest option and there are also often lodges which give you a lot more room and a cosy environment to work in. If you get a last minute deal and can go during the week you can end up paying as little as £100 for 3-4 days.
I loved my time away in the lodge featured here. It was just the dog and me. Plenty of sleep to refresh, plenty of walks in the forest to think and mull things over, and long hours at the laptop working through plots details and reactions with a clear head, and then a swim in the onsite pool in the evening to release the tension in my neck and shoulders.
Breaks were taken on the verandah with a mug of coffee (and later a glass of wine) watching the squirrels. It was a fabulously productive weekend and the only downside was that I had to come home.
Retreats, whether on your own, with a group of writing friends or at an organised retreat with strangers, can give you the concentration and push you need to move your writing forward as well as being recharging and a lot of fun.