Last Thursday, I flew to Santa Fe, New Mexico to join seven other writers on a retreat. We live all over the country, so we try to pick places to go that are relatively easy for all of us to get to, plus we want to find places that feed our artistic souls. Last year, we stayed at a lovely bed and breakfast outside Nashville; next year, we're thinking somewhere near San Antonio or Austin, Texas.
There is nothing like spending time with other writers you trust implicitly. You can talk about your struggles as a writer and know they understand, truly understand, what you're going through. We talked about our struggles, and we helped each other brainstorm. We talked about the industry, and we talked about our fears.
We also ate. One of our number is a foodie and always scouts out restaurants for us, both on retreat and at RWA National (where we meet for dinner). I had one of the best meals of my life at a place called Cafe Pasquale, blue corn enchiladas with mole sauce and corn torte. It was so delicious, I almost had to shut my eyes to manage the sensory overload.
Something shifted inside me during an intense discussion we had the last night. The message I got--which came from the universe,trust me--was to put my faith in my passion for my story and the purity of my vision, not in competence. I am a creative person, deeply creative, and I need to honor and protect that. We talked about holy selfishness, of putting ourselves first to do the work we were made to do.
Last week, I talked about being gentle with myself, and allowing myself to be okay with writing 100 words a week, if that's all I have. Over the weekend, I recommitted myself to writing 100 words a day. I will have to change my life to make that happen, but it's worth doing. I believe that if I do this, I will feed my soul, and that will tap into energy I don't know I have.