I’ve been a member of WordWatchers writing group for fourteen years now and every January we pack our bags and go away together for a long weekend.
This year we went to the lovely Mill House in Devon. It was a perfect venue for us, quiet and relaxing with plenty of space so that we could all work together around big tables or hide away either alone or in twos and threes for intense discussions, mini-workshops or simply a chance to chat about our writing.
Parts of the longhouse date back to the sixteenth century and there are many quirky little nooks and a variety of interesting architectural features. In the evenings we sat by the woodturning stove with a glass of wine or two, putting the world to rights and discussing our hopes and dreams for our books.
Our food was beautifully cooked for us from fresh ingredients, some from the kitchen garden. Usually we self-cater but it was definitely a bonus this time not to have to stop working to prepare food for ten hungry writers!
Although the weather was wet during our visit, I enjoyed some fresh air while exploring the seven acres of grounds. An ancient leat (stream) ran alongside the house and it was very soothing to hear it bubbling away beneath my bedroom window during the night.
We’re all working on different genres of novels but, whatever we write, we’re passionate about exploring and improving our knowledge of the craft.
The annual retreat gives us vital time and space to exchange and share our skills, to critique each other’s work and simply to enjoy the company of good friends.
To find out more about WordWatchers, visit the website here