Monday, April 15, 2013

How Do You Turn The Faucet On?


Good quote here, but the big question is how to turn the faucet on? 

Inspiration + faucet=something you'll write. 

This week I'm going to turn on the faucet by attending my online writer's group conference. This will be the fifth time part of our international women's critique group (writersandcritters)  has gathered at a state park in Virginia to listen to presentations on writing by members of the group as well as editors and authors who have been invited to spend a morning or afternoon with us. We talk about writing-related things as well as filling in the blanks on our personal lives. We eat like royalty, thanks to a very special woman from Mississippi who cooks for us. We take time to walk along the paths int he wooded area where we stay, we might have a dip in a hot tub, and we sip wine each evening which brings about more talking. 

At previous gatherings, after listening to the excellent presentations, I become excited about writing. I'm ready to go home and get busy on a new story or essay or poem.Maybe even before leaving the conference or on the plane traveling home. The 25 women who will attend this year come from all walks of life and from many states and other countries. Foreign country attendees this year are from South Africa and China, also Canada. Those coming from the USA will represent the far Northwest, the East, the Midwest and the Southeast. Some still work at non-writing jobs full-time and write in their spare time. Some devote all their time to writing, either as a job or a passion. Each year, we have familiar faces and voices, but there are a few who are missing and several attending the conference for the first time. There will be three husbands coming this year. They don't attend the meetings, but they are a great help with running errands, fixing technical glitches, even helping with serving and cleaning up after meals. They're great guys and good sports.

Note that I mentioned familiar faces and voices. At the first conference I went to, it thrilled me to hear these women who had become so much a part of my life online. I knew them well, I knew their writing well, but I did not know how they sounded. Once I met them at the conference, I heard the individual voices later when I'd read and critique their writing online. We are all English speaking but so many different accents, inflections, and tones. 

There are 12 cabins in the Algonkian State Park where we gather. We usually take nearly all the cabins. Some have 3 bedrooms, some 4 or 5. We use the largest for the meeting place. All have fireplaces that turn on with a flip of the switch. They have decks that face the Potomac River. The park is located about twenty minutes from Dulles Airport in Washington, D.C. If you'd like to see the 5 bedroom cabin I will be staying in, go to this link.  Put your cursor in the top left corner and move it for a panoramic view. Three bedrooms on the main floor and two upstairs, a bathroom on each floor. A huge deck which calls me to sit and soak up the view. 

The park has wi-fi so I'll be taking my laptop along and hope to post each day. I fly tomorrow at noon and will return on Saturday, early evening. Ken will pick me up and we'll go out for dinner and spend the night in Kansas City before returning to Manhattan the next day. I'm excited about this special week.

Attending a conference is definitely one way to turn on that faucet so that the writing will begin to flow. Can you think of any other ways to do it?


3 comments:

  1. Nancy, this is just the inspiration I need today to give myself PERMISSION to write fiction during "prime time" daylight hours when I would normally be writing indexes for pay. Now that I am almost 70, I get to do this!! Indexes get done when job offers come in, but instead of worrying about the gaps in my schedule, I am now filling them with writing my third novel, The Visiting Girl, based on the dramatic early life of Katharine Hepburn's mother. I recently read a bio of KH and was blow away by her mother's story. Enjoy your gathering and what a great cabin!!

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  2. Nancy, this is just the inspiration I need today to give myself PERMISSION to write fiction during "prime time" daylight hours when I would normally be writing indexes for pay. Now that I am almost 70, I get to do this!! Indexes get done when job offers come in, but instead of worrying about the gaps in my schedule, I am now filling them with writing my third novel, The Visiting Girl, based on the dramatic early life of Katharine Hepburn's mother. I recently read a bio of KH and was blow away by her mother's story. Enjoy your gathering and what a great cabin!!

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  3. Nancy: I read your posts on Linked In. I like your style of writing. My hubby and I have visited Kansas a few times, our son moved to Topeka just over two years ago. My name is Cecelia Lester. My blog name is quiet spirit.

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