Thursday, May 19, 2011

Books for my Writing Retreat

As this is the Canadian long weekend and I get Monday off from my day job, I decided to get away from home, husband, dogs and other worldly responsibilities and have a “ME” weekend. I live just north of the Minnesota border with Ontario, so I tend to travel to the States quite often.
Last year I went to a writing retreat in Minnesota. The retreat itself wasn’t quite what I had expected and focussed more on poetry than prose, but I found a wonderful little camp that isn’t really that far away. I booked myself in for Saturday and Sunday night and I get my own cabin on the lake. No internet, no telephone, no running water in the cabin, and apparently no people - I am the only person booked at the camp for the weekend! The office is even offsite. So I will be on my own, totally. I am looking forward to the retreat and I intend to write, read and reflect. Since it is supposed to be rainy on the weekend, I should be able to lock myself away in the cabin and avoid the distraction of nice weather and sunshine.

But, this is a working retreat, so I intend to write like crazy on Saturday, Sunday and part of Monday. I’ve been trying to think of what I need to take on this retreat for reference books, those that are my favourites, that I can’t part with, that I can refer to when I am stuck. I can’t take them all, but I can select a few that I absolutely love. Yes, I will be taking my Kindle, but not all of my books are on there yet. The majority of my books are still in paper format, plus I am not a big fan of reference books on the Kindle, it’s just too hard to flip to the right page. :)

Those books I’m considering taking are:

Writing Steampunk! By Beth Daniels. Everything you need to know about steampunk. I’m also taking her six month steampunk class, so I know it will come in handy.

On Writing by Steven King – for inspiration.

The Fire in Fiction by Donald Maass – he really knows what he’s talking about.

Woe is I by Patricia T. O’Connor – great grammar book, in an easy to understand format

Writing and Selling your Mystery Novel by Hallie Ephron – I love this book. It really breaks down the components of a mystery

What books would you take on a writer’s retreat or which ones can’t you live without?


Rosi said...

I grew up in Minnesota. Should be too early for mosquitoes, so a nice weekend. I love Stephen King's On Writing, but if I were to go away to write, I would probably just take a dictionary, thesaurus, Writing Down the Bones, and Sands Hall's Tools of the Writer's Craft. I hope you find lots of inspiration!

Stacy McKitrick said...

The retreat sounds interesting. I like beling alone at times, but I think I prefer doing it at home. My husband will be fishing next month and will be gone a week. I foresee a lot of writing being written!

As for books, I love SYNONYM FINDER by J.I. Rodale and I would need a dictionary (especially if I didn't have to fall back on!). Have fun!!

Stacie Carver said...

I never even thought of a dictionary or thesaurus. Thanks!

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