Sometimes, getting away from normal life is just what you need. It can clear your mind and allow you to focus on writing, or whatever you need to do.
With a little planning and a small budget, you can gift yourself some time alone to do as much writing as you want. Granted, if you have a lot of scheduled responsibilities or small children to care for, getting away can be difficult. I’ve been there.
But these days my youngest is in high school, which means I have more freedom and flexibility than I used to. Not that I always remember that. There’s still a lot to do: carpools, appointments, meals to prepare. I’ve spent so many years focused on making sure my kids have what they need, and the household works okay, that the thought of going somewhere by myself does not come naturally. And when it does surface, it seems like a huge luxury.
When I slow down and reflect, though, I realize I can go away. In January I studied my calendar and found a couple days when I was off duty for carpool, and my son had no extra activities. Because my husband is still working from home, I knew he could take care of basic day-to-day logistics.
Then I looked for an inexpensive hotel room. I focused on beaches within a three-hour drive. Around here, it’s too cold for the beach right now, so I was able to take advantage of off-season prices. I got two nights right on the beach for under $120.
I enjoyed everything about my little retreat. The drive out was lovely. Though temperatures were below freezing, it was a sunny day. Nicely ensconced in my warm car, arriving at the beach town felt like the beginning of a vacation.
I went directly to the public library. There I found an empty table and wrote for several hours. Once it was late enough to check in, I went to the hotel. After a nice dinner from the hotel restaurant, I wrote late into the night. No interruptions :o)
After a good night’s sleep, I wrote all the next day. I also took a walk on the beach and picked up take-out. It was totally worth the few extra dollars I paid to be right on the beach. It did my soul and my writing good to have that view of the ocean.
On my last morning, I snuck in some writing before checking out.
Here’s what was great:
- quiet time watching waves, listening to them crash
- watching the sun rise over the ocean from my room
- digging into my manuscript and building some momentum on this editing pass
- connecting with my quiet heart—it has opinions about how this story should be told, and what the story has to say
I know it can be hard to get away. Unfortunately, the people that need to get away the most are the ones that may have the hardest time pulling it off. But sometimes, the only thing preventing you is your own head, as it was with me.
Are you thinking about getting away for a few days?