Recipe for a Creative Community Weekend

Step 1: Collect the following ingredients:

  • 4-6 passionate friends who get along and want to develop their creative goals
  • House, cabin, or hotel, preferably beautiful and cheap (Ask your friends if they know someone who will offer it for free)
  • Edibles to cover three days of meals for all
  • Miscellaneous clothes
  • Writing essentials (Laptop, notebook, pens, playlists, headphones)

Step 2: Carefully mix the above ingredients, then strain out:

  • Cell phones (some will still slip through, but do your best!)
  • Anxieties, insecurities, doubts, and distractions (These are best extracted in an environment where all are made to feel safe and supported)

Step 3: Bake on medium-low heat for three to four days, alternating between focused work, and relaxed socializing. Sprinkle liberally with laughter and serve.

I’ve just returned from a wonderful retreat with five of my dearest writer friends. We stayed in a cabin on Vashon Island, soaked up the delicious hot weather, and took focused time to go deeper into our creative projects than our regular routines allow.

I’ve returned from this weekend with:


1. Encouragement to push the limits of certain subjects in my fiction,

2. Several thousand words banked on my new dream-inspired post apocalyptic novella,

3. Deeper unity and understanding of the trials and triumphs that my friends are also facing on this journey.

One of the sweetest moments for me: One night, we sat outside singing ballads and folk songs and songs of wonder and praise to God. People were singing solo who’d never have performed in front of others, because of this net of trust we’d woven around ourselves. It was pure love and magic.

This writer has returned restored.


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This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. How wonderful, Elise! I will definitely think of implementing this in my area with some writer friends. You have inspired a movement!

    1. Christina, that is SO awesome! Please let me know if you have any questions! I’d love to be a resource to you!

  2. This is pretty damn awesome! I’ve wanted to throw one of these for years.

    1. Jesse, it’s really wonderful! The organization before the event takes some getting used to, but I gravitate toward that sort of thing already. Once everyone’s there…oh my gosh, it’s one of the biggest highs of my life. As I said to Christina, let me know if I can help with sharing what I’ve done in the best when I put these together.

  3. This is lovely. And inspiring. I’m so very happy for you – that safe community {with lots of laughter} is a total and complete gem!

    1. Safe community is a must! I’ve actually started saying “I have to personally approve everyone who comes on these retreats” because that safety is so essential. 🙂

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