I have just returned from a five day writing retreat in the Rocky mountains. It occurred to me that we (writers) all enjoy escaping every day life to write. So today’s question is: Where is your perfect writing retreat?
Would you prefer mountain or forest cabin, or a beach house or somewhere else? Would you go alone or within a group?
Last week’s question: How did you build your author platform? Was it by personal effort or did you have professional help?
So how do we know if we are an old soul or not? Let’s look at the most common traits for an old soul. Firstly, they are able to relate better to older people and that their views on life are more mature – a bit before their time, so to speak. Old souls are able to enjoy their own company and are more self sufficient when it comes to entertaining themselves. That is not to say they are lonely or introverted, just confident in themselves and old in heart, old in mind and old in soul, whose outlook on life is vastly different and more matured than those around him/her.
Here are some common personality traits:
Homebodies & Solitary
Someone who would rather stay in on Friday night instead of hitting the bars because they are disinterested in the pursuits and interests of the people in their age groups. A perfect partner would be someone who shares this sentiment. A bottle of wine, candles, and a relaxed night of conversation and good company, is an old soul’s idea of a great evening.
The material trappings of life do not hold with an old soul, they dismiss the short-lived things in life and do not see the purpose of pursuing things that can be easily taken away from them. Affection will be expressed through grand gestures that have deeper meaning, like love letters or poems, rather than diamond rings or luxury cars.
Strong Communication Skill
Old souls do not play games when it comes to communication. They will express their feelings honestly and tell you like it is. Remember their intentions are good and from the heart.
Careful with their Emotions
An old soul only responds to those whom they’re emotionally invested in. Relationships without emotion, or a deeper connection, is meaningless to them. They will not open up immediately, careful with their emotional well-being until they get to know you. Consequently, old souls tend to have placid, stable natures as a result of their approach to life.
Everything is Done with Purpose
An old soul sees the future picture rather than the superficial or shallow emotions of a passing crush. If a relationship is seen as not worthy then it will not be encouraged or valued. In other words settling for a person is not something they do.
Love of Knowledge, Wisdom and Truth.
An old soul finds himself gravitating towards the intellectual side of life with an inherent understanding that knowledge is power, wisdom is happiness and truth is freedom.
Transience of Life.
Plagued with reminders of their own mortality, and that of everything and everyone around them can make an old soul weary and at times withdrawn. In many ways this dictates the way they live their lives.Their ability to reflect and learn from their actions and those of others is their greatest teacher in life.
Some people describe themselves as being “young at heart”, so too can young people be “old at heart”.
It’s National Library Week (April 13 – 19) in America – not a global celebration run simultaneously unfortunately but let’s take it to our corner of the world, shall we? Libraries have changed from the ‘quiet, echoing halls’ of bygone days into spaces enjoyed by all ages, classes and cultures. There is investment in new city libraries and fierce support for numerous small libraries in towns and small hamlets alike. As you can read in this article – libraries are well loved around the globe and have adapted to the needs of their visitors. The range of traditional and modern buildings is striking.
Love Letter to Strathcona County library, Sherwood Park, Alberta.
With gleaming glass panels reflecting the light and spectacular artwork adorning your walls, you are a vision to behold. A comfortable chair nestled into an alcove embraces the solitary reader while communal study rooms and computer desks cater to the young and senior alike. Your glowing fireplace makes for a cozy reading nook or a place for conversation sitting on low sofas. The story tree changes with the seasons as children read and listen to fascinating words under its branches. You embrace all who enter and feed their minds. It is a privilege to call you my own and I love the hours I spend within your walls.
Sequester – definition: to remove from use, or withdraw into solitude or retirement : seclude
Withdrawing into our own magical world of words, is most certainly a writer’s dream. Whether we imagine it to be a beach house, a woodland cabin or a study with a lock on the door – having our own solitary space has magical ramifications. We imagine our greatest work revealing itself as we sit in solitude, allowing our muse full reign on our time.
I was fortunate to attend a retreat in February 2012 at Strawberry Creek. With several other members of my writing group in attendance, we managed to revise, edit and write new and existing manuscripts. With the choice of writing alone or in a group, everyone found their comfort zone. Gathering together for meals, which are made for us and evening conversation in front of a roaring fire, it was a perfect sequester from our every day lives.
The plan is to enjoy this retreat again in the spring of 2014. I am so looking forward to it. A long weekend of words and like minded people, what more could you possibly ask for?
Have you been on a retreat?
Was it all you wish it to be?
If you could have your own ‘retreat’ where would it be?
The writing life need not be a solitary one anymore. With today’s technology, we have the ability to connect with other writers around the globe. Some may say it is not a ‘real’ connection but as with any relationship, it’s what you put into it that makes the difference. I am a strong believer in ‘sharing’ – hence my bi-line, because I am open to this resource, I have met some wonderful people. Some are at the beginning of their writing life and others established and published.
However, the sheer abundance of web sites can overwhelm us. It is not possible to link to them all without detriment to our craft. The answer? Select sites and blogs that not only appeal to you but have a common thread or instruction to your particular interest, genre, style, skill level or indeed fancy. With careful selection you will be able to cultivate a rapport with the chosen authors. This in turn grows into a support system. Don’t think that your views or opinions are not worthy because everyone can derive something from them. Fresh eyes can see what experienced ones may overlook.
Careful selection also means you are not overloaded with notifications and a sense of guilt for not commenting or responding. Thus you can balance actual writing time with ‘socializing’. Yes I understand that once you click it is very difficult to leave but leave you must – I have found limiting my time on social media has helped a lot and because I have spent more time writing I feel good about myself and the body of work achieved. Choose your own period of social time and keep to it. Obviously there are exceptions to every rule. If you happen to link up with someone who needs your help or whose help you need then logging off is not productive or well mannered.
My desk calendar word for today is : Endemic. The definition is 1) belonging or native to a country or people 2) characteristic of a certain area, region or environment.
Our writing community makes us all endemic to this ‘world of words’. We may sit at our desks, in a comfy chair or under a tree to write but our characteristic as a ‘weaver of words’ makes us a member of a unique country – even if it is largely in cyber-space. The more we share, support and encourage each other the better our own writing will become – it’s a win, win situation.