February 2018

This month I travelled to snowy Yorkshire to spend five days on a writing retreat at the wonderful Garsdale Retreat. Our tutor-facilitator for the week was novelist and trainer Stephanie Butland.

In addition to wonderful food, a beautiful house surrounded by amazing scenery, and the presence of a Steinway grand on which I whiled away many mornings, our group had two daily writing workshops to focus our attention and help us overcome issues in our current projects.

Rather than this being a 'get writing' style retreat, with basic introductory exercises, Stephanie had prepared topics as diverse as the neuroscience behind creative thinking, how to manage sub-plots, and what we mean by 'beautiful' writing.

I have returned home with two notebooks filled with new ideas and notes on how to spur my work on, and am looking forward to creating a work plan incorporating these ideas.

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