What’s a Working Holiday for a Writer?


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My work area while on holiday

Are you the kind of person who longs to get away and have time to yourself? Do you muse about just how that would look? Last year my husband and I escaped for three weeks in January and the result was a giant step ahead with publishing The Loyalist’s Wife.

This year we had the opportunity to come back for 3 1/2 weeks and it’s working beautifully. I am set up on one side of the table and Ron is on the other. See the open laptops? And there’s my water, a necessity when I’m writing, a pillow on the chair to raise me up (apologies to Josh Groban)  to an ergonomically correct position and my pile of folders and notes I brought with me. You should see what I left behind!

Each day I get up, have breakfast, check my email, add to my list of things to do for the day, take my shower and get beautiful (we can only hope), and settle in to my cushion-covered chair to write my three pages for the day. That’s my goal. Often at home I just don’t make it, but here the pages are piling up and so is my excitement. I am a goal-oriented person so fulfilling those goals lets me soar for the rest of the day.

Those pages take about two hours as I’m working on the first draft. And that’s usually the start to my day. This morning, however, there is a book club meeting at 10:30 and, reading lover that I am, I thought I’d go. the fact that I might meet other readers who might like my work has not escaped me. Wish me luck.

Since we got here I’ve written 3 pages every day, which makes 21 pages. With a total of 24 days here, that makes 72 pages. And I’ve trained myself to push forward rather than hone each line to perfection. The goal is to finish the first draft and THEN revise. You see you can teach an old dog new tricks.

So you can share in my upbeat mood, here are two more pictures. The first is from our balcony in the morning; the beckoning blue of the ocean is a daily delight.

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This last one is from the same perspective at the end of the day. What’s not to like?

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I’m off to hear what others are reading and I wish you worlds of wonder in your own reading. Consider leaving a note in the comments below to tell us of your favorite writing or reading place.


13 thoughts on “What’s a Working Holiday for a Writer?

  1. Absolutely beautiful view from your balcony…think I’d be tempted to move a chair there and stay. Guess might not help get much done though…lol. My favorite place to read or write is usually sitting in the recliner with my legs folded up under me. Wish I was a water drinker, but I like to have a glass of sweet tea handy.


    • Ah, yes, but what I didn’t say is the weather is not that warm. Warmer than Ontario, for sure, and lovely for walking but not sitting, unless it’s in the hot tub. And sweet tea sounds just lovely. 🙂


  2. I am ‘escaping’ for a writing retreat in May – I know from past experience that time dedicated to just writing makes a world of difference from the usual daily/weekly routine of squeezing writing in!


    • I’ve written 39 pages in the 13 days we’ve been here, Sharon, and it feels wonderful. So does the absence of snow, although they are threatening some here tomorrow. Surely not! Thanks for commenting, Sharon.


  3. Elaine, you live in a privileged spot! Thank you for letting us have a glimpse of it to enjoy it vicariously :)) I mostly read in bed, take down notes in outdoor cafés, and write in my study, a room that looks out on the drab downtown streets. I’m lucky to have my walls lined with bookcases and paintings I love.


  4. Sounds like my kind of holiday – I’m on one of those right now. My goal is to make it through the 300 pages of my very rough first draft so I can begin revising and honing for beta readers. Good luck, Elaine!


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