A writing retreat is as good as a holiday!

It’s what many writers’ dream about – a quiet, comfortable, inspiring place to write.

Taroona, Hobart

You might already have that in your usual writing ‘bolt-hole’ at home, and let’s face it, anywhere is a good place to write – it’s the lack of willpower (and interruptions from family needs, a paid job or other various non-essential activities) that usually prevents one actually writing. That’s what it’s like for me, at least.

Making the break away from one’s comfort zone every now and then is important. With no other demands on your time or attention you’re forced to face those manuscripts banging on the door of your mind.

I’m revelling in my current ‘writing retreat from heaven’ – house-sitting in the beautiful city of Hobart.

Hobart is the capital city of Tasmania (the tiny island State at the bottom of the Australian mainland if you’re not familiar with our place on the globe). Not only is this a gorgeous small city, it’s home to some of my favourite writers, it’s filled with historical and beautiful buildings, it sits alongside a fabulous expanse of water, the Derwent River just before it reaches the sea, and behind, like some geological fortress, the 1,271 metre high Mt Wellington towers over the city. 

Hobart from Mt Wellington

The home I’m looking after for five weeks has large picture-windows that look out towards the ever-changing water. It also has a very efficient  fireplace – perfect for Hobart’s chilly spring nights. No freezing garret for me!

Dawn across the Derwent River

On my list of ‘to do’ writing during my time in Hobart:

  1. Work on the final edit of my story for 8-11 year olds, Fangus Fearbottom.
  2. Work on another edit of the series’ second story (well, it will be a series if a publisher likes it), Fangus Fearbottom – The Banana Bandits.
  3. Outline the plot for the third story, Fangus Fearbottom – The Vampire Sniffer. I want to write the first draft in this year’s NaNoWriMo – the global National Novel Writing Month.

I’ll catch up with several of my writing compatriots this week (can’t wait to see you again, Karen B!) and Tassie author, Julie Hunt.

With Tassie children's author, Julie Hunt.

Looking forward to meeting some new friends from the world of children’s writing this week too. Also have to go back to Fullers Bookshopto talk to their children’s books expert, the delightful Jen Murnaghan.

Outside my window - a European goldfinch.

So, yes, I recommend a writing retreat every now and then!

Where would you go if you had the chance? I’d love to hear about your dream writing retreat.


16 thoughts on “A writing retreat is as good as a holiday!

  1. Sheryl,

    You look like you are having way too much fun:)

    What an amazing looking place and what gorgeous photos. No wonder you sound so inspired.
    hope you achieve everything you set out to while you’re there:)

    Dee x


  2. Thanks, Lorraine. Did you see what our weather is tomorrow? 26 degrees, I believe. I think I’ve brought Brissie spring temperature down here. Yes, I love Hobart too.


  3. Love Hobart- full of my rellies and memories and where my love of cooler weather comes from- Adelaide is a great retreat too- anywhere where I’m not distracted by family, housework and garden is a retreat- enjoy those drafts( manuscripts and Hobart weather!)


  4. Hi Sheryl

    That chair looks too comfortable and the view from the window so tranquil I imagine it will be easier to day dream than write. Good luck anyway. Gorgeous photos. Your Mum


  5. Hi Sheryl, Loved reading about your writing retreat. Sounds so relaxing and inspiring. Enjoyed staring into your photos too, picking out the glorious detail … Karen T:)


  6. Birds are beautiful to watch. The best writing comes from when we notice such little details – you’re sure to write up[ a storm. Vicki


  7. Vicki, I know what you mean – luckily I’ve had two weeks of R&R here so can now get into the writing and editing. I still can’t help noticing what happens out the windows though. Yesterday, I saw two little birds in the garden that I’ve never seen before – a European goldfinch and a New Holland Honeyeater. We don’t have them in Brisbane – they’re so gorgeous.


  8. Mmmm, I don’t think I could get a thing written staying in such a beautiful spot. i’d be daydreaming out the window. Still, that’s often when the best writing ideas pop into my head. Hobart is a gorgeous city. Enjoy your time there and good luck with that writing. Vicki


  9. Kat, glad you picked up on my pleasure at being in this place at this time. I don’t even think I’ll get lonely either. So much writing to do in the time I have left here. Hope things are well with you! 🙂


  10. A lovely blog post, Sheryl. Puts everything so nicely in its place. I can see why you’ve been counting down. Hope you get heaps of writing done in such an inspirational setting. xx


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