In the summer of 2012, I was commuting 2 hours each way to my job in Queens from my home in Long Island.
Summer was the busiest time of year in my role – I was a program specialist for a training program for public school principals. That July I was spending 90% of my waking hours on the train or in a fluorescent-lit, badly-air-conditioned school supporting the Summer Intensive.
Until I escaped.
When I was hired the previous December, I explained that I was enrolled in a low-residency MFA program and traveled twice a year for 10 days of classes to complete my degree. They wanted me so badly they agreed to this arrangement.
So one Friday afternoon I got in my car and drove out of New York City to Mystic, Connecticut.
It took FOREVER.
If you’ve ever driven in Friday traffic out of NYC, you know.
But I finally made it to Mystic and drove over the low stone causeway to Enders Island.
The evening began with a wine & cheese reception under a huge white tent on the green. I could see the Long Island Sound in every direction. A light breeze rippled through my hair. I felt like I could finally take a deep breath.
Two days later, during an afternoon break in classes, I went swimming off a nearby dock with two friends. The sun dappled the water and I flipped over to float on my back. I closed my eyes and thought, THIS is what it means to be alive.
Not working myself to death in a badly lit office.
Being outside. Connecting with friends. And writing.
It took me another year to leave that position and that commute, and another 6 years to leave the organization and strike out on my own.
Yet that moment in Mystic is always tied to my deeper knowing of what it is to be alive.
That’s why I’m holding my writing retreat there.
Here’s what I know about you, dear heart:
Writing makes you feel alive.
Whether you just started writing or have been writing for years, if writing makes you feel alive, I made this retreat for you.
I just added a special Christmas surprise: if you sign up by December 24, you’ll receive a private, 1-hour coaching session with me in February before the retreat.
(Already signed up? You’re already getting this bonus! Surprise!)
December 20, 2019