YA Highway has been around for three years, and I think we've bounced around the idea of holding a writing retreat that whole time. Since we live in every corner of the United States and beyond, it was always about half A Very Real Possibility, and half wishful thinking.
Well, last week, we totally made it happen.
|from left, me (kirsten hubbard), sarah enni, sumayyah daud, kristin halbrook, kristin otts, emilia plater, and kate hart.|
Not every YA Highwayer could attend, of course (*sob*) but around half of us made it. Here's how it went down.
- We determined the largest, most easily accessible airport between us all. Since we really are in almost every corner of the US – from San Diego to Seattle, New York to Arkansas – that was Denver, Colorado. Also, one YA Highwayer is from Colorado, which meant one free car for airport pickups.
- We knew we wanted something foresty. Using Google Maps as our guide, we searched all the outlying areas of Denver on VRBO.com (Vacation Rentals by Owners), looking for scenic homes with tons of writing space that could sleep 7+ people. Within our budget, of course.
Luckily, Colorado is OBSCENELY beautiful.
- We did our best to book flights arriving and departing at similar times. We also rented one car (man, car rentals in Denver are expensive. What gives, Denver?)
- We grocery shopped on the way to the rental. Everybody cooked one dinner for the group.
And... that's about it. We kept the retreat informal, and spent as much time as possible just writing
We hosted a Google Hangout write-in with other YA Highway bloggers, did some YA Highway blog planning, hiked, tramped around small-town Morrison, watched thunderstorms roll in and rattle the windows, and talked probably more than we should have. We also watched a whole lot of Olympics.
Outlines were outlined, epiphanies were epiphanied, and foxes were sighted, both real-life and stuffed.
|google hangout surprise!|
Seriously: grab your writer besties.... and start mapping :)