Facets of a Muse

Examining the guiding genius of writers everywhere

A Weekend with Writers


I hear the door to my room open. “What the–”

“Sorry, didn’t mean to wake you.” My Muse slumps into a chair in a corner of the room. He’s disheveled, and has a grass stain on a shoulder of his rugby shirt. His cargo shorts are wet on one side, and his tennis shoes look like he’s been slogging through puddles.

“I was already up. Where have you been?”

He pulls a flashlight from a pocket and sets it on the small table beside him. “Scavenger hunt.”

Okay, let me think about that for a minute. “Weren’t you out with the other Muses?”

He leans his head back. “Yep.”

“Sooo, how does scavenger hunt fit in? New drinking game?”

“Sort of. A couple Muses aren’t exactly beings, human or otherwise. Couldn’t include them unless we got creative.” He groans. “I’m getting too old for this.”

“You don’t get old. How did you come up with the scavenger hunt?”

“Well, one Muse is a library card catalog, and one is Nature. What else do you do?”

Good point. “Like beer pong? Every time you find a clue you get a drink?”

He nods. “Some of those gals are fast. It was like playing rugby.”

“Hence the grass stain and wet. And I’m sure it was torture to play ‘chase the treasure’ with those women. You’re the only male Muse in the group, aren’t you?”

He stretches, rubs his eyes. “C’mon, love, it’s too damn early for this. Let me rest.”

And so ends a glorious weekend with my Writing Sisters. This year we stayed at a bed and breakfast in a mansion. What a gorgeous house! And a lot of places we could gather in a group. We brainstormed, critiqued, caught up on news, and yes, enjoyed cheese, fine chocolate, and wine.

The local town Square (yes, an actual Towne Square) was about a mile walking distance from the B&B. Good food, reasonable prices, and they didn’t mind a group of 6 writers showing up without reservations.

Will we stay here again next year? Maybe. Or maybe we’ll try a different venue. In any case, we will get together again. We just have too much fun creating and conversing to stop our annual tradition. We’ve got a new writer in the group who fits in just fine, and by next year one of our other Sisters should be back in the Midwest.

If you’ve never experienced a weekend with other writers, try it. If you have a few writing friends you met online or at a conference, and you keep in touch, try gathering for a day or a weekend someplace–a B&B, a hotel with suites that have nice “living rooms”, or a convent or other retreat facility where you can gather together and work. I use the term “work”, because as writers, even brainstorming on tangents is considered working.

This weekend consisted of critiques, suggestions, and brainstorming plots for our writing mentor’s next Fudge Shop Mystery.

Today is our farewell until next time. Next time never seems to come soon enough!


Author: Julie Holmes, author

Pen names: J. M. Holmes, J. M. Goebel A fiction writer since elementary school (many years ago), and NaNoWriMo annual participant for a decade, I've been published in small press magazines such as "Fighting Chance" and "The Galactic Citizen". I write adult mystery with a touch of romance, mystery with extrasensory elements, contemporary fantasy, and epic fantasy, and I'm represented by the fabulous Cynthia Zigmund of Second City Publishing Services. In real life, I am a technical writer with a family of two teens, a wonderful hubby, one cat (what writer doesn't have cats??), two dogs, two chickens, and more chipmunks, squirrels, and rabbits than any garden should have to deal with. My garden, our hobby farm, and Nature's annual seasons are some of my muses.

9 thoughts on “A Weekend with Writers

  1. Oh, it sounds like you had a wonderful time! A weekend like that would be heavenly. I bet you came back all fired up to write 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, I did! I always get a generous dose of creative energy when we get together. This year we spent time brainstorming. Nothing like brainstorming plots for a murder mystery with five other writers 😀 If we all lived closer together, we’d probably meet more often.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sounds like great fun, Julie, for you and your muse. Now, back to work 😀 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sounds like a fun time. Both for you and your muse.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Julie, this sounds like a perfect writing break!! I can feel your joy – at meeting your writing sisters and also at working – writing work- together. Have fun planning your next trip away…Also congratulations to your daughter in passing her driving test – 16! Yikes that seems young – 17 in UK and 18 in Sweden. Your garden produce looks amazing – wow! Be proud and enjoy that home grown delicious tastes! 😀😀😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • We had a great weekend! As for the newly-licensed driver, it’s nice not having to be the chauffeur, but on the flip side, there’s a bit of worry that goes with her driving on her own. All part of the growing-up game. They can get their license in MN at 16, but the caveat is they need to have logged 50 hrs of driving, including 15 hrs night-time driving. It’s a new rule in MN since last year. Haven’t posted pics of the garden lately (but I am picking yummy veggies!) since I haven’t weeded for, like, three weeks. I’m starting to have trouble finding my beets! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

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