Tag Archives: amwriting

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Alaska at 40 below

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A few weeks ago I had the privilege of going to Fairbanks for a writing retreat.

Yes. I said Fairbanks. Alaska. In January.

Here’s the thing, last fall I was in a bad mental space as a writer. I felt grumpy, unworthy, and had imposters syndrome breathing down my neck.

So, when Craig Martelle put out a call for writers to come to his home town for a writing retreat, I was like, “Fine, I’ll sign up for your stupid retreat and you can reject me and validate my feelings that I’m a failure as a writer.”

Three days later I got the invite to come.

I was shocked. I might have cried, and this was the conversation opener with the hubby. “Uh…honey…do you want to come to Alaska with me?”

He, of course, said yes!

What goes on at a writing retreat?

Well, at this one, eight authors sat around a table and did writing sprints for six to eight hours a day. We would type like crazy for 20-30 minutes, then chat for a bit, get up, stretch, walk the dog, and then write again.

Over the course of three days I put 20,000 words on the page! That’s not my biggest number for a retreat, but it’s up there, and I’m thrilled with it!

Between typing and eating, we did things like go outside.
(Hey, when it’s in the -30F range that’s a big deal.)

We made snow angels. (Click here if you’re on Facebook to see the video!)


We drove during the sunset…at 4pm.


We went to some natural hot springs, and froze our hair!


And we stood outside in -40F to take a picture.


And we saw three moose!

It was fun to get to know writers from around the country. It was amazing to experience that kind of cold weather. It was refreshing to get that many words written on a project that’s been kicking my trash.

All in all, I had a great time.
But I’m not sure I’d go back when it was quite that cold.

I sent this meme to the group when, the week after we were there, it warmed up to 0 degrees.

The one thing we missed was the Northern Lights. 🙁
I guess that mean’s we’re going back to Alaska or Iceland. How sad.


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Grandma Jokes!

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Just a quick, fun update today.

I’ve got one book with an editor, I’m 10k into my next book, and I’m editing my post-apocalyptic series so I can get it into audio next year (fingers crossed).

How do I do it?

Great question. Sometimes things go well, and other times things fall to pieces around me like a blizzard.

The one constant, besides my spiritual beliefs, is humor.

My grandma made these silly jokes for her elementary students way back in the day. I’ve really enjoyed going through these and realizing my grandma had an awesome sense of humor!

Go forth and find more puns!


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