ROCKY MOUNTAIN FICTION WRITERS RETREAT: DAY 2

March 11, 2016

Even though I was exhausted last night, I still had a hard time falling asleep for my nap, but I still managed a 20 minute cat-nap before I had to get ready for dinner. We had chicken alfredo, broccoli, breadsticks, and a salad bar. It was all really delicious! I was pretty caught up, so I forgot pictures. After dinner, we were supposed to have a meet & greet, but we pretty much did that at dinner, so instead most of our group went to the lounge area and sat around talking for about an hour. It was so interesting to listen to the writing conversations and hear from agents, editors, and authors about the industry and what it’s really like.

Oh, and I figured out what happened on the plane. I didn’t know this, but apparently, you can suffer from “altitude sickness” similar to seasickness. One of the ladies I’ve been exploring with has also suffered from a headache, nausea, and dizziness. I guess it’s very common in this area.

Anyway, I was still a bit light-headed during the gathering, so I ended the night and came back up to my room to take a warm shower and relax. I finally hit the pillow at about 11:30 and passed out in two seconds, but I was wide awake by 4 AM (don’t ask me why). I woke up in the exact same position I fell asleep in so I definitely slept like a rock. After playing around on social media for about a half hour, I got up and did some work on my paper for school before I got ready for the day. I was able to head outside to get some pictures of the sunrise.

It was really beautiful but super chilly, so I didn’t stay out long.

I ran back up to my room to grab my laptop and get some writing in before breakfast.

Mealtime is definitely one of my favorite times and not just for the food, even though it is delicious. I love sitting around talking with these ladies and picking their minds about so many awesome writing topics. The cranberry juice is also delicious.

We started off with fresh fruit and had scrambled eggs, sausage patties, and hash browns. If you know me, obviously I skipped the eggs, because… yuck!

After breakfast, we went to our first workshop which was taught by agent Courtney Miller-Callihan. If you’ve never been to a workshop before, GO! It was phenomenal, and it was so intriguing. She gave some really excellent writing advice, and I loved every minute. In fact, I picked up some awesome tips, and I’m actually already working on a new technique. But if you ever have a chance to go to a retreat or a conference it is a must! It’ll be worth every penny, and you will most definitely leave as a stronger writer.

After the workshop one of the other ladies and I decided to go on a little hike up the trail behind the retreat.

We started at the bottom, and everything was going fine, and we were chatting, and it got really hard to breathe very quickly. The lady I was with experienced the same thing and we both got headaches as well. Once again, “altitude sickness” was setting in due to such thin air. But, either way, the view was totally worth it. The pictures don’t do it justice, but it was absolutely gorgeous up there. Once we were heading back down again, the shortness of breath went away, and I’ve been fine all day. I spent the rest of my morning working on my new technique!

Lunch, as usual, was delicious, and once again I forgot pictures, but we had salad, HUGE chicken salad wraps, mushroom and spinach soup, and Rice Krispies for dessert.

Right after lunch, I headed back to the room and changed, and the same lady I went hiking with earlier called an Uber for our next hike. Anyway, we had the Uber take us to the Garden of the Gods. It was spectacular. The views of the mountains and the rock formations were just incredible.

There’s a rock formation at the very top of the picture called the “kissing camels.” The pictures honestly do not do justice to the beauty and size of these rocks.

Just to give you an idea, that’s a rock climber in the center there.

It was just breathtaking. We had to climb a lot of stairs and some pretty sketchy rocks to get up there, but the view was completely worth it.

I am so happy that I’ve had the chance to explore such a beautiful, natural place. I can’t wait to see what tomorrow holds.

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