My Writing Tribe

Last week I spent a long weekend at a lake house in rural Illinois with ten of the closest friends I’ll ever have. They’re the Dystropians, fellow classmates and writers who graduated from VCFA with me. We live on all sides of the country, from California to New York to Florida, and once a year we get together to talk craft, laugh, and write.

Many of us don’t have writing communities back home, and this weekend is one of the few times we get to geek out, be ourselves, and embrace all things writing. This is my writing tribe. I can’t describe how important it is to have a writing tribe. It’s the one group of people who are going through the same highs and lows with me and understand what it is to sacrifice to write, and to love it with your whole heart.

This year I brought my camera, and I put together the following photo essay of our weekend. Enjoy!

Note: Scroll over the images with your mouse and you will see the full color contrast versions of the images.

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House-and-Tree

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Jessica-Walking

Mary-and-Acorns

Owls

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Writing-on-the-porch

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Meg-and-Tristan-writing

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Rachel-and-bird-house

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Mary-and-Jen-writing

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Blowing-Bubbles

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Jess-and-books

Girls-laughing

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Ingrid-and-Rachel

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Set-of-six-selfies

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It was a magical weekend!

Learn all about writing from this brilliant group of Dystropians. Check out these amazing blog posts they’ve shared:

Want to hear about last year’s lake house retreat?

Lake Houses and Community

Retreat Instagram

Gold leaves danced on the brisk air and dropped into the lake, drawing rings in the reflected sunrise…

I just spent the weekend at a writing retreat in rural Illinois. It was beautiful, quiet, and serene (everything that Los Angeles is not). It was a much needed break from the honking of traffic and the rush of urban life.

This retreat was also filled with the most important writers in the world. The most important writers in the world to me.

This group of writers aren’t published (yet), they aren’t fancy speakers and teachers (yet), they’re my friends. They’re VCFA Dystropians, and the life long support system I created at graduate school. These are the most important people in my writing life, and I’m not sure I would keep writing without them.

Dystropian Retreat

I could gush and gush and gush about this weekend… the inspiration, the laughter, the food, the writing time, but…

My amazing friend, Ellar Cooper, has already summed up the weekend with words of such beauty and grace, I would simply mar the experience by trying to say it any other way. So, please read her awesome blog post, Emboldened, about the importance of community and sharing.

We all need a writing community!

Emboldened