spruce and pine

Paper birch. Distant roar of the wind rocking the tall trees, the sound of the sea. The strobe of light and shadow breaking through the branches. 

I’m  at the Leighton Studios at the Banff Centre. A generous component of my writer-in-residency, it is such a privilege, a treasure of time and space! The studios are single detached specially designed buildings placed amongst trees. Each studio is kitted out with a kitchenette and washroom. The last time I was here I would stay up until 3 or 4 AM, walk back to my room in darkness, between the creaking night language of trees. This was way back when, when I was working on The Water of Possibility. It was a prime example of circumstance/environment working into the text. I wrote, mostly at night, in the dark. So, I ended up writing a lot of scenes in the novel set underground, in caves, tunnels, etc! 

This time I’m working on my companion novel to Half World. The working title is Darkness. <grin!> 

I’ve decided that since this is a retreat I will not read any online newspapers while I’m here. I usually read several every day, rather compulsively. And it’s an important part of my reading/research day. But it can also distract as well as take me into a psychologically tired and sad place– there is much woe, suffering and injustice in the world, and the news foregrounds this. 

I will let the roar of the wind, the language of the trees guide me.