It is near midnight as I scribble this, perched on an overstuffed chair in the semi-darkness of our rented house. Music swirls and fills the room. Three powerful witches gather around the dining room table, the full moon perched above their bent heads. They pause to give into the laughter that bubbles always beneath the surface when we are together. The sheer joy conjured by the joining of their creative talents, and continue to write the song. Magic captured in every word and note. It is a spell that we will carry away with us when we part on the morrow, a reminder of the power and magic of this coven of literary witches.
This past weekend, I attended my annual writer’s retreat. We rented an extravagant Air B n B house and spent the weekend reading each other’s work, eating, drinking, making music and filling our creative wells. I have the best writer’s group. They are an amazing collection of women who nurture me and support me in all my efforts to grow. They inspire me. They humble me. And I love them- hard.
We met four years ago, in the mutual pursuit of learning, at S.F.U.’s Southbank Writer’s program. We plucked up the courage to step out of our comfort zones, and stepped into the light of a brand new world despite the terror each of us felt. Our bravery paid off in that we found each other, our creative tribe of literary witches. How we have grown! How much we have created because of our commitment to each other and to our writing. I am in awe of these five women, and humbled to be counted among them.
We have had two retreats, and based on the deep and engrossing conversation that swirled this last weekend, plan many, many more in the future. I can say, with 100% confidence that any success I experience in the future with my writing, will be due in large part to the love and nourishment I receive from these fantastic women. We are so different- different ages, different backgrounds, different genres and different aspirations. But, we all share a deep and abiding love for each other and want good things for each other. We are committed to supporting each other in the arduous journey towards our goals. We encourage each other in all our creative and life endeavours. We fill in the blanks for each other and are collaborators, editors, critics, cheerleaders, mothers, sisters, partners, skeptics, devil’s advocates and hopeless dreamers for each other. We all dream of the day when we can thank each other in the acknowledgements section of our books. We have faith that we each will have that one day.
My heart fills when I think of these women. My sister witches. My writer tribe. How blessed I am to have them in my life! The greatest gift this creative journey I’ve launched myself on has bestowed upon me.
For a long time I’ve dreamed of writing something that captures each of them- the gifts they bestow upon me and what they mean to me as a person, a woman and a writer. This isn’t it. It doesn’t even come close- but, they are in everything I have written so far and I know they will influence everything I write in the future. Perhaps someday, I will have the skill to capture the magic we are, particularly the special sort we conjure at our retreats. For now, this will have to be enough, because it will tell them how much they are loved, and how I treasure their presence in my life. My literary witches. My muses. My writing group.