Our Writer’s Group with Leader Linda Schreyer (seated) at the Ojai Inn

For the past eight years, the same group of six women have been meeting once a year, under the leadership of editor and writing teacher Linda Schreyer, to share and critique our work. After all this time, we know one another’s work, characters and lives so well, that feedback is easy and productive.

We’ve always chosen tranquil settings, twice in Cambria and six times in Ojai. This year we really splurged and decided to meet at the Ojai Inn and be pampered. The property was gorgeous, the rooms ideal for writing and relaxing, and Linda’s suite perfect for meeting and exchanging ideas. Then there was a spa……yes I booked a facial. It was delightful and the staff couldn’t have been more helpful.

It’s always easy to write on retreat. There are no errands to do, no social obligations outside of the group, and total peace and quiet. I was able to launch into the complex job of rewriting the first draft of my next Hannah Kline book. The new book is a psychological thriller, featuring Hannah’s closest friend Andrea Marcus, a psychiatrist, and her new psychopathic patient. Hannah and her husband Daniel, are struggling with some unexpected developments in their brand new marriage. Stay tuned. I’m hoping to publish this one by the end of the year.

My enthusiasm for retreats led me to organize the very first one for Sisters in Crime LA, which will be held in La Jolla in November. I currently serve on the Board as the Corresponding Secretary for this terrific organization, which brings together mystery writers, all over Los Angeles, for mutual support.