The Year of Fun #39: A Writing Retreat in Lewes

This week I’m sharing my self-made writing retreat in Lewes that I took last weekend.

writing retreat lewes

I would say lovely Lewes, because I have – in the past – really enjoyed a little wander around the small town in East Sussex, about half an hour by bus outside of Brighton, where I am. But I will admit it let me down a bit on this trip.

When I was wandering around looking for a nice coffee shop to start my writing retreat, I was stumped. I could only find about 3 nice looking spots with seats, and they were rammed to the brim. The one place I found big enough to nab a seat, Trading Post, which also has an outlet in Brighton which I love, was filled with total jerks.

I remember watching one poor elderly lady hold a door open for about 7 people, without being thanked or relieved of her kind duty. At least she made a joke of it, saying something like ‘I should get paid to do this!’ but that was my experience too – a lot of miserable looking, rude people. Sorry Lewes, maybe I caught you on a bad day. Maybe Brighton has spoiled me with it’s warmth and politeness.

Anyway, my thinking process was, when I chose Lewes as my writing retreat location, is that it’s close enough to the countryside, the South Downs, that I could maybe take a walk – not the 100 miles I walked last year, but may be a brisk half hour jaunt.

That didn’t happen.

I kind of messed up on my organising. The Airbnb I stayed in – which was absolutely lovely – was a little more on the outskirts than I’d have liked. By the time I faffed around waiting for buses that seemed to get cancelled or never arrive – I ended up walking to the house from Lewes town centre, and by that time I was too pooped to do any more walking. Silly me.

Next time I do this, if I do it again, I’ll set off early, making sure I can check in my bags early, leaving plenty of time to go for walkies before I settle down to writing.

writing retreat lewes

The other mistake I made was that… I planned this earlier this year, thinking I wouldn’t have finished my book, and that I’d need a lot more time to write.

I actually have finished my book, The Creative introvert: How to live a life you love on your terms – and now I’m just editing and sorting out the publishing part. Boring. Not exactly what I intended to be working on, but I suppose it was even better for me to be away from distraction in this lovely environment, so I could really crack on with that.

The Airbnb bed was also the most comfy bed I’ve ever slept on, hands down. And the host was so sweet – as were her two lovely labradors – and she even asked before I arrived what breakfast should she buy. How sweet! This is above and beyond what an Airbnb host needs to do, in my opinion, and I’m already thinking about booking again just for the change of scene.

Fun rating: 7/10

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