Tuesday, April 9, 2013


Last Friday I jumped off a cliff in the dark.

For real.

Sure, sure I had a helmet and there was a teeny tiny wire attached to another teeny tiny wire which was presumably attached to something in the dark. I know there was a tree because I got really close to it for about one twelfth of a second before careening backwards to a stop. 

I attended the SCBWI Midsouth Revision Retreat and moonlight zip-lining was the first nights activity. A few months ago I wasn't going to go to the retreat - I just felt squirmy about even saying I was a writer. Then fellow Midsouther Courtney Stevens Potter talked me into being a group leader for the picture book group. I was going to have to jump and hope that I could stay on course - with both rewriting picture book ideas and as a group leader.

I'm really glad Courtney held out that teeny tiny wire because the weekend was just what the doctor ordered for creatives who struggle with creating and recreating amid the noise of every day life. For 36 hours we all took a break from the world and focused on our creative babies. At the picture book table we each bounced around 3 or 4 babies! Revision is HARD but much easier when surrounded by like-minded artists and beautiful scenery (and lots of snacks.) After the weekend I feel pretty confident that I can lash on one of those babies and jump off the next cliff in LA.

Besides turning the creative tap on full force it was also nice to make new SCBWI friends like Heather Dent! Go check out her blog write up. Below are some pics and sketches from the weekend, starting with my sketch of the first nights activity:

The picture book table hard at work. With Mary Uhles, Heather Dent, Hilary Statum and Kim Erickson's talented ankle
Using Courtney as a model on the porch during Saturday's free work time
She was working on being this character
The wall of food was enough to inspire anyone
A bunch of talented writers (and at least one illustrator) who's work is even better after this weekend. Thanks Midsouth SCBWI!


Genetta said...

I'm so glad you made the plunge! You're a great writer, and I'm sure you were a fantastic group leader. What a fun weekend full of camaraderie and creative energy!

Meridth Gimbel said...

That sounds wonderful Mary. Wish I could have gone.