The CsJCC convened a series of writing retreats this month at Hotel Miramar in Bournemouth for its academics to set aside some time to write. With other pressures and distractions often eating into research time, the retreats aimed to provide a relaxing and recuperative space so CsJCC academics could focus on writing or progressing research projects.
Hotel Miramar, a holiday home for JRR Tolkien on Bournemouth’s East Cliff, and the late summer sunshine were a perfect combination for people to finish off papers, chapters or catch up on reading before the start of the new academic year.
Organised by Dr Jamie Matthews, the retreats were a great success:
‘Being in a space that is detached from our normal work environment and a block of time without distractions is key to creative and critical thinking, writing and research. I managed to write up the text for an entire three-fold that we’re producing for the 10th anniversary of the GPSG. I also redesigned and updated parts of the website, so all in all this was very productive. The Miramar is an excellent space for such an exercise as it has both the facilities and the ambience to inspire you and get you writing. I think we should consider making this a regular event for academics – the return on investment in turns of productivity and outputs is definitely impressive.’ – Roman Gerodimos
‘I wrote/revised four-and-a-half lectures in the space of a day, and in the second session completed and submitted a book proposal! – going somewhere specifically for the purpose of writing helped me to ignore my email and other distractions and just focus on getting the work done. The Miramar was a great space to do this in.’ – Julia Round
‘Therapeutic, uplifting, totally necessary in order to refresh the intellect and do sustained thinking and productive work.’ – Jim Pope
‘It was a great experience. I honestly believe I sat in the same chair as JRR Tolkien when he wrote The Hobbit. I could feel his energy seeping right through me, spilling out through my finger tips. I also got the privilege of listening to a very interesting conversation outside the window, which gave me great insights into life after 70. So all in all, it was not only inspirational but also educative.’ – Chindu Sreedharan
‘Efficient and relaxing!’ – Einar Thorsen
‘So chilled & inspiring I felt I could have written an epic saga … great entertainment from the oldies was an added bonus!’ – Frances Hawkhead
‘The writing retreat was an excellent way to get away from the daily hubbub and actually get some uninterrupted time to think and write. It’s something that I think should become part of the work week and that the University should highly encourage and support the development of.’ – Ann Luce