As for the actual place? Sorry, but the scene isn't quite like that. We take our shoes off at the door. Cecilia—founder and editor of Circlet Press—reminds us not to let the cats out, and offers us tea. She and her partner Corwin make dinner for us, those attending Circlet's Editorial Retreat, here at Cecilia's beautiful home in Cambridge. I stare at the books in her bookcases enviously, and I dream about finding the time to read them all, to be interested in them all: the bible, and the Koran, dozens of sexy anthologies, science fiction that I've mostly only heard of--Stranger in a Strange Land, and Last Call. Upstairs there are books about baseball and Harry Potter fanfiction, and erotic Harry Potter fanfiction. It's drool-worthy. I want to be the writer that Cecilia is, with my own flair—she writes erotica and romance, science fiction and fantasy, baseball and fanfiction.
I write memoir and personal essays, features and flash fiction, and a hodgepodge of short stories and several novels-forever-in-progress.
The editors and writers mingle. Bethany and Jules, Avery and Bliss. We discuss our favorite books and cats and how much we despise the real world. We hardly ever talk about sex, except in humor; sometimes it seems to be rotting in the bottom of my things to do these days, and for Circlet editors, who are generally working full-time jobs, and sometimes writing their own stories on top of editing anthologies...I'm sure getting to the delicious can seem like a lot of work some days.
The weekend is spent in lecture and exercise: We listen to writers talk about studying the anthropology of people in order to get a better sense of place; we listen to discussions about problematic Tolkien issues; and as this is a place safe for introverts, I wander away during one discussion to climb the stairs and pass out for a wonderfully relaxing hour and a half midday nap. On Sunday we discuss anthology topics, and my favorites are as follows:
- Femdom/Male Sub
- Rural Fantasy
It is a wonderfully relaxing weekend, one that makes me feel more rested than I've felt in a year. My boyfriend came to the Friday night dinner, and Sunday afternoon lunch and wasn't scared away. Sometimes I feel like maybe we ought to be a little more outlandish at Circlet—do things that might freak people out, if only to fulfill their assumptions (desires). But you can read all about that in one of our anthologies--Like a Circlet Editor, if you really want to.
I'm just going to keep on squeezing in time for writing and with luck one of these days I'll be the one hosting some editor and writer retreats—for writers of erotica, science fiction, memoir, and maybe even some YA authors if they're interested. The space for writing is something we each create.