Pull back the curtain and see how a suspense writer puts the thrills and chills together.


TGIF, Dear Readers! The weekend is almost upon us.

The title of this week’s exercise is somewhat of a misnomer. The results probably won’t teach us a lesson, but who cares? I liked the alliteration–so sue me.

I realize that this blog is now read by people from all over the world, and many of them live in gorgeous, even tropical, climates. But many of us in Canada and the States are deep into the long, cold slog of winter. With that in mind, I thought it would be nice to talk about our past vacations.

Tell me a vacation story. It doesn’t have to take place in an exotic locale–just an anecdote from a vacation you really enjoyed. Set the scene–I want to know how it smelled, looked, and felt where you were. You can tell me about how the food was, or some of the people you met. What was the culture like? Did you ever go back? Did you want to? Who did you go with? Was this person someone you would travel with again?

Let’s do some California dreaming on such a winter’s day.

I will post my exercise as one of the comments in order to avoid influencing or discouraging anyone. “Stay-cations” are perfectly fine to use as inspiration.

Have fun. See you on Monday.

Thanks for reading!
1 part newsletter, 1 part unnerving updates,
2 parts sneak peeks of new projects.


  1. Mystic_Mom

    It is very private, almost exclusive you might say. Sandy beach, private dock, fire pit, shelter and a swimming hole. Wildlife, room to play and it is in my pasture! My husband build us a lovely swimming hole with dock and private beach. It is a great place to get away without having to go away.

    My second choice is Nova Scotia- I miss the ocean and the red sand beaches, the green hills and my friends out there.

  2. Lisa

    I’m not sure you’d call it a “vacation” but two years ago I went back-country hiking with my boyfriend. I’d never done anything quite like this (we were carrying 40lb back-packs containing everything we would need for the next 5 days as we were going to be deep in the mountains) and was a little nervous that I would somehow let him down. He told me later that he didn’t think twice about my ability to do this kind of thing, and that’s why he asked me to go.

    This was not your relaxing type of holiday. Every morning began with camp coffee and oatmeal watching the sun rise over the mountain ranges above us. Each day we re-packed the back-packs with all our gear and set off for the next 6-8 hours hiking up through mountain passes and down into valleys on steep grades that burned your muscles. The routine became easier with each day and I began to love the solitude we encountered. We went three full days without seeing another human being. We bathed in frigid mountain streams and sipped drambuie by a campfire at the end of the day.

    The day we emerged from the trails and got in the car for the drive back to Canmore I stared out the window at the range of mountains and I suddenly felt a wave of emotion come over me. My boyfriend looked at me and asked me what was wrong. I told him that I was simultaneously filled with joy (because it had been a life-changing experience for me) and sadness (for I would NEVER be able to fully describe the experience to anyone – it was beyond words). Two years ago and the the five days is still etched in my mind. We are going back this summer for another 5-6 days and I can hardly wait!

  3. Story Teller

    Great contributions, MM and Lisa! I really enjoyed reading about your getaways…they both sound wonderful. Thanks so much for participating.


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