Writing on the Stunning Northern California Coast

Near the Sea Ranch Lodge

Near the Sea Ranch Lodge

I've just returned from a week up at Sea Ranch, north of San Francisco on the rugged Mendocino coast. It's stunningly beautiful there, and a balm for the soul. For the past three years a group of women writer friends and I have decamped together for a writing retreat, and two of those years have been at Sea Ranch.

It was once a sprawling working ranch, but was developed in the sixties with homes on vast plots with weathered siding and surrounded by natural grasses. The ranch stretches for about 13 miles along the coast, with homes scattered from the coastal bluffs and up to the hills across Highway 1. We stayed in two houses near each other, and walked on the beach and hiked through the tree-studded property. We wrote and talked and read each others' work. It was just what the doctor ordered, and I came home refreshed and relaxed and ready to tackle all the work I had left behind.

I also dropped my daughter off at her friend's tiny studio in Oakland. The two of them have plans to work and pursue their music and art, with a brief break to go to Burning Man in August. It is the first time she has struck out on her own when I have felt that she is prepared and ready to create a new life. I am very proud of her. For those of you who know about her blind kitty, little Maya-Roo is with her and Anna in their tiny place. So far all is well and they are happy. And so am I.

Deer outside our front windows. They visited us every day. This couple had two babies with them.

Deer outside our front windows. They visited us every day. This couple had two babies with them.

We had several days of fog, but mostly it was sunny and warm.

We had several days of fog, but mostly it was sunny and warm.