Nov 29, 2009

Profile: John Clanchy

Hearty thanks to John Clanchy (pictured below in La Muse's dining room) for this week's great profile! 

1.   What do you consider most valuable about your time at La Muse? The atmosphere of the place – remote, mountainous, forested, a bit wild and yet comfortable at the same time. It is the perfect space for someone who has an artistic project and who wants both peace and solitude for their work, and when not working the company of friendly companions with like interests to talk with, share ideas, try out your work on etc.

2. Tell us, in a sentence or two, about the project you were focused on while at La Muse. In my first writing retreat (two months in spring of 2007) I completed four long stories focused thematically upon father-daughter relationships, which together with one other story written in Australia was published in 2008: Her Father’s Daughter (UQP). In my second retreat undertaken in late spring the following year, I wrote the first draft of a novel, provisionally titled The McLeay Sisters which I re-drafted back home and which is out being looked at by a publisher now.

3. What advice would you give future attendees?  It’s crucial to research La Muse before you go, to realize that when it says that it is essentially a workspace then that’s what it means (though you have lots of fun there too), and that you are disciplined enough in your own life to be able to use the time spent there well. Make sure you have a specific project to work on when you arrive, rather than hoping for ‘inspiration’ to strike once you get there. Be prepared to work hard AND to enjoy yourself – the people you’ll meet there, the beautiful forests and mountains … and French food and wine!

4. Finally, my three French words to describe La Muse? etonnante, feconde, accueillante

If you've stayed at La Muse, we'd love to feature your profile. Please contact: lamuseretreat [at] or leave your e-mail address in the comments. 

No comments: