5 tips to DIY a blogging retreat!

August 6, 2015 Blogging 33

I was always envious when I saw authors tweeting about writing retreats.  The idea of a time out to indulge your passion sounds like bliss to me.  But I’m not an author, I don’t have the spare funds for a fancy retreat and I don’t really have the time either.  So I decided to just make up my own version…a DIY Blogging Retreat!


This basically just involved me heading off to a coffee shop for the afternoon and enjoying a few hours of uninterrupted blogging fun.  I can’t recommend it enough and thought I’d share my 5 top tips with you if you fancy doing one too.

5 tips to DIY a blogging retreat!


Convenient Location: I choose a local coffee shop as I knew that I’d have access to their wifi and I also love the buzz of coffee shops.  Other ideas are libraries, bars or even a shady spot in your own garden.  The main thing you want is a change of scenery so you aren’t sitting in your usual spot, looking at the usual view.

Turn off Social Media: Otherwise you’ll just be too distracted.  The aim is to focus on blogging and get stuff done!

Have an agenda: I was aiming to work on 4 blog posts and refused to get distracted by other things.  Make a list and stick to it.  Unless of course a moment of inspiration hits, if it does harness it and ride with it!

Tell your family you are uncontactable! Unless it’s an emergency.  And no, asking what’s for dinner later is not an emergency.  This is your time, don’t feel guilty, we are all entitled to time out and a part of why a retreat works so well is that you don’t have any other calls on your time for those few hours.

Pack your Bag!  I put together my ‘kit’ to make sure I had everything I needed.  For me that was my laptop (make sure it’s charged), my phone (for taking photos), my planner and a notebook.  I also needed a pen and post-its but forgot them so planning in advance helps to prevent annoyances like that.

My Experience with my first DIY Blogging Retreat:



It was a huge success!  I started off with a yummy Cajun Chicken Salad for my dinner because it’s easier work on a full stomach 🙂  And I got so much done!  At home, I’m constantly jumping up to do this and that or answering the phone or turning on the TV.  Getting myself outside my normal zone was just a lot of fun.  I was able to fully focus on my goals and I achieved them all.  So much so that I plan to make this a monthly event.


Bookish Chat : Have you ever thought about a blogging retreat?  Do you like the idea of treating yourself to a cheap and cheerful one?  What essentials would you bring with you?


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33 Responses to “5 tips to DIY a blogging retreat!”

    • trish

      It was nice for a change of pace and I found I could really focus on blogging so yep I’m calling it a big success 🙂

    • trish

      Yes it was lovely to turn what can be an anti-social hobby into more of a social one. Guess you’ll have to stick to the coffee 🙂

  1. Daniela Ark

    oh Trish… me in a retreat? in a cafe, with a salad, coffee, my laptop, five hours of uninterrupted writing? this sounds like a dream…

    I pull “all-nighters”, mostly on Fridays or Saturday nights, after everyone went to bed. I write and schedule as much as I can between 10:00 pm and 3am. Usually I eat something not that healthy like cookies with milk 🙂

    Maybe in 12 years when my kids are gone I’ll take a retreat 🙂 and I’ll follow your tips but I’ll add my iphone and music 🙂
    great post
    Daniela Ark recently posted…Writing tip: 6 places to find inspiration

    • trish

      Music would be a good idea. I do love the buzz of conversations around me and have to admit to a little ear wigging 🙂 And sadly mine was more like 2 hours than 5 but it was fun and productive while it lasted 🙂

    • trish

      It was a lot of fun and I can’t believe how productive I was. The lack of distractions just made everything easier. I know I’ll be trying to do it monthly from now on.

  2. Lola

    This sounds like a great idea. Although if you have a computer instead of a laptop it works less well as you can’t as easily carry that with you somewhere. I usually fit blogging in between my other tasks for the day, but I can imagine how nice it would be to just take a few hours off and focus on getting those posts written. And that salad looks pretty yummy!
    Lola recently posted…Lola’s Ramblings: My Bookmark Collection

    • trish

      The salad was delish! Next time though I think I’ll just stick to coffee as eating did take away some of my time. That is true that if you don’t have a laptop you can’t do it. But you could just bring a notebook and make a list of blog post ideas or brainstorm a post or use a calendar/planner and make a rough schedule or even draft review notes. I found getting away from my normal environment was just a little different and was worth trying.

  3. Rita @ View From My Home

    Sounds wonderful! I got a new desktop computer instead of a laptop when my old one “bit the dust” so this wouldn’t work for me, but how great for many others! Good idea to not take any calls except emergencies. My kids, even now when grown, don’t seem to understand that and my daughter will call to ask when I’m coming home. etc. 🙂

    I have in the past done something a bit similar…taken a notepad and pen to my huge county library and sat in a quiet area and written up blog post drafts and lists of books for my wishlist. The idea is to carve out “me time” and it will work fine. Great post!

    • trish

      I love the idea of taking a notebook and jotting down ideas and thoughts for the blog. That would work anywhere and I think just getting outside your normal environment gives inspiration. Plus anything that shakes up your everyday routine can be fun.

      And you hit it on the head, it’s all about me time. And for me, me-time with my blog is precious!

    • trish

      I do think that would be a lot of fun too. But I think there might be more talking than working on blogs 🙂

    • trish

      You should, if you get a little free time, it’s easy to do and feels like such a treat. But a productive one!

  4. Christy

    I think we should do a real blogger retreat, and I nominate Ireland as the destination. wonder if I could work that into a tax write-off …. lol. That’s such a good idea though, even a few hours for yourself.
    Christy recently posted…The Veil by Chloe Neill

  5. Jessica@Lovin' Los Libros

    I LOVE this! I always feel like I need a change in scenery, but I never get around to doing it! (Usually it’s my laziness) Totally agree on turning off social media. That is a downfall for me because I tend to get distracted easily. I also like the agenda. I think I might need to write one down soon because it’s so easy to get off track!
    Jessica@Lovin’ Los Libros recently posted…Mini Reviews: Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson and Fire by Kristin Cashore

    • trish

      Social Media ruins my productivity so I knew it had to go if this was going to work for me! The change of scenery adds a little fun into the mix and it felt great to have a little treat but still get so much done. You should try it Jess!

    • trish

      I’m the same at home. I often think more blogging when I’m at home than actually blogging. But here it was my sole focus and I got so much done. But it also felt like a treat.

  6. Red Iza

    It sounds lovely, but living in a village and working all day, the first point is already a problem, lol ! So I make my own blogging retreat when my boyfriend and daughters aren’t home 😉 I can really understand how you might need some space/time to do what you want to do – go girl !!!
    Red Iza recently posted…Review / Sarah J. Maas : Crown of midnight

    • trish

      A blogging retreat at home works too! It’s all about just carving out some time to focus on getting blog stuff done!

  7. Jackie

    This sounds like a great idea, and I think I need to plan one really soon! Of course blogging from the comforts of my home (and pajamas) is lovely. But, sometimes something as simple as changing scenery can refresh ones mind for creativity. Plus, it just sounds fun to make an experience of it. I can totally see it now. Great scones. Great coffee. Productivity. I think I need to schedule my own blogging retreat!
    Jackie recently posted…A Saturday Morning Particular

    • trish

      Blogging in PJs for the win! But it’s nice to get dressed up and take blogging somewhere social too. It feels like a treat but a productive one.

  8. Dee @ Dee's Reads

    Ohh I love this! I do love to do this, but you just helped me realize what mistake I usually make when I go! I don’t turn off social media 🙁 it starts with commenting and then before I know it I’m on Twitter Facebook Instagram and it’s been three hours and I’ve only written half a blog post >.< eep!
    I found that Starbucks isn't good if I wanna have a long session bc I need food usually at some point so I go to a place with food and wifi, so,etime said McDonald's bc they're usually empty big and I have a big iced coffee and sometimes a fish sandwich, although since I've been trying to eat less sodium and fats I haven't been so I need to find a new cafe to haunt!
    You've definitely inspired me to do this. Now that I've moved to a new area it's time I find a new cafe to retreat to and blog in the village! 🙂
    Dee @ Dee’s Reads recently posted…Muirwood: The Lost Abbey

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