November 2022, preferred pronouns: she/her
While I was there, I spent my time working on my novel, Open Air, a historical novel about a community of formerly enslaved women and children who encamp with Union soldiers during the Civl War. I was able to refine the outline for the book, write about 10,000 words, and read several pieces of historical documentation.
What I found most useful about my time in Brewster was the supreme quiet and simplicity of the residence. Because I am a parent and I work full time, finding that kind of solitude is quite rare. I was in residency during the darkest days of winter, and I found that my ability to think, and rest, and actually dream, fostered a days-long reverie with my novel: a communion, you could call it. I especially enjoyed the chef-prepared meals, the vast supply of firewood and the rituals of firekeeping, and the ability to work out in the gym. All of these supported my body and helped keep my mind clear and energized.
I am deeply grateful for this opportunity and am very honored to be one of this year’s fellows.