Camp Barry

Last weekend I attended a working retreat run by my agency, Barry Goldblatt Literary. “Camp Barry” — which is actually run by Barry, Joe, and Beth — took place at Club Med Sandpiper in Florida and consisted of communal meals, awesome discussion groups, and late night pool parties. (I would mention the ubiquitous “chocolate bread,” but that might make you too jealous.)

I’m having a hard time articulating my feelings about the weekend because the experience so exceeded my expectations. Honestly, I thought I’d feel awkward at Club Med, as I don’t often frequent such resorts, but it was really quite casual and convenient. I also didn’t expect to meet such amazing people, and to form such strong bonds with them so quickly. I mean, I suspected they’d all be smart, talented, and funny professionals, but it was their generosity, passion, and authenticity took me by surprise. There was even one conversation that moved me to tears repeatedly, and made me talk about something I rarely ever talk about with anyone.

And hey, I finally got to meet my awesome agent, Joe Monti, in person! That alone was worth the travel time.

Now that I’m home, my brain feels overstuffed with ideas. I added something like four dozen books and graphic novels to my reading list and am dying to read all of them immediately. But the cool thing? I’m not just excited about my own books now — I’m excited about every project I heard about at the retreat. I feel refreshed, energized, and inspired.

So, thanks to Barry, Joe, and Beth, and all the other Camp Barry attendees for a fantastic weekend. I can’t wait till next year!

Any questions about the retreat? Please ask!


Brad Beaulieu 7 years ago .

Um, yeah. I have a question. Can I come next year?

    Jenn Reese 7 years ago .

    What, Starry Heaven wasn't enough for you?!? :-D

Sally Felt 7 years ago .

Now there's a triple play worth celebrating — "refreshed, energized and inspired!" (On the other hand, fearing you'd feel awkward at a resort earns you an eye roll. So, repeat after me: "I am worthy. I am mighty. I can be my authentic, super-spiffy self ANYWHERE I go." Better yet, print it out and tape it to the mirror.)

    Jenn Reese 7 years ago .

    I was more worried about my lack of appropriate resort clothes! But okay, okay — point taken. :)

stina 7 years ago .

yay! i'm so happy about how things went too. it was so worth going. it really really was. the bonus chocolate bread and judgment orca were merely extras. (wait, if we weren't talking about the chocolate bread, was i not supposed to mention judgment orca?)



    Sally Felt 7 years ago .

    Judgment orca? There were orca present? That's so awesome. (*whine, whimper*)

      Jenn Reese 7 years ago .

      As Sara says later, the Judgment Orca was inflatable. Replace the family in this picture with tipsy writers in a pool at midnight, and you get the idea:

      <img src="; width="250">

        Sally Felt 7 years ago .

        If you tell me there were otters of ANY kind, my head is gonna explode.

    Jenn Reese 7 years ago .

    One of my favorite memories of the whole weekend was you astride the Judgment Orca, silently gliding across the pool, spreading your stylish judgment upon us all.


Adam Rakunas 7 years ago .

You had me at chocolate bread.

    Jenn Reese 7 years ago .

    Dude. Chocolate bread. That's all I'm gonna say.

Sara Ryan 7 years ago .

and next year you'll be a veteran!

jenn, it was so excellent to meet you. remember that you have portland guestroom access!

sally, the orca was inflatable. (not sure if that increases or decreases its appeal…)

    Jenn Reese 7 years ago .

    I will not forget about the Portland guestroom — trust me!!! And you, my friend, are one of the reasons my head is so full of ideas. Can't get that comic/graphic novel discussion out of my head!

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