My husband and I have lived in both Alpine and Fort Stockton. We love everything about the area -- the people, the landscapes, the weather. I'd just bought a new car, an HHR, and was ready to put some miles on it.
The retreat was held at the Girl Scout Encampment at Miter Peak, just outside Alpine or Fort Davis depending on from which direction you're coming. Speakers included an agent from New York, an editor from Dallas, a bookseller from the Austin area, and a local newspaper/book editor. We'd been given a writing assignment prior to the retreat, so Saturday night after a wonderful dinner, and with a fire blazing in the fireplace, we formed a circle and read our stories - A Peak Experience.
On Sunday I drove to Shafter to visit good friends. The town has very few residents, but is beautiful, interesting, and a wonderful place to take pictures. I was delighted to see the ocotillo were still in bloom. Here are a couple of pictures - one of an ocotillo fence, the other a lovely old catholic church.
All in all, the trip was very productive and inspiring. Since I've returned home I've written two short stories, and as alway, am working madly on my next novel.
If you've never been to west Texas, you don't know what you're missing. Of course, you can experience it through reading -- like in my book and many others based in the area.