Write Anywhere Venues

Write Anywhere #40


Write Anywhere #40

by Kristin Nador/@KristinNador

How are you doing on your writing goals? Have you been able to set aside time to write? Have you been able to set aside time to let your brain breathe? Is the hammer of daily life getting in the way? You need time to write, but you also need time to brew.

Just like a good cup of coffee needs time to percolate before it becomes that smooth liquid shot of adrenaline you love, your brain needs down time before lovely words and ideas flow. Something that doesn’t have anything to do with the matter at hand, even good hard physical labor where the brain doesn’t have to think much.

It’s then that an idea, a phrase, an imaginative spark will come floating to the surface. This week I found myself in another time and another place that had nothing at all to do with writing. But a few notes scribbled about it led me down paths to help my writing.

Write Anywhere #40: Renaissance Faire

image kristin nador writes anywhere, Renaissance Faire, Muskogee, OK

Citizens of Castleton welcome visitors at the opening procession

Artist Daughter and I went to the annual Renaissance Faire held at The Castle of Muskogee in Muskogee, Oklahoma. (That’s the same Muskogee Merle Haggard sang about for you old-timers). This was our first time, and even though it is a 17-year old tradition, we didn’t hold out hope that it was much more than a bunch of people who like to dress up in historical costumes in a cheesy fake castle. We were pleasantly surprised.

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Dancing around the Maypole

The town of Castleton was really like a Medieval village, with shops, dusty dirt streets and even a jousting arena. But the thing that really brought the town alive were its inhabitants.

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Blacksmith working in the heat of the day

This dashing gentleman made the chain mail that he is wearing. It is encrusted with hundreds of jewels. It cost thousands of $$ to create, he said. Must be his go-to-meetin’ mail. 🙂

The ‘citizens’ of Castleton were completely committed to keeping their characters as real and detailed as possible, from their costumes to their speech patterns to their cultural customs. Monks, pirates, knights and belly dancers. Troubadours, blacksmiths, washer-women and wenches.

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Lovely member of the Royal Gauntlet Birds of Prey and her owl. Owls are very soft and rather scary when they are staring at you. That’s Artist Daughter’s hand petting Scary Owl.

Musicians making merry

Tortuga Twins making merry (They were actual twins)

We watched a wonderful and baudy 15-minute performance of Hamlet starring four actors playing all the characters. Hilarious!  We also listened to the haunting sound of the carillon as played by Cast In Bronze. It was quite amazing, like a piano of bells.

During a break eating falafel above the Jerusalem Cafe, I took a few notes about the importance of characters’ details: everything from their historical surroundings to cultural attitudes to what they might wear in their hair to how they would smell.

Belly dancer waves goodbye

I would encourage you to try to find a historical re-enactment group or event in your area, whether its a RenFaire or a Chautauqua or a Civil War encampment and experience the attention to detail. It will help you think about the details in your stories. Even if you write contemporary fiction, its important to be true to the times your characters live.

Where did you write this week?

Question: If you could live in a certain historical period, when would it be and why?

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5 replies »

  1. What fabulous photos! You captured images with the eye of a writer, looking for details and expressions that reveal character. The Renaissance/Elizabethan period would be fun. Maybe even the 20s. Perhaps I would stand next to Elizabeth Cady Stanton and fight for women’s rights. Honestly, I am pretty sure I am right where I need to be. 🙂

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    • Thanks! I know all the ‘citizens’ at Castleton must love their time period because they were so devoted to it. As a woman, I don’t know how far back in time I’d like to go, but maybe I’d like to go to the future where women will rule the universe. Kind of like Wonder Woman but without corsets. LOL

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  2. I would love to live in Stirling Castle during the early sixteenth century. Ren Faires are a lot of fun for all the writing reasons you mention. You’ll find the characters you met at the Faire will stay with you for a long time and they’ll show up in unlikely ways and places in your manuscripts. The owl is gorgeous, I’d like to find a place for him in my book. LOL

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  3. Kristin –
    Thank you so much for your kind words about our Festival!
    We hope that you will come back and visit us again this year. The 18th Annual Oklahoma Renaissance Festival opens on May 4th…and Castleton has all new things to see and do this year! You can also find us on Facebook as The Castle of Muskogee.
    Warm regards –
    Tess Nichols
    Assistant Manager, The Castle of Muskogee

    PS – Your photo of the Tortuga Twins is actually of the Jester Rejects. Yes, still twins! And very funny! 🙂

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