Why receiving a NO from @writehedgebrook was a YES.

December 19, 2014:

Dear Katarina,
Thank you so much for applying for a 2015 Hedgebrook residency.
We received 1,466 applications for 2015 and are able to offer 40 residencies. Though your application did not advance into the final round this year, we want you to know that your work resonated with our reviewers.
Sending your work into the world is an act of bravery, and we appreciate the opportunity for our reviewers to experience your voice.
We’d like to share our selection process with you, so you know the thoughtful time and attention your work received. Two Hedgebrook alumnae, who take their role in this process to heart, read your application and collaborated to select applications to continue further into the adjudication process. All applications are anonymous, and any reviewer who recognizes an applicant will recuse herself. Applicants who advance are reviewed by a three-member committee of readers in cities across the country, and then by a five member selection committee in the final round.
We ask reviewers to consider the quality of the writing, the strength of the proposal, and clarity of answers to the ‘Why Hedgebrook, why now?’ question. We are committed to supporting a diversity of voices: cultural, generational, geographical, LGBTQ, by genre, published and emerging.
You are a member of Hedgebrook’s community simply by sharing your work with us. As our global community grows, we are offering more opportunities for women writers to experience Hedgebrook in other ways. If you choose to stay on our mailing list, we’ll share opportunities to write, network, take workshops and engage with writers from around the world. We are committed to advocating for all women writers to gain equal voice in the cultural conversation.


So why is a NO from Hedgebrook a YES?

Because I dared to apply for the 6 week retreat.

To allow myself even the possibility to focus fully on me shows me that my mindset is changing.  I am opening myself to opportunities.

I have worked on my project, Molly, since 2003 through all the blood and guts of life.  Working on Molly is my refuge.  Now I need to give myself the QUIET that she needs.

I was empowered by the application process- empowered by the NO, for it showed me that I am ready to allow myself to now strip away distractions in my life that do not serve me, that do not reflect my value nor feed my life’s work.

I want to give myself to the experience of Hedgebrook- but that need not be at Hedgebrook.

I am expanding my community.  I will eat well.  Walk.  Take time.

Retreat frame of mind.

Hedgebrook state of mind.


My nephew, Henrik, and my dog, Tobey, Stanley Park, Vancouver BC
My nephew, Henrik, and my dog, Tobey, Stanley Park, 2014 Vancouver BC


UPDATE June 15, 2016:


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