Returning to my Writers Group

group

Back in November I was patiently waiting for my January knee operation. Well, not exactly patient. I wanted to get the damn thing over with but the scheduling side of things was out of my control.

Around the second week of November I received a call. A cancellation had occurred. They wanted to know if I’d like to move my January surgery to November 30th.

Yes, I happily answered. Well, not happily. Let’s face it, who enjoys surgery except for the surgeon who relies on it to buy nice cars.

But it was nice to get the thing over with.

The next day I contacted my writer’s group and informed them I’d be out for a while. How long, I explained, was anybody’s guess?

 

Seeing what I missed

As some of you know December was kind of a haze for me, but by January most of the hospital haze had worn off. With a clear mind I began to realize how much I missed my group.

At the same time I began to understand how important that group was to me.

I realized it wasn’t all about my work and what they thought, in fact most of it had to do with listening and learning.

I never gave this much thought until I returned. The routine was familiar and missed. During my first night back we spent part of our time working with another writer’s story and the other half with mine as I asked for assistance on an annoying plot hole.

In that moment I understood the importance of belonging to a writer’s group.

 

All about the atmosphere

Many of us work with writers on-line. I do to and it all comes down to geography. Many of my writing friends live half a world away while others live across the country.

How nice it would be if I could see these people every week.

But there is something special when it comes to being in the same room with other writers. The social environment, sharing a laugh or listening to ideas.

Let us not forget the atmosphere. In my case an old bookstore in the old part of town.

Tsunami Books 1

 

There’s nothing like it.

 

Little things that matter

So many things were brought to my attention that night and I know a lot of it had to do with my long layoff.

The way they listened before giving their opinions. The way they handled feedback and above all the great respect they have for one another.

Most of all it was talent. I am surrounded by some of the smartest people in this craft. Their goal is for their fellow writer to improve. There is no competition in this group.

For those of you already in a writers group you know what I’m talking about. Your group is just as special as mine. But for those without a group I hope you become part of one someday.

Nothing compares to the social climate surrounded by others who push you to succeed. You will gain confidence, you will lose your fear, but most of all you will add a special group of friends to your writing world.

writers group

54 thoughts on “Returning to my Writers Group

      1. There might be one around here, but all the books would be in Korean! 😀 There an English bookstore is Seoul, but it’s too far away and doesn’t have any hangout space inside. That being said, the library on base here is getting an internal coffee shop, so…

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    1. Hi Paul. So much of it is finding the right fit. Take your time. Go to one or two and see if the setting is right for you. Eventually you’ll find the perfect fit.

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    1. That’s a shame. It’s the best way to meet other writers. You learn so much. Don’t give up. Try starting another one or see if there’s a group out there that is a good fit for you.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Sounds like a great group, Bryan. I used to have a small group of writing friends, and we would meet at a local bookstore. When it closed, the group kind of fell apart. I’m blessed that I have a fabulous online group, but you’re right—there is something wonderful about an in-person relationship.

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    1. My on-line friends are the best. It would be great if we could magically meet once a week. Try to create or find another group if you have time. It’s good to get out and meet others. We do so much on-line it seems.

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  2. Love that old book store. What an excellent place to meet.
    I was part of a writing group many years ago and loved it. The group eventually disbanded, people moved away. These days I work with critique partners online, but I do remember the days of meeting locally. Good for you!

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  3. I love this post and the beautiful way you describe the group and your feelings about it. I have been thinking about this topic a lot. Many of my online writing tribe I would love to meet with in person. I am lucky to have found a great writing group locally as well. What I get from each group is dramatically different which is where I am in the “sorting hat” phase of my thinking. Your post makes me think and helps my thinking become a little clearer today – thanks.

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    1. Hi Tammy. Thank you. That means a lot. I’m glad you found a local group to meet your on-line group. When both are a positive it’s the perfect mix, isn’t it.

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  4. I’d guess Writing Groups are very similar to any group hobby, shared interests, having fun, finding time for a natter with friends because at the end of the day all human beings are social mammals.

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  5. Social mammals we are. I should get a hat that says that. 🙂

    It’s healthy to get out of the house, away from our computer and pretend it’s 1985 all over again.

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    1. Interacting with others in something that is important to you can be intimidating.

      I won’t lie, joining my first group was a scary thing. The plus side to all this is once things settle you realize they’re trying to figure things out the same way as you. In other words, we’re all in this together.

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  6. Being close enough to gather in person on a regular basis is wonderful, Bryan, and a good group as well. There is something about getting a group of writers together in the same room. When we have our writing sister reunions, the creative energies swell. It’s a wonderful–and educational–experience!

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  7. A writing group is a magical thing. It’s not all about reading your own work and getting feedback, like you said, a huge part of it is listening, having respect and gleaning titbits from your fellow writers that will inevitably help you grow. Now I miss my group! Still, I’m hoping to get a new one started soon.

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  8. As you know, when it comes to crawling out of my shell, I totally freeze, but I feel like I am not going to get where I really want to go if I keep writing in a bubble. I need to get the f..k over myself basically. I know this. Easier said than done, unfortunately. But, how does one begin? How do you find a writers group?

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  9. I would search for local writers in your area. See what you can come up with. Maybe the local University. Do a search of your towns name with local writers and see what happens. If not, try a bookstore and see if they have a weekly meeting with writers.

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  10. Welcome to my blog Writer’s Info Blog. I started blogging several months back because I enjoy writing about writing and I found an outlet where I could post my work for free and share it with other writers. Writer’s Info Blog is for poets and writers – it’s simply a bunch of articles written by the one and only – me, of course! Each article is filled with basic ingredients on how to write, so if you’re a newbie or need a little inspiration to get you started writing again, you can benefit from my blog. https://writersinfoblog.wordpress.com/. Feedback and opinions are appreciated – feel free to reply or respond to any of the articles or poems found on this site.

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