Excuses? I have them in
abundance. I’ve just come out of a literary dry spell that I’m blaming on
illness, end of school madness, end of year
work deadlines, Christmas (shopping, cooking, entertaining) and catching up with friends. When push comes to shove, I didn’t make writing a priority for a few months and felt lousy
You’ll be happy to know that I’m back on the straight and narrow, but ‘how?’ you ask. Come closer and I’ll let you in on a secret. I owe it all to other writers. No silly, I don’t mean
someone else has been writing for me, but that they have reinspired me.
I can honestly say that one of the most rewarding and motivating parts of this lonely profession is… all the other lonely writers. From my experience writers are wonderfully generous people, open to sharing tricks of the trade, offering a shoulder to cry on, and a boot up the backside when needed (snigger).
I strongly recommend that those writers who have been battling away alone, or are just starting on this exciting journey, join at least one writing group. Don’t be shy about asking questions and trying them out once or twice before joining. After all, writing groups are as varied as the writers themselves. No matter which one (or two) you choose, you can be sure to gain valuable information and support.
Over the years I’ve been a member of four groups and tried out another two. Those venues were where I met my critique partners and confidantes, not to mention learnt something new every week. As my writing skills grew and ambitions changed, I needed to move on to different groups, but I’ll always cherish each one.
So, go ahead and contact your local library or writer’s centre and start networking! Here are a few links to get you started.
South Australian Writer’s Centre
New South Wales Writer’s Centre
Queensland Writer’s Centre