Nestled in a church-like building with large windows overlooking the neighborhood, is a little library that hosts a weekly writer’s group every Saturday, where anyone can come to share snippets of their own works-in-progress and critique those of others.
Somethin’ about the Company of Other Writers
I don’t know about you, but the first time I sat in a creative writing class, surrounded by other writers, was the first time I really felt at home in a classroom. I was never all that confident in biology; I never felt entirely comfortable speaking up in math or history (or even English, for that matter).
But in a room with other writers, something in me comes alive. I want to soak up every minute of the experience; I want to hear every word the teacher says, all the thoughts of my peers, and contribute as much as possible. My first time in a creative writing class, at 22, was my first time realizing what I’d been looking and longing for my whole life. And I’ve found it again with this group at the library.
An Open Room with Many Chairs
Each week, the folks who come are different–an assortment of ages, writing styles, confidence levels, and experiences–but we’re all brought together by our common love for writing (and our shameless, common desire to get as much feedback on our work as possible…what?).
Everyone’s work, regardless of experience, is taken seriously and given positive as well as constructive feedback. We root for each other, help each other, and support each other as we stitch our stories together and send them off to the tailor, hoping someday someone will try them on and say, ‘oh, this is just my size!’
Stitch by Stitch
That’s what I love about writing groups. It’s the communal sense of support coupled with the feeling that we’re all moving ahead in our writing. We’re getting better, bit by bit, stitch by stitch, with people there to help us thread the needle each week.
Writing may be work you do alone, but it shouldn’t be lonely work.
Where do you draw support from? Have you ever been part of a writer’s group?