It’s been many years since I was part of a writing group – set up by myself and a few friends in a quiet corner of the local pub. Since then I’ve attended some wonderful writing workshops (www.writinginthehouseofdreams.com) and completed a creative writing and English Literature degree. During all that time I felt supported – by other struggling writers, by successful authors, by tutors. I was always being challenged, pushed to get assignments in, made aware of competitions, asked continuously to share my work, given careful criticism, and a friendly e-mail or hug when it got too hard.
Since this time I’ve carried on writing with the support of my mum and a close friend. But gradually, I’ve slipped back into the mire of negativity, worrying about whether it’s worth this tremendous effort all the time – and that’s just the writing, people will know how rubbish I am at submitting work to publishers! Moving home twice has meant the loss of my carefully nurtured writing practice too.
Anyway, I have finally found a new writing group via an on-line search called ‘meet up’. So this week I met a group of strangers in a coffee shop, except they aren’t strange at all, they’re just like me – people that just inexplicably need to write. With the return of my blog, my new home in good order, and some support behind me, I feel the sparks of excitement about writing again.
It’s so important for writers to have support. Find yourself a group to meet regularly with, create your own, or join an on-line forum. Do whatever you can to secure a place where you can share your writing life, otherwise you’ll feel like the rocks are blocking out the sun, and it’s not a fun place to be.