I’ve been thinking about my writing journey thus far. It’s been a tumultuous one – at least emotionally. Why has it been so emotionally charged? Because as an unpublished writer, who is passionate about my craft, I put in the hours to make my stories shine. Or at least I try to.
Why is this bad?
It’s not. We should hone our craft as a writer. After all, doesn’t practice make perfect. Yes. But there's a little known truth, at least in my world, that if you try to do something and after a certain time frame it doesn’t work, you need to stop. To some people, what I do at the wee hours of the night, on my lunch break at work, during the early morning hours before everyone else is kicking, is a hobby. Yes, I’m sorry. I said it. A passionate hobby. That’s what people perceive our efforts as. Not all…but many.
And, truthfully, that assumption used to really irk me. I said ‘used to’ because I try not to allow someone else’s perception of what I do affect me. Their perception won’t alter my passion for writing. It won’t make me stop doing it, or even apologize for it. It only ‘used to’ infuriate me. Not so much anymore.
Well, I found this nifty thing online called: the writing community. Writing can be a lonely endeavor. You sit at your keyboard or with paper and pen alone. For hours. You go through most of the process entirely by yourself. Some people don’t even have critique partners. They are trapped in a maize of perpetual loneliness and torn between their love for the craft and the biting words of others about that passion.
Those naysayers can go kick rocks!
Newbie writers need to take advantage of the writing community. You won’t survive if you don’t ever associate yourself with like minded people. That’s why religious people have church….to fellowship with other people of the same faith/belief. That’s why there are adult sports leagues…for sports enthusiast to find a release with others who enjoy the sport they love. And that’s why there are hundreds of sites dedicated to writers. Here are a few of my favorites:
YALitchat – a great writing community. You can share blog posts, get help with your query, synopsis, and MS. You can share exciting news about projects and learn about other writer’s success stories. It’s a great site for those who write children’s books.
SheWrites – this site is similar to YALitchat except, as the name implies, it caters to the woman writer (but I’ve seen a few men on the site and they didn’t get lynched for being there).
Miss Snark’s First Victim – this is a blog run by the anonymously great Authoress. She offers tons of critique opportunities and exposure to agents through her many contest. Can’t say enough how helpful and fun this site is!
CBI Clubhouse – this site is similar to YALitChat and Shewrites. It’s dedicated to those who write under the children’s umbrella. There are forums to meet and greet/find CP’s and more. There’s also tons of helpful info about the writing process and publication. This site, however, does have a small monthly fee.
Please, please, please seek out these groups/organizations. Writing can be lonely. But you shouldn’t have to feel this way when there are thousands of people, just a click away. No, I can’t promise you these organizations will ensure you get an agent or published, but they lighten the load. They understand your pain – they live it, too. Trust me…you’ll be a happy writer for it.
Have a great day. Read a book and laugh!