Saturday, May 18, 2013

Meeting other writers

I'm on submission. My book is being read by some very big publishing companies. It's definitely a rush, but it's also pretty stressful, and the free-floating anxiety surrounding the process makes me less inclined to dive into any creative writing projects.

When I'm not in Production Mode, you can bet I'm in one of two other states: Consumption Mode or Socializing Mode. In other words, when I don't feel like writing, I'm either reading good books/reading about writing OR I'm trying to connect with and engage other writers.

Production Mode is pretty all-consuming and usually eclipses all else when it's going on, so when it's not on the table I have time to do an awful lot of the other two. Lately I've been really craving connection with other writers, and that's part of the reason I started this blog; it seems like a good vehicle for getting in touch with others while still allowing me some semblance of Production Mode (even though it doesn't involve writing fiction). But I've also really been wanting to meet other writers locally, and today I got to do that a little bit.

I was over at SCBWI the other day and I noticed a local YA writer named Taylor trying to get a group together, so I e-mailed her and we set a date. Another YA writer was supposed to be included, but she never confirmed, so Taylor wasn't that surprised when she didn't show. We hung out in a Barnes & Noble and got to know each other, and it was a really good time--very refreshing, too, to find a young writer who's ambitious and has her head in the right place. I really enjoyed chatting with her, learning about her experiences, talking about writing and editing processes, discussing our dreams, and talking an awful lot about books we love and books we don't so much love. (Yes, we discussed The Hunger Games, Twilight, and Harry Potter. Why, oh why, did we not have all day to ramble about stuff?)

I'm looking forward to more chats with Taylor, as well as hopefully getting myself some more friends who write. It really helps take the edge off a little bit while I wait for book news. And then, once it happens for me, I'll have people around who not only want to celebrate with me but also truly understand what it means to chase this dream and get there.


  1. Hi there! Bumped into your AW post, and here I am. Seems you have been at it for a while. Your advice has helped answer a few questions even without me asking them. I have a ton of things going through my mind and the typical "who would want to read my work." How do you get around that issue? I thought my support 'group' was awesome, but it was in fact a new-car-syndrome that wore off after a week or so. Lastly, I am so glad I am not the only one.

    1. Oh yes, been at it a long time! This blog is new, but I've been writing forever and have had an online presence since 1997. Hope you might want to start following. :)

      What questions did you have that I answered, and what questions remain? Feel free to contact me privately if you'd rather. (My contact info's on all my blogs.) My main site also has a series of "On Writing" essays with some useful info.

      When you ask "who would want to read my work," are you looking for critique partners for books in development, or are you asking a different question about your ultimate audience? Just let me know. :)

    2. Ta for responding! The "who would want to..." is merely a personal feeling of mine that who would actually want to, or care about reading my story. The questions answered are in your other posts regarding choosing a typical genre with typical scenario's or endings. To be honest, I am not bothered if my story sounds cheezy or soppy (again my own doubt in my ability), it is a personal journey spanning 20 years. The fact that I have managed to sit infront of a blank screen and paint it with words and emotions is a big plus for me. I have also sent drafts off to 'friends' and some have raved, but then some didn't. I also had a editing student assisting me, and although it did wonders for me,that person has fallen off the face of the planet. I am now left to my own devices and the next part of my quest is to get reviewers or critics to 'be brutally honest.'

    3. I see. Well, from what I hear, AW does have critique boards and threads for finding critique partners, but you can also look for help at places like , and I know critique partners and groups are forming all the time at WritersNet (

  2. Thanks again. If I came across as arrogant, I apologise. I know what I want as story, and at this stage am not worried about genre etc. I just need assistance in how to tell it professionally. I will adapt to 'norm' requirements when I start my YA series about a mutant ant popcorn thief - Lol. Thanks