Reading Writers

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Hey, thanks to everyone who responded to my Ten Commandments post below, both here and on Facebook. It’s good to know it resonates with other authors.

It’s also given me a great idea for some posts in future, about good answers to stupid questions.

But today I actually want to talk about my local writing group, partly because I mentioned them in commandment 3, and partly because I spent yesterday evening with them.

I am really lucky to have a fantastic local writing group (it’s called Reading Writers, if you’re interested—mostly because we’re in Reading, but it’s a nice little pun for a group who often end up talking about books we’ve read as passionately as things we’re writing). I found out about it almost by accident. I joined the Romantic Novelists’ Association, and the then-Membership Secretary, Betty O’Rourke, wrote to me when she sent me my RNA pack that she happened to be the secretary of a group in Reading, too—and that they met just down the road from where I lived.

So I went along. I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was unpublished and inexperienced. But the group, made up of writers of all ages and backgrounds, made me feel immediately welcome. They critiqued my work sensitively and, most importantly, we all shared our struggles and our victories. I couldn’t believe what a relief it was to meet people who cared as much about writing as I do.

That was—my word—eight and a half years ago! Wow. And since then, they’ve been a constant support. Members of Reading Writers come to all my book launches and book signings, they recommend my books, they are quick to offer compliments and encouragement and help to me and every member of the group. Every member really is equal and is given respect. They’ve been an enthusiastic and helpful testing ground for every workshop I’ve designed. They’re a very important part of my life now, and I’m really grateful for them.

Thanks, guys. And I’m totally not just saying this because you gave me a bottle of wine for winning a contest with a scandalous article about Mickey Mouse.

So, blog buddies, what support networks have been helpful to you?

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6 Responses | | Comments Feed

  1. The RNA obviously, my local writing group Wombourne Writers, eHarl’s Bat Cave and Romance Diva’s.

  2. Oh my gosh. Subcare at eharl and The Mouse and Pen crew. Have been there since what, 2001? My smaller circle of “friends” I met there – namely my cp who is BRILLIANT and STALWART in her support (doesn’t that sum Michelle up nicely?) as well as yourself and several other wonderful people.

    Then there’s the Calgary RWA chapter, the Atlantic Canada chapter here in Halifax, who are the friendliest, most supportive bunch!

    Finally there are my fellow Romance authors.

    Couldn’t do this without any of ’em.

  3. RNA, RNA, RNA, RNA and RNA

  4. The RNA has definitely been my number one professionally helpful resource, before and since getting published. I talk about them all the time, though, so I thought I’d mention Reading Writers for a bit because they’ve been so constant a presence in my writing life.

    eHarlequin has been really great too, for information and finding friends.

  5. As a person trying to break back into print after a long hiatus, I find the ability to connect with other writers through blogging a fantastic resource – I’d love to have a group like yours. They seem really great.

  6. Welcome Gaelikaa. I get a lot of support from writers’ blogs too and I’ve met many of my closest writing friends online. Though it does help to have people in real life, too.

    Good luck with your writing journey!

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