Hell is isolation: joining the community can also be a good thing

I don’t know whether Fran Wilde is an introvert or an extrovert or a bit of both, but this guest post at Bibliotropic is in some ways an answer to the earlier post.

What I would Give Up Writing For

Fran Wilde is in the interesting position of coming back to writing after having given it up for practical reasons. This is a post about that. But it is also a post about what a writer can get out of joining writer’s groups — which I never have and most likely never will, so this is a good reminder about what those groups should do:

I was able to pick up my writing again, and stick with it, after giving it up for a long time.

I did that by going to writers’ workshops, finding a community of working writers, and listening — or trying to — when someone complimented my work. I began to get stable ground beneath my feet in a new way. And that was vitally important to picking up my writing again and getting rid of the bad reasons for not writing.

I started writing late-ish in life, but when I started, I got very early support from family and friends (“It was just like reading a real book!”) (Yes, that was exactly the right thing to say.)

For writers who put their writing aside for whatever reason, if they don’t have other early support when they pick it back, I can see how joining writers’ groups could offer that support. Here’s a good post by Holly Lisle about picking a writer’s group that will in fact be supportive and useful.

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