A Community of Writers

I read last night. At a Greek restaurant that is not closed for the event, so I got up in front of friends and strangers, people who came for the reading, and those who just came for gyros. I read from a story that I haven’t workshopped yet that I’d only shown to my husband and read to a few close friends.

Two years ago, I would have been too nervous to do this. Two years ago, I hardly had the confidence to finish a story much less read it aloud to strangers. Two years ago, I was writing at home, alone, showing the fruits of my labor to only a few friends, and only after months of revision.

It’s so easy keep an internal, solitary process like writing to yourself. To fret and worry over every word, to lock your prose up in a tower of your own ego – afraid if the world sees it they would tear it apart. But it is only by setting your writing free, sending your prose out that you can grow and flourish as a writer. And that’s why getting involved in a writing community can be so liberating. Whether that community is on-line like the iwritereadrate.com, do an online search for writing groups in your city, or attend a writing conference.

If it wasn’t for The Muse, and the wonderful community of writers I found there, I would have been sitting at home last night with my thousands of story starts. Struggling, once again to finish something. Lamenting that no one would ever read it.

picture by: Velo Steve