“If you wait for Inspiration to Write, you are Not a Writer, you are a waiter.” Dan Poynter
Writing Transforms & Unites
We are all writers, of course, if you like writing. It does not matter if you write in your journal or create the next great novel. As long as you like the effort of expressing your thoughts and feelings on paper or pouring them onto the computer, you are a writer. The differences are when you decide what kind of writer do you want to be: the one who writes for oneself and friends or wants to reach wider audiences. Well, if you want the latter, there is a little more involved than simply the writing itself—there are rules to be learned, craft to be mastered, publishers to be conquered, and social media presence to be established. Do you have to follow all of them? Not necessarily, but most of them, yes. As a beginner writer, one can’t afford to be arrogant because the industry is very competitive and one will be standing on the sideline holding the piles of his newly published book alone. Although writing is a solitary activity, one needs a community as soon as you decide that you will make more out of it in order to grow.
- One classic way to start is your local library, which may have already a writers’ group.
- Another well-organized option is Meetup.com/ writers’ groups in your area. I used both ways, seven years ago, and that was the best decision I made as a writer. Those are good critique groups that meet in person or online. Some write to a prompt and everyone shares, some are workshops to learn the craft, some invite speakers to discuss publishing, copyrights, or marketing. Like dating, you may check out different groups till you find your perfect match.
- Of course, in recent years, Facebook caught up with those groups too, so you may find your group there too. So far, I have found only the ones that interview writers or facilitate questions and answers treads, but not critique groups.
Since then, I have changed a few of those groups because they evolve based on the organizers and their members, but you will find one that you like and fits your goals, where you will receive and give a critique, write to a prompt, learn about a writing technique and practice it, hear from other writers’ tips, and so many more topics.
If you intend to break the code ‘writing for the sake of writing’, you need a community of thinkers alike, and very rarely your next-door neighbor will be that writer too, so have to make an effort and reach out. Most beginner-writers are introverted, lack confidence, and want to be left alone—that’s why they write after all—to stay away from people. That’s great, but you can’t carry that burden alone like a soldier, it will wear you off. A couple of words of encouragement will do you wonders; you will feel re-charged with new ideas and energy, and soon you might be writing 2000 words per day like Steven King!