Once upon a time, my bio said that despite being born in the Big Apple, I lack a fondness for big cities … with the exception of the Big Easy–or at least its French Quarter, as this photo illustrates. No, I’m not drinking two beers. One was my sister’s (she’s the photographer) and, in fact, I was drinking a soda.
I used to love going to writers’ conferences. Ironically, the best ones I attended were with RWA in New York City the year one of my daughters turned 11 (she’s never forgiven me for going away) and two in New Orleans, one with RWA and one in connection with my award nomination for my first mystery, Second Time Around, which will be re-released later this year. There’s no greater feeling than the satisfaction of chatting with other writers.
I was almost thirty years old before I experienced that feeling. Until I stepped into my first writer’s meeting, I’d always felt just a step out of whack with the world. Certain things would tickle my funny bone in a way no one else understood. I thought my imagination was wonderful thing but, sometimes, other people thought it was scary. Then there was the fact that I couldn’t go anywhere, and I mean anywhere, without a notebook and half a dozen pens.
The moment I stepped into the monthly gathering of a group of writers, I knew I wasn’t really a step out of whack with the world. The disconnect I’d been feeling only occurred with people who weren’t writers. The immediate sense of understanding, the way we all looked at life from a quirky perspective, the unique (and often bizarre) senses of humor and imaginations … what a relief to know I wasn’t alone!
Since then, I’ve felt that same connection with not only writers but also musicians, artists, and those with a creative bent to their minds. It’s the community of writers. We all understand community in the sense of society, social standing, and in business.
We see that hashtag #writingcommunity all over social media (I’ve been using it a lot lately) and it’s no small thing.
Recently, I’ve become very involved in a couple of the writer’s groups of which I’ve been a member for years. I’ve also joi8ned a new group. And the interaction on Zoom, via email, on phone calls has done a world of good for me. My boyfriend brought this to my attention. He said I seem happier and more engaged with the world. I’ve also become more productive–not only with my writing but with everything.
So, thank you, my fellow writers. You who have appeared on my podcast, who have welcomed me to your online meetings, who have helped me promote my own books and events. Together, we support each other and can accomplish anything!