Writing alone together

fireWriting is a solitary profession. Even when I’m writing a business article and interview people, my mind is sifting facts, separating the wheat from the chaff, discovering those kernels that can grow into a story. Finding that opening, building the case and closing with a sharp snap all occur in my head where outside noises and activities can’t penetrate.

So, last week’s Charlotte Writers’ Clubs activities were welcome. At the regular monthly meeting, Janice Holly Booth shared her experiences working with her first book’s publisher, National Geographic, and self-publishing her second. The 75 or so writers listening to her each had wrestled with the traditional/self-publishing question. Then last night, I had the opportunity to join N.C. Poet Laureate Joseph Bathanti and Charlotte Writers’ Club-North members for dinner, a reading and reception. In looking around at the nearly 100 people that came out on a Sunday night to hear poetry, I thought back to the earlier group. Those of us who write alone gather together to share our common challenges and common love. We find support and inspiration in each other to continue our solitary craft.

I truly believe that within each of us there smolders a yearning to create poetry or prose, music or dance, drama or art. But it’s an ember that needs the breath of inspiration to blaze. That inspiration, that encouragement is there if you look. I have found it in the Charlotte Writers’ Club. With our critique group getting back together next month, I need to stop planning and plotting and let inspiration fan my writing flame.

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