We Can Do It - My Writing Community

Katherine Longshore 4 Tuesday, July 10, 2012
Look around you.  What do you see?  I'm willing to bet that you can see at least one piece of evidence that you are not alone in the writing world.  (hint: you're looking at it now).  But there may be other pieces of evidence.  An e-mail from a writing buddy.  An Internet page opened to a Facebook group or a writing board like Verla Kay's blueboards or a listserve.  A trinket given to you by someone who supports your efforts.

I have a framed copy of the World War II-era Rosie the Riveter poster "We Can Do It!" from an old high school friend who doesn't write, but reads everything I send her.  I have the little certificate stating that GILT is a Junior Library Guild selection that was forwarded to me along with an encouraging note from my editor.  I have a button that was printed and given to everyone in the  Class of 2k12 quoting member J. Anderson Coats (it reads: "Writing?  Sometimes it's not sacred.  Sometimes it's like making ground beef by pressing a live cow through a colander.  It's messy and hard and unglamorous and really quite insane, but at the end you can still eat a burger.")

And I have the blog you see before you now.

My writing community is wide and diverse and extends further than I can imagine.  It includes all the people Donna mentioned yesterday.  It includes the YA Muses and the Apocalypsies and the Class of 2k12.  It includes book bloggers who love the same kinds of books I do and even those who don't, but who love books passionately and are never afraid to talk about it.  Librarians, especially the ones at my local library who recommend books I might like (including Robert Massie's incredible biography of Catherine the Great) and recommend books for my kids.  Booksellers who are always happy to see a reader.  Members of the SCBWI who I've met through conferences and local schmoozes.  It includes the friends of writing friends who have now become my friends because we all share the same passions.

Writing.  And books.

OK. Yes, I know this sounds like a Utopia.  One, giant, happy network, right?  I know that's delusional.  But remember, we're talking about MY writing community here.

My community is supportive, honest, pragmatic.  My community doesn't envy my success, nor does it exult in my failure.  It doesn't compare notes (well, she got to go to X conference but wasn't invited to Y signing...) or put me on a pedestal just because I'm published.  It doesn't assume my life is all diamonds and roses now, nor does it sneer when I flail over a first draft.  It picks me up when I fall and tells me honestly when it's time to get back up again (even when I'm not ready to hear it because floundering in the mud is easier than pushing that cow through the colander).

My community tells stories like Myra McEntire did on her blog yesterday.  Stories that end with You.  Can.  Do.  It.

My community is your community, my friends.  It takes a village, and we're all in it together.  You are my community, and I thank you.  For everything.


My most profound discovery upon officially entering Bloglandia as a writer was the generosity of spirit in this community. Amazing.

It is SO time for an interwebz group hug!

The blogging community really does rock. Writing peers are supportive, encouraging and uplifting.

Okay. Now I better stop before I get all teary-eyed :-)

Wow on Myra McEntire's post! If that doesn't make me want to write then nothing will.

I've always said the book blogging community is a friendly place, everyone willing to help you out with a question or ideas. I don't know the writing community, I know the YA Muses and Leslie Rose and Words in Sync. That's my fault, I haven't sought anyone else. But from what you say it sounds like they are just a great as book bloggers.

But as a book blogger, if feels like a scary leap to make to the writing side of the blogging community. Like I'm trying to infiltrate the forbidden camp. I'm glad that your community is so positive. Surrounding yourself with negative people would definitely be counter intuitive!


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