This afternoon/evening, six members of my writing group got together for a new kind of meeting. Instead of having a workshopping focus (where we critique the good & not-so-good points of members' short stories, having read them prior to the meeting), the focus was to discuss writing -- the ups & downs, tricks & techniques, craft, habit, inspiration etc.
I instigated this new kind of meeting because there are number of us in the group who are writing novels, rather than short stories, and so the workshopping angle is less relevant. Since I have not been attending regular meetings, I have been feeling more and more isolated as I pound away at the keyboard alone with only a few kindred souls to discuss things with. After discussions with others, it appeared that I wasn't the only one who wanted to meet with everyone on a regular basis, despite the fact that we wouldn't be workshopping.
So 'SuperNOVA - the next generation' was born.
Today's inaugural meeting was great. Get six writers together and they can't help but talk about writing (or reading). It was just what I needed: good conversations about what and how and why and why not. Ultimately, the challenges we face as writers are remarkably similar, and to be able to share and empathise and propose is brilliant. As time goes on, I anticipate we will start to bring real dilemmas to the table, so we can brainstorm solutions, whether related to plot, character or even time-management.
Today's meeting was drinks followed by dinner, but we're thinking the next one might be a brunch, so that we can all go home and harness our inspiration to write all afternoon. I am seriously looking forward to that already.