character development, critique, critique groups, ficiton, inspiration, library, marketing, mystery, non-fiction, plot, poetry, POV, publishing, reference, research, romance, schedule, writers, writing, writing group, Yuma
So you’ve started or found a writing group now what can you expect.
If you’ve found a group you may ask if you can attend two or three meetings before you decide to join especially
ally if they have a membership fee. Realize that a group may not be right for you. Perhaps all they offer is critique and you want information on publishing and marketing. Maybe they don’t offer critique and that’s what you’re most in need of.
Maybe the group is too critical and not supportive of you efforts. Maybe they have been a group for many years and don’t seem welcoming to new people. MAYBE it’s all about personalities and the tension in the group makes inspiration impossible. Don’t stay – leave – RUN for the door nothing kills creativity like a group of writers that don’t support you. Look for another group or find like-minded writers and start your own.
So you’ve startled a group now what? Well what you do is up to your membership. So let me share what kid’s group does.
First find a good place to meet. Our group meets in the library. They have rooms we can use, ours has flat screen TV’s which we can use for presentations, even hook to the internet to find content, also it’s full of books for reference or research and being a public place means no one has to feel obligated. It’s a good fit for our group, quiet and with resources. Our group is also a library program which means or meetings are posted on their calendar for patrons to see. This brings new members to our group.
Second set a schedule. Once a week, once a month whatever works for your group then time morning, afternoon, evening, weekday or weekend. I’ve met at all these you have to fit it to the needs of your members. Since Yuma is a winter destination most of our members are retired even those that live year-round are retirees that decided to move here. We do have some younger members and they have children so our early afternoon meeting works for them but if you have a group of working people you may want to meet evenings or weekends.
Third or perhaps it should have been first what kind of writing is your group about poetry, fiction, non-fiction or maybe your group is genre specific with only writers of romance, mystery. Sci-fi. Of course you could be like Write On The Edge and welcome all writers. I’ve heard of a group that only welcomes published authors in our small community.
Fourth what will you do in your meetings, critique, presentations about the mechanics of writing(plot, POV, character development) or will you explore marketing(building a website, making an author page, writing a press release) or publishing ( writing a query letter, finding an agent, writing a synopsis).
So find the fit for you and then be a good member. Contribute, appreciate and be inspired by those who are like-minded.