Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The Writing Community

When I am in a writing mode I tend to hide away from the world. I get lost in my imagination for hours on end, sometimes longer. Most of the time my teaching career prevents full and multiday writing sessions. But, if the timing is right, I will go away for a few days for my own private writing retreat. I am desperate for one now but its not possible at the moment. Oh, well. 

I cannot, however, live in isolation. Nor do I want to. If there is anything I learned during the two years when I was completing my MFA, it is that community is vital to the process. Poets seem to be more natually inclined to socalize. They host endless amounts of poetry readings and gatherings. Fiction writers, on the other hand, hybernate. 

In an effort to encourage fiction writers out there, I'd like to tell you about the lastest community event I was able to attend. Last week I was able to visit the Ovitt Family Library in Ontario, Ca to hear a presentation by Maurene Goo, who wrote the young adult novel Since You Asked


During her presentation, Maurene spoke about how she first found her character's voice (a Facebook quiz), and the events that encouraged her to write and finish that first novel. For me such presentations are helpful because I feel encouraged when I hear other author's stories. I can't help but telling myself that if they did, so can I.

Maurene ended her presentation with a few writing tips.

The picture is a bit small, so I'll list them. (1) Write everyday. (2) Read a lot. (3) Keep a notebook with you to write down story ideas. (4) Turn off the internet. (5) Music. (6) Coffee. (7) Cats. (8) Shut off all the noise. 

If you're looking for another community event, check out the Inlandia website. They organize lots of great events. I host their San Bernardino workshop, which meets at the Feldheym Library. Our next meeting is Tuesday, October 21st from 3:30 to 5:30. 

When I was there last week, I came across this flyer. Hopefully someone reading this can take advantage of this opportunity. 

Happy reading and writing. 

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