I just love my writing group.
I have been attending Write Links for three years now, and over that time, I have:
- learnt more about the art and craft of picture book and middle grade writing
- attended numerous professional development workshops with many established writers in the field
- met the amazing Leigh Hobbs, whose characters my children and I grew up with
- been on a writers’ retreat run by one of the members where I met John Marsden (who was doing a master class) and made friends with Robyn, Debbie, and many other writers
- attended the CYA conference
- pitched to an agent and a publisher at the CYA conference
- made a successful ASA mentorship scholarship application and been being mentored for the last 12 months.
And those are just some of the highlights!
But one of the biggest things I love about my writing group has been the creation of some friendships that sustain me in the hours of writing. I think of writer friends: Jocelyn, Ayesha, Ali, Jillanne, Yvonne, Shannon, Sam, Rachelle, Charmaine, Andrew, and Jacqui; imagining and day dreaming, drafting, researching, editing, writing, submitting and succeeding, submitting and being rejected, and because they just have so much passion for writing doing it all over again.
Before and after the sessions today we were able to have a chat not only about how our creative endeavours are going, but also about life itself, how it inspires and sometimes challenges the creative journey.
There was so much positive energy, and there’s often some great news of breakthroughs by our members.
This group of people were so supportive of Magic Fish Dreaming, and just gave me so much confidence that I could achieve my dream to have my book produced and out there. My first supporter in the kickstarter was a Write Links member, and many, many members gave their sincere support. Everyone is honest and I know they would not have done this if they didn’t have confidence in the book. These are not only friendships I respect, but many are professionals, and have been traditionally published.
An unexpected treat of Saturday was a writer friend from Cairns, just happening to be passing by with her son. Lovely to see you Carol. The Cairns writers’ group run a fabulous festival that occurs every two year, and that I have attended twice, and they also published my poem, ‘Grumpy Fisherman’, (which became the centre piece of ‘Magic Fish Dreaming’ in my children’s poetry book) in one of their writing anthologies. It was so fantastic to say a brief hello. Carol could feel the warmth and energy of Write Links, and they in turn could sense I was seeing a significant fellow creative from my old home!
I especially love chatting with dear friend Ayesha. We both share a love of music, and poetic language. Ayesha and I are thinking of having sing a longs between writing group meetings, and discussed mindful singing. She showed me a book she thought I would like reding.
Music sustains me when I am having a challenging day writing, or in life. It is great to have other common interests with my creative friends, and I am so looking forward to reading the draft of Ayesha’s novel and seeing it in print!
I love the way we believe in the value of each other’s work and keep encouraging and supporting.
The generosity of members to share their knowledge is legendary. At Saturday’s session Karen Tyrell (long time member and empowerment author) and Luise Manning, both shared their knowledge on the grant application process at our first meeting of the year.
Anyway that’s my account of the first meeting for Write Links of the year. Only another month to wait for the next one, or should I say to write and read my way to the next one.
A big welcome to all the new members; here’s to a great year for all wherever you are in your writing journey.