Archive for May, 2011

Down Days

Monday, May 23rd, 2011

It’s a down day. The weekend was great; my sister-in-law was in town, and we got a chance to see my daughter’s choir concert. And the weather’s pretty good, with spring finally more or less definitively here (though that also brings the need to figure out lawn mowing soon). But it’s a down day nonetheless.

I’m not entirely sure why. Maybe because I’m still recuperating on sleep I lost over the last couple of weeks due to some urgent work deadlines. Or maybe it’s because I’m at “that” phase in my fiction writing process. (I don’t think I’ve commented here on my perception that each major undertaking includes Despair as a distinct, unavoidable project phase.) Or perhaps it’s allergies. Or laziness. Or some other as-yet-undefined factor.


The Writing Rookie Season 2, #3: The Search for a Writing Group

Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

This post is cross-posted at A Motley Vision. For the complete list of columns in this series, click here.

Back when I was in college, one of the best things I ever did was join Xenobia, an sf&f writing group. It was a great experience. I didn’t do much writing back then, but the process of reading, giving critiques, and listening to other people’s comments taught me a lot about both writing and what I value as a reader. For several years, it served as one of my primary social groups. Some of the people I met there have become longtime friends — people I’m still in contact with today.

As a writing group, Xenobia is no more, alas. (It still exists as a kind of email list where people share news and encouragement from time to time.) And I truly regret it, because now that I’m finally trying to get my own creative writing going again, I find that I need both readers to react to my work and people I can bat ideas around with.