It was April, 2016 and I decided to venture out to the League of Utah Writers Spring Conference. This was my first real exposure to a writing community of any kind. I knew no one except Michael Darling, who I have known for 25+ years.
I’m not introverted like many writers. I did speak up in some of the classes but mostly I sat there quietly, taking in all in. Learning everything I could, even about query letters, agents, and publishing, things I wouldn’t need for a long time as my novel was in its infancy.
Since then I have become a regular attendee at two different league chapters, attended the league Fall Conference, one writing retreat, a handful of write-ins, and some holiday parties. I have even given presentations at both chapters and have another scheduled for March. I have made friends, all of whom I want to get to know better, and met many others that I look forward to getting to know.
But why is this all so important? It’s because these people have shared wisdom and knowledge all that make me a better writer. The in-person contact is much more valuable than the virtual communities I’m part of on Facebook and other web sites.
I know it’s scary when you’re introverted to get out and embrace your community. Not every writer needs to do presentations, but every writer, no matter how long she has been writing, brings something share.
Are you experienced? You know what it takes to write. Published? You can tell others how to do it. Brand new? Your energy is contagious to others, many of whom may have hit the brick wall of writer’s block.
So, thank you, my writer friends, for your energy, advice, and experiences. And to writers I haven’t met. I look forward to meeting you at a conference, chapter meeting, or other event down the road.