Writing is a Solo Task…

Typically, you write alone. Occasionally, you might write poetry in a circle.  Or take a creative writing class at the local community college where you do some in-the-classroom writing. Or participate in a writing workshop where you write with others and share ideas. However, writing really is flying solo.  Are all writers introverts?  I think that there is a necessary tendency towards inwardness.  A writer emerges from his or her writing cocoon, goes out into the world, harvests material and then returns to process and create.  I envision the spiral symbol as something I ride.  I go up and out and broaden my experience.  I gather and take in information.  I send it downward and inward for processing and integration. In some way, I have been changed and this is reflected in my writing.

Julia Cameron and others encourage the writer to sit in a cafe, on occasion; to change up the places where you write.  And that’s fine, good and fun.  You’ve added variety and spice to this otherwise solitary journey.  However, writing remains for me a solo task.  I have to then be comfortable with my “aloneness”.  To commit to writing is to accept this.

That said, how do you grow a support team?  There are definitely writer’s groups that you can join.  Or you can form one around the particular genre that is yours.  You can check with your local library or Chamber of Commerce to see what might be available where you live. Are any of these a fit for you? There are online writing forums where a writer might find support and be able to ask questions. If you take an online writing course, a Facebook community often forms around the course and sometimes the participants continue to connect once the course is complete.  For myself, I spend enough time at the computer and think it would be better to belong to a physical group rather than another virtual community.

Also, having a personal support team in place is helpful.  Even if this team isn’t composed of writers, gather around yourself those who appreciate you as a writer–those who foster your commitment to writing and support your creative goals.  I do think it helps if those who make up this intimate circle have a commitment to an art or craft themselves. They are going to have a better understanding of the creative process, of what you experience as a solo writer and the type of support that you need.

Take some time to consider how you feel supported (or not) as a writer (or artist) pursuing your craft.  Write about this in your journal. Is there some other way in which you would like to be supported on your writing journey? Write this down.  Do you have any ideas about how you can get the support you need and desire?  Note these also. Consider how you can creatively find ways of getting these needs and desires met.



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