Sunday, January 08, 2006

Step Away From Your Computer

Writing is a solitary pursuit. Even if you have a writing partner, you sit down alone to work. One of the cures for the isolation is an internet group and writer's list. I belong to several - for erotica, for speculative fiction, for queer writers, etc. and they are fantastic resources. I've raved any times in this blog about the best writer's community in the world, the Erotica Readers and Writers Association. My other lists are good and useful in their own ways, but none comes close to ERWA.

Even in LA, it's difficult to find other writers to meet face to face. For someone who lives in a small town, it can be almost impossible. That's why the internet is so wonderful. Somewhere out there is a group for a writer who has a hard time finding other writers.

But sometimes you just have to step away from your computer and talk to another human face to face.

This past Saturday, I was blessed to have a small gathering of writers over at my place. This is the second time I've hosted, and I plan to try to do at least two a year from now on. There is no substitute for sitting down over a meal and discussing writing. Not that we limited our far-ranging discussion to stories, writing styles, or the business of writing. We talked about everything and had a great time doing it. One thing about writers - they tend to be very curious, intelligent people. If they don't know something, they want to find out. Never a dull moment of conversation with a group like that. Although the party went very late into the night, and I drank more wine than I usually do, my mind was so full of ideas and conversation that it was hard to get to sleep.

I can't imagine having writer's block after a night like that. I woke early and wanted to dive into a million projects. I learned, I helped explain, I gossiped. It was lovely. Try it some time. If nothing else, you'll give your keyboard a rest.

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