Why writers need to spend time with other writers

Utopia Authors, Blog

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I know how cozy it can be wearing your yoga pants and Minion slippers, while blasting [insert inspirational/motivational indie band here], typing along in your writing cave. But here’s the thing: everything can be going along all hunky dory — you’re killing your word count goals, you remember to shower, the house is running like a tight ship — and then BAM, some THING happens — you get stuck on a scene, you read a bad review, you see how successful some other author is on Facebook, your rank slides on Amazon, you think a word that you’ve spelled over a million times suddenly looks funny, you want to know how to build an email list, your family interrupts, a neighbor or stranger tells you they want to write a book too but can’t find the time, or you just start thinking the walls are closing in on you.

Any of those things, or one of ten thousand others can throw you off your game. And, while your family may be supportive and awesome, you need more. You need someone who knows what you’re going through. You need people who understand the good, the bad, and the ugly of why you put yourself through all of it….every day. You need other writers.

There are many things that being around other writers can do for you. But here are the big ones:

  • Feedback

Other writers can not only give you feedback on your work in progress, but they can give you feedback on your life — no you’re not going crazy, yes, you should do X or Y.

  • Troubleshooting

Other writers can help you get over the humps. When you’re struggling with writing, marketing, business, or relationships, the right tribe is generous with their knowledge, tips and time.

  • Camaraderie

While writing may be a solitary sport, it needn’t be a solitary life. Nothing beats good conversation, and just plain ol’ having fun. Doing that with other writers makes you part of a bigger community.

  • EnCOURAGEment

Other writers have gone through what you’re going through at some point or stage in their career. And, they also know what it feels like to come out on the other side, triumphant. On those nights when you think you’re running out of time, out of energy, or out of heart, sometimes you just need to hear the cheerleaders on the sidelines who believe in you even when you don’t.

The nourishment and nurturing that your tribe/squad/peeps gives you helps you to grow healthy and strong. So join a writing group, find a book club, go to conferences (*cough cough*), go on retreats, create a private FB group, do things that give you access to people who will lift you up, shoot straight, and help you shine your light.

Now you tell me in the comments what I missed. Why do YOU need to be around your writer tribe?

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