Writing Groups

 

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Writers like to discuss their work with other writers, much like painters tend to hang out with other painters. A lot of it has to do with support.

Being an artist is not for everyone. There is a certain level of uncertainty attached to artistry that some people are uncomfortable with. The majority of writers for example are not connected in any way to the top levels of success. There is much more certainty in other professions. This is one of the reasons writers groups are becoming more popular – they serve as a great support system for people who already make a living from writing, want to make a living at it or just write as a hobby.

I have been writing my entire career and just recently joined two writing groups, one in my local neighbourhood and one in a town not far away. Both groups serve as great motivation for future projects. I always walk away learning something from our discussions. It is also nice to know that I can share my knowledge with those who are new to the writing game.

During one of my last meet-ups a discussion came up about the most difficult part of the writing process. Several people stated that the middle of their stories often fell flat while the beginning and end tended to be stronger. We each threw ideas on the table for improving “the middle”. Some of the ideas were note-worthy, others were destined for the trash. The discussion eventually parlayed into a debate about the best guides for those who are new to writing.

I won’t say one writing guide is better than the other; however when it comes to beginning, middle and end, Nancy Kress does an excellent job in her Elements of Fiction Writing. She shows you how to find effective ways to tackle problems as you build your story. Everything from creating drama, revealing characters effectively, developing credibility and controlling prose is covered in this guide. Following the advice in Elements of Fiction Writing-Beginnings, Middles, Ends can help writers get their story off to an exciting start, keep the readers engaged through the middle, and end with a bang. Easy exercises are included in the book to help you strengthen your writing skills.

If you are a beginner or amateur writer, Elements of Fiction Writing is a tool you might want to consider.

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