Getting what you need from a writing group

In my five years as a professional writer, I have been in only two writing groups.  My first lasted about three years, back when I was just learning the rules of freelance writing (so I could break them later!)   I now call those my “tender ego” years.

Suffice to say, I didn’t even begin writing for the public until age fifty because of my gigantic fear of criticism.  I was a librarian and a scholar, so I regularly came in contact with some of the best writing in the world.  It seemed far too presumptive of me to think I had anything to add to the conversation.

It took a real, honest-to-goodness personal catastrophe for me to decide it was time for me to venture out into the world of freelance writing.  And when the mainstream media rejected my ideas of what needed to me written about, I started my blog Midlife Crisis Queen in late 2007.  Since I seemed to be changing everything else in my life, why not change careers a few times?

At first I joined a writing group where critiques invariably hurt my feelings.  Eventually I pretty much stopped sharing my writing with them. It all felt so personal to me, and a critique usually led to depression and tears.  Like I said, my ego was tender.

After giving up on that group for obvious reasons, I wondered if I would ever find the right writing group for me.  After a two year wait, I recently found a small but cordial group of fellow non-fiction writers I can relate to.  They offer just the right combination of  encouragement, while also challenging me to expand, explore and improve my skill set.

So if you feel discouraged about writing groups, stick to your guns and keep searching.  The perfect group for you is out there somewhere.


About Laura Lee Carter

Laura Lee Carter is the author of this blog and she holds copyright on all materials published.
This entry was posted in Believing in yourself as a writer, Blogging, Learning how to become a writer, Reader's anxiety, Stress Management for Writers, Stresses of becoming a writer, the need to be heard, The psychological challenges of becoming a writer, Writer's anxiety, Writers' groups, Writing and authenticity, Writing and self-discovery, Writing and Self-worth, Writing critique groups, Writing to learn more about yourself and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Getting what you need from a writing group

  1. As a cordial member, I so appreciate your intelligence, history of publishing and constant support. It is wonderful to be among a group of learners.

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