what a healthy writing group should feel like

8 thoughts on “what a healthy writing group should feel like”

  1. I think specificity is the key, and working and reading to build up a base of technique where you can speak to subjects specifically. There may be an issue with voice, or Point of View, or say dialogue where characters aren’t distinguished from each other, or aren’t authentic. That allows you to speak directly to a facet or issue, so the writer won’t feel the whole story is rubbish, or they can’t write. It’s in the details. Also keeps it from being ad hominem, Things to watch out for, hidden agendas. And remember some people’s hidden agendas are hidden even from themselves.

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    1. ‘Some people’s hidden agendas are hidden even from themselves’ – I like that, thanks James. Yep, talking about details of the work is important, and another thing I bear in mind is, even if the piece is not to my usual taste, what are the writer’s aims for the piece and how can I help them to realise those…this helps me get my own tastes out of the way.

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  2. I agree with this post. It’s really well-written and I think it expresses exactly what I think about our group, too. It’s amazing, over the years, as an artist, how many people will try to dissuade you, either subtly or overtly, and I think that you have to be really suspicious of this. And know what you mean about other people’s agendas. I am always suspicious, yet, I hope, while remaining open to things. You learn the hard way: By taking a few low blows. Also it’s my belief that the artist’s path is so fragile, so fraught with difficulty; it is, by it’s nature, an almost impossible thing. Therefore, if you want any chance of survival, you need support, good support; support from supporters who are not so far up their own arses that they can’t help a brother (sister) out.

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