Reading has always being a huge part of my life, the writing not so much. It is only in recent years that I have finally given my passion for writing free reign. But one thing I have definitely learned over the last few years is that writing can be a lonely journey. I can honestly say I am quite comfortable in my own company. But there is something about the solitary pursuit of writing that can make you feel isolated.
The antidote to that, I have found, is writing with a friend or friends. It can make a world of difference. I equate writing to having multiple personalities … you spend so much time “talking” to your characters that they become real to you. Something a non-writer doesn’t get, so you end up coming off like somewhat of a fruitcake. (This is a serious thing … LOL! )
Bless him, my husband will always take the time to listen to what I have to say if I need someone to talk to in the moment (other than the voices of my characters in my head) but he doesn’t get it, not like my fellow writers do. Because, see, they suffer from the same fruitcake-y-ness. They too have those voices that speak only to them and so can relate completely.
The other fabulous benefit of writing with friends is the flow of ideas, the sound-boarding you can do about plots, characters or any number of other writing related issues, and then, of course, the general sense of camaraderie. I have found that with a group of amazing ladies through being a member of the Romance Writers Organisation of South Africa (ROSA). It is a ragtag mix of published and unpublished authors, traditionally published authors and self published authors, newbie and seasoned authors, and everyone brings something to the table.
Some absolutely fabulous ideas have come from such collaborative writing days. But best of all, one of my fellow ROSA’s is a friend of many years (too many for me to own without giving my age away ) and we have regular writing dates. It helps us to be productive, get the job done and not feel like we are the only living, breathing thing on planet Earth.
So, if writing is your thing and you have moments where you feel cut off from humanity find someone you can organise writing dates with. Or find a writing group to join. It does wonders for the soul and the creativity to know that you’re not alone. You can generally find a local writing group in your local newspaper or you could probably find them online. Alternatively, if romance is “your bag baby”, as Austin Powers would put it, check out Romance Writers Organisation of South Africa. There are chapters (pardon the pun) throughout South Africa.
In the end, though, regardless of whether you prefer to go it alone or seek out likeminded people, love the journey. Love the writing.