Joe’s Post #80
We had a chance today to go over our stories with the 5/5/5 group, today. Everyone brought their ideas. Everyone shared their thoughts, suggestions and advice. Each story was better off for the grilling. Way better.
It’s what makes our group work.
I think that’s the toughest thing for a writer’s group to achieve. Longevity. Too often, they fade away. Sometimes they explode. Sometimes the one person, the driving force, leaves and the rest lose interest.
But we’ve survived because we adapt. We overcome. We improvise. (To quote Clint Eastwood from Heartbreak Ridge.) So, I wanna say we’re kinda like marines, but, you know, with less tattoos and missing limbs.
When we first got together, we looked at 30 page submissions. In all honesty, I learned as much from doing the critiques as receiving them.
Then we came up with the brilliant idea of 5 writers getting 5 books written in 5 months. Then added to that fun by critiquing the books. The whole books.
Now, it’s time for us to morph again.
Time to shake it up.
We’re all ready to start new novels. But if we do 30 pages, again, it could take 2-3 years for us to finish one.
Should we try another book in 5 months? We proved we could do it, but was it the best book we could write?
We could do more work on the outlines, but that would also postpone the actual writing we were all so keen to get started on today.
So we evolve.
We’ve learned that deadlines work for us.
So we’ll have those.
We’ve learned that we need to meet more than once every 4 months.
So we’ll meet more often.
We’ve learned that our books are always better for having the others take a look at them. But we write at different paces and not everyone has time and energy to pound out one if 5 months.
So we’ll all bring writing to every meeting. We’ll all be working on our next book. But what we bring and what we want from the group will be different for each person, for how fast they are writing, for what problems they are having, for input into what’s working and what’s not.
Maybe we’ll need to know if the opening works and get the group’s input. Maybe we’ll brainstorm a sagging middle. Maybe everyone will look at me and ask, why are you writing 50 Shades of Joe? Who knows? But the writer will dictate the focus of the group.
And hey, if it doesn’t work, we’ll evolve, again.
Next time, though, I want to evolve to be taller.
Blogs written: 3 this week.
Blogs posted: 1 (the other two are lurking, waiting for me to post when you least expect it!)
Great Blogs to Check out: Janet Reid – Agent
Outlines Done: 1 Big and messy. Like me.
Queries Done: 0 (If this is 0 next week, someone kick my sorry ass.)
Number of Teeth Removed: 4
Date For New Braces: Feb 3rd
Number of Tickets Bought for Spamalot: 2
Number of Months with the Amazing Blue-eyed Girl: 11