It is not an overstatement when people say that the writer’s life is an isolated one, and even though most writers prefer to work alone, they will all need feedback or at least encouragement and a chance to share ideas with others at some point. Attending a writer group is an awesome way to accomplish this but sometimes finding one that will fit the author’s needs near their location is hard to do. In those cases why not create your own writers group? Creating your own writers group has many perks like providing writing tips, achieving discipline, broadening horizons, and the benefit of establishing friendships with like-minded people.
Here are some tips for starting a writers group:
· Find compatible writers. Ask any writers you know if they want to be part of a group and tell them to invite their friends as well. Set up a time and place to meet. Figure out any details about what your meetings will look like and specify them on your call out for members. If you don’t know any other writers, find a public place where you can meet like your local book store, library, or even a Starbucks and then create fliers or put notices in the newspapers or on social media sites inviting people to join you for an organizational meeting.
· Decide on the group’s goals. Do you want to share your writing with each other during the meeting? Do you want to spend part of the time writing? Do you just want to talk about writing and share experiences? Just make sure you get what you need from it, since you are the one starting the group.
· Determine the level and experience you wish to include in the group. Will they be all traditionally published novelists, self-published non-fiction writers, or starting writers? Will the group focus on fiction or non-fiction, short stories, or essays? Can your group encompass these different interests and levels, or do you feel a need to split into different groups? Could you have one main group and then some smaller subgroups that split off from it?
· Establish a regular meeting place, date, and time. Make sure the date, day of week, and time are convenient to people. Make sure the meeting space fits your needs, either for quiet, accessibility, room for the size of your group, and comfort.
· Decide on the membership and organization. Will someone be moderator, or will you take turns moderating the group? Will it be a closed group limited just to the current members? Will it be open to everyone and advertised as such? Will it be invitation only to people you know? What, if any, requirements, such as annual dues, will be required of members?
· Decide on the meeting format. You might want to begin with introductions, especially if you will let people come and go. Should you have a set agenda or let it vary?
· Create a membership contact list. Exchange names, phone numbers, and email addresses with each other so you can get in touch if you want to outside of the meeting or if you need to contact each other in case of a meeting change or cancellation. Someone might want to volunteer to maintain a group list and keep notes on each meeting.
Remember that there isn’t a specific formula or frequency for meetings. Keep it light, fun, informative, respectful and consistent to make sure everyone looks forward to the meeting. For more information on how we help writers visit us at www.readerviews.com.