Writing Groups: Yea or Nay?

How many of you belong to a writing group? If so, do you like it?

writing, groups, writer, author, book

I’ve always wanted to join one. There’s not much in the way of writing groups or book clubs where I live right now. But! There are groups in the city I’m moving to (hopefully in the near future). I’m pretty stoked about it. There are also plenty of coffee shops and book stores. There’s just more to do, overall. I do have the beach here, though…

If you belong to a writing group, what do you find the most beneficial about it? The least beneficial? Are there aspects about it that you dislike? Whenever I finally get to join one, I’d like to make the most of it. I think having that face-to-face connection with other writers is what appeals the most to me.

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9 thoughts on “Writing Groups: Yea or Nay?

  1. I belonged to a great writing group where I lived in NJ — totally supportive with members ranging from novices to professionals. We were writing everything from essays to novels, from flash fiction to epic fantasies, and almost everyone was willing to give balanced and constructive criticism. That group is still going strong, but there’s no group where I live now. I’d like to start one, but someone else would have to run it, as I’ve got problems with my health. I think the most important things in a writing group is (a) that the rules are spelled out beforehand, and (b) that everyone participates to the best of their ability. Given the chance, I’d definitely join one again.

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    • Good to know you had such a good experience with a writing group! Just makes me even more excited to finally join one. 🙂

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  2. Reblogged this on A Writer Writing and commented:
    Allison asks a great question; okay, there’s two questions. Do you belong to a writers group? Do you like it? I know there are many oppions out there – some pro writing groups and others that are anti-writing groups. Let’s give Allison some honest feedback, both the good and bad. I’m of the mindset of writers helping writers. Allison asks a question that perhaps many writers, at all levels, have asked.

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  3. I’ve been with the same writing group for 4 years and I can tell you without a doubt that I would never have published without the wonderful support and pointed criticism of my peers. My group is very much like the one giffmacshane described, but there are many different kinds out there. Finding one that fits your needs and makes you feel excited about your work and growing as a writer is key. If you are inclined, I think this post on critique groups may be of interest and give you some ideas as you begin your search. Great luck to you! http://mythsofthemirror.com/2013/05/29/writers-critique-groups/

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  4. Writers groups develop their own personalities — as all groups tend to do 🙂 — so a good group can go bad, and an iffy group can suddenly come to life, depending on the writers who comprise it. I have been in many groups, have been wounded by some, but have been encouraged by most.

    Since writing is such a solitary endeavor, a group can provide the necessary society of colleagues. Look for a group with a mix of young and old and in-between, rookie and veteran, readers and writers, grammar nerds and folks who don’t care as long as the story’s good — we need all kinds.

    And if a group doesn’t already exist, start one. Post a flyer at the library, the bookstore, anywhere that you’re allowed. 😉 It’s almost a guarantee there are writers where you are — they just may not have coalesced into a group yet.

    Realize, too, that you may need to move on from a group. As writers mature and hone their craft, they may need to join more challenging company, to be mentored by writers who are farther along the path than they. That’s okay. Think of it as leaving high school for college. Pay it forward by, in turn, becoming a mentor.

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  5. Hello,and I think it depends on what kind of writing group it is. I belong to a little group called The Grounds for Thought literary group that meets at the Taylor Roasted Coffee House in Northampton, PA, and it is very supportive. It is not a critique group, but a place where writers can try sharing their work in public if they choose. As such, it is a very positive experience.

    Liked by 1 person

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