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Writing Buddies - Not Just for November

Lately I've been adding a bunch of friends as NaNoWriMo buddies, and its awesome to have so many. Its wonderful to have that competitive edge, the camaraderie as we all seek 50K in one month. But something occurred to me when I had a bit of a crisis yesterday.

Writing buddies aren't just for NaNoWriMo. I personally think they're for every writer, all year long. Writers need friends who are also writers to help through the tough bits. I found this out last night, when two of my Twitter Friends became, truly, my writing buddies.

I was writing along, though having a hard time getting from one sentence to the next. Something was bothering me and I couldn't figure it out for hours. My muse wanted me to keep going, but I just questioned what she was trying to hide from me. Then I realized I didn't think an aspect in my story was convincing. It was one I had taken from the inception of this idea, but in my regular afternoon slump my inner skeptic felt it was lame and gave me another idea. So I stopped writing, waiting impatiently for a friend to get home from work so I could tell her the problem.

And then she ganged up on me. With my muse. Another friend got on Twitter, and I dragged her into the conversation to take my side. Of course, she didn't. She joined the enemy camp. *grumbles* Traitors.

But it was what I needed, despite my stubborn skeptic. I pointed out all the problems I saw with what I'd previously written, bemoaned that I'd have to start yet ANOTHER rewrite of this story. I showed them what the skeptic saw, the weakness of this particular aspect of the story, the basis of what happens, and how no one would believe in it to read the rest.

They told me I was being stupid. Pointed out to me the good of my original idea, how I'd lose tension and drama if I followed the path my skeptic wanted. I foolishly tried to defend the skeptic, to no avail. So I caved. I then started being whiny in general, about other things I'll not bore you with. But they were stern and completely right, but because they have something I don't.

They have experience. One is published, the other having spent years writing. Both have developed their craft, their voice and their process, where I have only just begun down the path of discovering these things for myself.

They are writing buddies. They aren't there for one month out of the year to tell me to just write, then cheer me if I do conquer the 50k NaNoWriMo thinks I need to be a winner. They are there for whenever I need advice, an opinion, or simply a friend who understands the hardships of writing, no matter what month it is. Yes I'm excited for my NaNo writing buddies, but the good ones stick with you in the long run.



5 Comments

  1. Yes, everyone wants people around them to guide, critique and help reaching the coveted milestone. Writing is such a activity that needs others to guide as writers themselves happen to be myopic and are so attached to their projects that they look over the short comings. it is at this point of time guidance or inspiration or experience of others buddies happen to be useful.

    Internet has really bridged the gap and today it is possible to get guidance in every field and shape or direct specially creative creations.

    This year i have decided to write my 50 K for NANO. My prize would be the manuscript thanks to the pressure.

    Thanks

  2. Nice one. Yes, it can be a lonely business, shut up in your office (OK, back room) for hours pounding out words or, worse, editing. Any encouragement helps. Groups like Goodreads help. And yes, I agree, any online writing friends you make should be for life, not just for November. I can think of at least four who are going to get signed copies of my first book, when it's published.

    Whenever that might be.

    'Cos it's quite likely it wouldn't have been published without their reviews and critiques and encouragement.

  3. David says:

    Nice post! Yes, good writing buddies are there for the long haul, not just the obvious milestones. Good luck with NaNoWriMo, but more importantly, good luck throughout the coming year and beyond.
    Cheers,
    worldblee

  4. Thanks you guys! It may have taken me a bit to find my writing buddies, but they are a very good fit for me. They will definitely be getting acknowledgements and signed copies whenever I do publish.

    ^_^

  5. Trish says:

    As one of the writing buddies who sided with your muse and ganged up on you last night, *preening* all I can say is --You're welcome!

    lol

    And yes, we are beyond nano writing buddies. Right there whacking you. . . er. . .encouraging you when you find yourself wallowing somewhere in the mud off the track-- uncertain just where your muse is trying to lead you.

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