A Wonderful Gift... of Writing Friends

Monday, December 24, 2018
Yes, it's Christmas Eve. The night before a day of last-minute cleaning to prepare for an evening of family fun. It's also close to the end of the year, which makes me reflect on the riches I have.

I'm rich because I have a wonderful family, I love my job, and I have scads of writing friends. Ask me, I'll share photos and stories about my kids and granddaughter. Come visit my classroom, and you'll see why I adore going to work every day. But my writing colleagues? What's that all about?

This is what it's all about.

  • Long-distance writing peeps. I have writing friends in Michigan, Minnesota, Georgia, Florida--even India. They inspire me with their posts and their writing success. If a writer can take over the Korean publishing market with their books... if a writer can make even me finish reading one of their romance books... if a writer wows me every. single. time. with their poetry, it keeps me hopeful that maybe someday I too will enjoy a small nibble of success.
  • My writing critique group. These ladies keep me writing every week. They give me feedback. They make me laugh. Two of them even offered to read my manuscript and give me their honest opinion. (One of them actually read it in less than 24 hours. I might have suspected that they dozed through it, but no--there were notes written and changes suggested and mistakes caught.)
  • My Butt-Kickers group. This is my writing accountability group. We're actually called "Pencil-Pushing Butt-Kickers" and our first anniversary is coming around in late January. Eleven months ago, we all set big goals (to achieve by the end of the year) and now, week by week, we set new, smaller goals along with reporting on the goal from the previous week. My big goal: to get my manuscript published. Is it published? No, but I do have a finished draft (after scrapping it and starting from scratch) and I summoned up the courage to send it off to an editor (twice  now). I would not have finished this manuscript this quickly without the kicks-in-the-butt I got from these writers.
 How about you? How are you rich? Think about it as you shop and wrap and cook and clean today.

Sioux Roslawski is a teacher and freelance writer. All of her success is due to the fact that she receives a little--no, a lot of--help from her friends.


Joanne said...

Happy holidays, Sioux, and congratulations on all you've achieved...including maintaining those rich writer friendships.

Angela Mackintosh said...

Merry Christmas, Sioux! THANK YOU for organizing the Butt-Kickers group! I love all you guys and feel like I wouldn't have accomplished as much as I did without the group. I'm also so grateful for the WOW community--writers, instructors, editors, agents, everyone--because those in the industry get it, and know just how hard it is. Our writing community is powerful and full of support. I'm so excited about your novel! For your writing partner to read it in 24 hours is amazing. I bet it's fantastic, Sioux. You worked hard on it this year, and you should be proud. I hope you and your family have a wonderful Christmas! Now, I'm off to clean too. My hubby made ugly dolls for x-mas gifts and we have fabric and batting all over our dining room. :)

Sioux Roslawski said...

J. Glenn--The Butt Kickers exist (and flourish and achieve) because of you. It was your idea that launched the group, so thank you sooo much. I hope your Christmas (and 2019) is wonderful.

Angela--All I did was invite people--and what an incredible group of writers said "yes."

Ugly dolls? You must take a picture. I'm intrigued. (And your hubby made them... That tidbit makes them even more fascinating.)

Renee Roberson said...

Spot on--the gift of writer friends is invaluable! I would never have been as productive in my writing as I have been without the BKicking group. I look forward to seeing what everyone accomplishes in the next year! What a wonderful testament to your writing that your two beta readers have begged you to read it. Now if only they could only write those queries/summaries for us, LOL! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you, Sioux!

Nicole Pyles said...

What a wonderful post Sioux! I love this! And I'm so grateful that God led me to the BK'ers and the WOW community. I know there's been so much accomplished this year as a result of finding you guys and I'm excited to see what 2019 brings to all of us! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! :)

Sioux Roslawski said...

Renee--That is a marvelous idea. I'll have Linda write the queries, the summaries and the back-cover endorsements. They'll all be perfectly-crafted and glowing if she writes them. Have a great Christmas, Renee.

Nicole--I'm grateful for the BKers, too. They've pushed and nudged and encouraged me through a major rewrite. Without you ladies, I would have been a slug in 2018...

Cathy C. Hall said...

Catching up and so glad I stopped by here because yes, writing friends are the best! Nothing beats the support and generosity and butt-kicking that comes from writer friends from the trenches.

(And that goes for you, too, Sioux! Thank you for ALWAYS putting in a good/kind word --or thirty--to me and countless others!)

Mary Horner said...

Sioux, I'm rich in many of the same ways you are, and feel fortunate. I love the inspiration from my critique group, and although we set goals, don't have the butt-kicker aspect, which is a great idea. I don't really have any long-distance writer friends, but when I have reached out to a few for a quote or to tell them I admire their work, I always get a positive reply. Thanks for sharing! I always look forward to reading your posts!

Sioux Roslawski said...

Mary--I imagine you have long-distance writer friends who are unknown to you. I am almost positive there are admirers and readers of yours, and they live far from you.

It's true: when butt-kicking is involved, it makes quite a difference. Think about starting an accountability group. There are weeks I don't meet my goal and I don't ALWAYS get my rear end kicked, but sometimes... I do.

Have a great 2019.

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