Writing IS a very solitary activity and you do need silence for that to dig what you have in that ink well. That is why you take your lap top and disappear into a cafe with head phone on, so that your toddler can not pull your skirt any more demanding your attention; or your mother can’t bother you nagging that your dirty shoes are still in the living room.
Then again there are times when the muse decides to break relationship with you and visit you no more. You stare at your blank page day after day and find thousands of excuses why you can not write. You feel ashamed to face the mirror that nags - Didn’t you promise to tell that story to the world?
That is when and why you need your writer friends. They can exactly understand your feeling. The friend stretches her hand to pull you up from that dark corner, stays with you while you read and give you feed back, constructive and honest ( so that you do not burst with ego), yet gentle ( enough, so that you do not wilt or dry like a dying plant).
You feel like you have experienced the birth of your friend’s child when your writer friend’s book comes out. That is what I want to share today. My friend Christina Tomerson , her real Polish name is Krystyna Mihuka is published recently. Krysia, a Polish Girl’s Stolen Childhood During World War II is a memoir of her experience of the World war Ii. The book received A Junior Library Guild Selection and a great review in Wall Street Journal.
I saw this book being created chapter by chapter, polished and dressed today.. My 87 year old friend doubted her talent every time she read to us, so humble she is but I was just waiting for this day. I am so proud for Krystyna.
Today in CWC (California Writers Club), our keynote speaker Meagan Ward talked about co operative writing, and how writer friends need to help each other. I did not know that there are places in San Francisco ( San Francisco Writers Grotto) and New York ( and couple of other places mentioned) where you can rent a space to write with other writers, sitting among other writers. Some are close doors, some open, like a library. It is fascinating ( though I don’t know if I’d use it)
The main point is writers do need writers as friends. No wonder Jack London felt it long ago, a hundred some years back and created this wonderful club- California Writers Club.