Drink (and Write) With Me

Read on to see what I mean.

It’s Friday, and no I haven’t written here since Tuesday. I’m well aware of that.

Last night, along with the other things I’m working on, I decided to spend some time focusing on the writing. Specifically, the plan was to learn some more writing techniques by watching a couple of writing webinars.

I knew there would be a sales pitch at the end. But I also knew that I would sign off before that hit. Sometimes, the free information is helpful.

So, when this “expert” started bragging about how he saved eight hours a week that he could devote to writing time, I sat up to pay attention (and stopped browsing through the other eleventy-three open tabs).

Then I actually heard his first two methods for saving time.

He and his wife have gotten rid of anything that won’t go in the dishwasher, basically meaning they wash nothing by hand.

So much for the good china or the delicate wine glasses.

His next point was that they decided to consolidate laundry.

That’s where I stopped and realized I would save more writing time by avoiding the self-proclaimed experts.

The second was a little better, maybe even helpful in terms of focusing ideas for writing projects. In the end, I didn’t buy that program either.

Look, I know I still have a lot to learn. I know there are real experts out there who can teach me.

For one thing, my grammar skills could use some improvement. Not to mention my proofreading. Thankfully, my wife reads my blog, and theater friends read my promotional materials.

Everyone needs an editor.

What I’ve realized is that I need to stop wasting my time seeking the easy way to write.

There is no easy way. I’ve known this. I’ve written about this. Then I see a pitch and think “maybe I should try that.”

I find a similar thing with art and painting. I’ve picked up the brushes and gone back to the canvas in the last couple of years. I do okay work. I’m no great painter. But it annoys me when I search through Pinterest and see all of these posts about “easy painting ideas.”

What’s the fun learning a quick and easy way to produce a mediocre painting? Hire me, I can do that for you at a reduced cost.

Don’t get me wrong, if you enjoy painting, if you enjoy those wine and art nights, by all means, keep enjoying. Just don’t do it because it’s “easy.”

I digress.

I don’t need an expert seminar to make me a successful writer. I need to park my behind in the chair and just keep writing.

Also, unfollow people on Facebook and Twitter. After this week, I did a lot of that.

Again, I digress.

Two weeks in to figuring this all out, granted, it’s really been a few years, I’m still struggling to put all of the pieces together.

One of the writing lists I subscribe to had a post yesterday about why writers need to join a writing group.

This coincides with our seeing They Shall Not Grow Old on Monday night, after which the son asked “I wonder if we saw Tolkien.” And, as I mentioned, I finished watching The Movies over the weekend.

So, I thought about joining a writing group.

There are writing groups here in the city. I’ve thought about joining. I’m actually a member of the Richmond Playwright’s Forum. And I had the privilege of being a part of one session of The Mighty Pen Project.

But, I’m looking for something less formal. More loosely organized. A group of writers who can gather at a coffee shop or a bar to discuss what we’re working on and perhaps the important topics of the day.

Then it occurred to me.

I need the Inklings.

Please don’t make me explain who I’m talking about.

Okay, short version,

Between the early 1930s and the late 1940s, the Inklings were a literary discussion group associated with the University of Oxford. Among the members C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and Christopher Tolkien. The group was informal and loosely organized. They frequently met together in a pub.

Think about it. I would not have to have my evening cups alone. Granted, as an introvert that’s not such a bad thing.

I guess what I’m saying is that I’m ready to hit the coffee and beer circuit. I have to figure out how this works, and who this works with.

I’m not sure how this will work, or if it will work. Or if, perhaps, it’s a distraction from getting real writing done.

Are you a Richmond area writer looking for the same thing? Hit me up in the comments.

In other words, drink with me…




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