by Sandra Walker
Reading magazine interviews, an autobiography, or book on the writing life, an author's solitude is revealed. One lone writer with voluntary confinement savoring minutes of silent concentration while oblivious to time and mundane concerns. Out of this surrounded silence comes creative essence. The subconscious surfaces in quiet stillness and this beneficial state provides an expressway to productive work, for where focus goes, energy flows.
Yes, we writers need the discipline to settle into solitude, allowing interior time to percolate through thoughts. However, even when existing alone I find I'm engaged with character relationships, with the reader's perception, with an editor's view.
The poem, No Man is an Island, by John Donne (1624) remains a guide for writers. No man is an island, Entire of itself, Every man is a piece of the continent, A part of the main.
So venture from an island into the active flow of the writers' community to enjoy involvement in becoming an established writer. The discipline to select classes, attend library programs, spend social time with authors, schedule conference days from the many sources available provides breadth to the writing life. The Northwest is abundantly rich with literary opportunities. Our EPIC Wall newsletter for Writers and Literary Lovers regularly lists the range of events to give timely information.
Anne Lamott's bestseller, Bird by Bird, in Part Three "Help Along the Way" states, "Being a writer guarantees that you will spend too much time alone and your mind will begin to warp. You may begin showing signs of schizophrenia..." And in characteristic Lamott fashion, she creates a very funny, long paragraph about imaginary fears that rise in an author's lonely, isolated mind.
EPIC erases the "warp" and stops the "schizophrenia." From our private nook we can be refreshed, revitalized by the fellowship in EPIC. Writing is serious business. But, our story needs contrasts to eliminate a monotone style, which occurs when we feel drained and dull. To lighten the serious side, balance individual time with the benefits of lively social interactions, instructive classes, and supportive writing groups.
EPIC offers writing groups in a range of literary interests: poetry, fiction, nonfiction, memoir, historical fiction, travel writing. We need knowledgeable partners who share constructive help, and we can share experiences plus creativity with fellow writers. Team members from your group will become the base for a book launch and book signing.
Balance the moments of peaceful solitude and solo performance with an active interaction arising from a chorus of authors. Belong to EPIC, an educational, social, and inspirational association for all writers.
Come communicate with our expressive community in order to balance writing alone with being involved. Please join our expanding EPIC group. Hope to see you soon.
We have such a variety of writers in our organization that we thought it would be fun, exciting and enlightening to have multiple blog post authors.
We will be sharing all sorts of writing-related topics!