books · friends · On Writing

Writer and Story Part Ways…

Time to say goodbye

But not for always, just now

We’ll meet when it’s right

 

A woman that I met through a local writer group is leaving our group to pursue other writing ventures. Rather than focus on her engaging, frustrating fantasy novel, she’s going to put her dynamic, wide-open self into experience-based, smart nonfiction.

I wish her well, send her tons of positive energy, and also mourn my personal loss of an eager, receptive listener, a compassionate and intelligent commenter, and cheerleader/guide/idea sparkler.

It happens.

Many of the writers I’ve met (perhaps most, but survey results aren’t in yet) are multifaceted, wildly talented individuals profoundly committed to living full, dynamic, and creative lives. I’d expect many more shifts and changes in direction from an intelligent group like this one, relying upon their unique, true, make-believe story compass to guide them.

Changing direction is tough. It breaks all expectations, of yourself, your known and unknown readers, the business of your writer identity. For mega-successful writers, it can be a high-risk gamble that readers will follow or find you in your new place.

It can be done. Of course it can — it’s been done many times before by genius and yearning scribbler alike.

It’s just that a shift in direction can be a little disconcerting for those of us who enjoyed what you were doing — and who we got to be when we were with you. I will miss that.

Best of luck, brave woman — may your charm, passionate creativity, and boundless enthusiasm bring you new stories, joy, and success whatever road you take.

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