Writing is not a sport. There is no team. It’s pretty solitary.
Yet I would be nothing without my friends and my critique group.
Others might get together to run, do something active, we bring our papers around and read our stuff.
This might not sound thrilling to people with different Friday night plans, but it’s a bond. We meet and we critique.
We didn’t start off as a critique group when we met. First we were friends who came together to solitary write like in sprints. (I know again to those not in the game, it must sound like a super fun get together.) Then once we trusted each other enough, we changed course. Every week we now do the big girl writers thing. We read our pages. Then we get feedback.
Other times we hang out and do other things. My critique group are my female friends group. We can go shopping, see a movie, talk about our men, eat (we do this the most), or hit the beach. And now that the baby is due, I have to say these women knew before I told anyone else, including the boss at the day job.
Having female friends helps keep us steady. My hope once I have a baby is that I can keep going once a week to see everyone. It will be hard as two of the women have older children and two have none. I just think having female friends is something I had all my life in any life stage I was in. I was miserable in law school when I didn’t have my usual circle of good female friends I could count on, so I know what it’s like to spend years without someone who might at least listen to me. Friends can be more dependable than family. Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband and my family. But those friends are the ones who hold hands when something isn’t going right or I just need to release the drama. So hugs and I hope all my reader friends have those friends you can go to, sip wine with and just have fun again.