Last night I drove to Denver to meet up with a group of scifi and fantasy writers. In the past, the several attempts I’ve made to find a group of writers have ended somewhat prematurely. There is ultimately one reason for this, I found that those groups had little to no value for me as a writer.
However, last night the meeting left me feeling a lot more productive and even a little inspired despite the hour and twenty minute drive through rush hour traffic. No one asked me for money. No one promised to formulaically make me a better writer or a published writer. In fact, the equation of the group dynamic appears to be one of “raise all boats.”
The meeting last night was centrally focused on protagonists. Lots of opinions to mull over, but ultimately it was the discussion that kept me up thinking most of the night. Looking for ways to make my protagonists more compelling and culturally relevant. Finding ways to instantiate both internal and external conflicts. Thinking of tools and responses these strangers will have to employ to deal with the vast array of unfortunate and sometimes tragic circumstances I’m going to challenge them with.
Another item of interest. I see in this group the potential to work together on a joint world project, similar to the group exercises that happened prior to the publication of the first and second META-tropolis collections. Bringing a lot of good writers together to produce something unique individually but collectively focused on a shared theme.
So, some good stuff. Ultimately, I can say that it was worth the time and the money just to spend some time talking word-smithing with other word smiths. I’m not certain I can afford a weekly pilgrimage down to Denver, but I’m going to make this happen.