Monday, September 29, 2008

Guest blog post from a very funny writer

I want to share a post from on of my favorite blogs, The Life of Wryly, but only after the caveat that all comments about me are to be ignored. I'm terribly flattered, but I think Mrs. Wryly got a bit carried away. That said, here are her thoughts about our great writers' group.

"It’s about time that I write about my writer’s group. Really, that’s being a little possessive, as it’s actually “our” writer’s group. We are the writers from Bobbi’s “How to Write a Non-Fiction Book” class, which was offered through our community college system in the spring semester this year.

"Initially reading the class description in the non-credit course catalog, I was so excited! I couldn’t wait until the day that registration opened so I could call and recite my credit card number over the phone to secure my spot in the class. One of the requirements was that enrollees had to have a book concept. No problem; I would bluff my way through that. Anything to feel like a writer, to be with other writers, to have a reason to write, even to say the word “write.” It all felt so right.

"At the first class we met our instructor, Bobbi, a petite dynamo of a writer who is extremely talented and well-respected in her craft. She claims to be 70 years of age, but if that’s true, then 70 is the new 50, which conveniently makes her my age. Bobbi is very supportive and nurturing of fledgling writers. She didn’t even laugh (in front of the class) when I fumbled for a book concept and came up with “Diet of 49,” which was going to be a journal of my weight loss success from puffing and panting on the treadmill, and pushing away desserts toward my 50th birthday.

"The other writers (love that word!) had such important things to write about, like bi-polarism, estuaries, the circle of life, being a Holocaust survivor, how to research your home’s history, helping others through your life’s mistakes, faith, and more. And there was my fluffy, vain topic in the middle of all that: “Uhh, I want to write about working toward my goal of losing 13 pounds before my 50th birthday.” Something just didn’t seem right about that.

"My fellow writers’ material could be in literary magazines; mine would be more appropriate for a supermarket tabloid. “Menopausal Woman Born with Three Appetites Loses Weight the Old-Fashioned Way: Diet & Exercise.” YAWN!!!

"From Bobbi’s class, we writers learned how much work is involved to organize a book, to write a book proposal, to potentially market a book, and to make scores of decisions regarding how the book will ultimately be produced. We also learned how exasperated she could get at our procrastinations. Bobbi expects books from all of us!!! To this day!!! What are you waiting for? Today could be the first day of your life as a published writer! Do you know how incredible that would feel???

"Bobbi’s next book will be 12,124 Excuses Not to Write: Some Fiction, Some Non, as told to her by her Non-Fiction Book Writers’ class.

"When the course was over, all books were still in process. Super-Kind Techno Jan, who had already set us up on the Internet for communications, insisted that we meet for support and critique, seconded by All-Around-Woman-of-the-Millennium Lynn, who offered her centrally located home. Always-Did-Her-Homework Kim the Wit, Lynn’s Awesome Daughter Mary with the Interesting Life and Job, and I rounded out the forum, along with No-Excuses Spunky Bobbi. There were others in the class and some have made guest appearances, and some we haven’t seen. We speak often of our former fellow writers nostalgically.

"We refused to let go of the class because it might push us back into the abyss of non-writing. That’s not acceptable. There are books to be written. Today! What are we waiting for?

"My writer’s group is like a new warm ‘n’ fuzzy pashmina cuddled around my neck, encircling it with encouragement, and resting partially on my back to keep the words flowing.

"I love each writer in my writer’s group, and I love the word: writer."