I wrote for years, but I never felt like a writer until I started reaching out to other writers and forming friendships with them. Not that you can’t be a writer all by yourself. I’m sure it’s possible, and that such writers exist, but they must be a rare breed.
I’ve written on the subject of community before, as have other bloggers here at the Fictorian Era, but I’ve been giving a lot of thought recently to this foundational concept. It truly is foundational, because I am nowhere without the support, encouragement, and accountability of the people around me.
Perhaps the matter of community speaks to me because my tendency is so strongly toward isolation. I’m not wildly social. I’m usually quite content to spend an evening in, with a good book and roaring fireplace for company. Hell, I don’t need the fireplace, but it sure helps when you live in the cold, dark reaches of the Canadian prairie. So when it comes to finding meaning all on my own… well, I’m practically an expert.
Two and a half years ago, I attended a conference for writers and found myself surrounded by friends with similar ambitions, dreams, and talents. I wouldn’t be writing this blog, or even my current work in progress, if it wasn’t for this feisty band of fellow travellers. Attending that conference required me to take a huge step outside my comfort zone, and most of the steps I’ve taken since have expanded that invisible bubble of succour and security even further. Expansion is constantly on the horizon, because I’m no longer standing still in my writing career; the figurative car I’m driving is a bit of a fixer-up, and the mileage varies (a lot), but the engine runs.
Here at the Fictorian Era, we are a community, and we’re growing all the time. Most of us started unpublished, though this has begun to change. Some of us have found publishers. Others have self-published. All of us are active in our careers, navigating the uncertain waters of the business, and using each other to make tough decisions, keep ourselves accountable, draw inspiration, and build experience. It’s been a gathering place, and it’s kept me on track more times than I can count.
Over the next few months, this blog is going to move forward with more vigor and determination than ever before. We’re pulling together to bring the best, most relevant content on the internet for writers, by writers, and in the process focusing that content more sharply on the topics that matter most to people like us—the craft of writing, the discipline of writing, and the business of writing. We’re combining a myriad of different perspectives and experiences, from the unpublished aspiring novelist to the New York Times bestseller.
If you’re a writer like us, a Fictorian at heart, at any level of skill or accomplishment, we invite you to gather here. Perhaps your writerly engine needs a bit of servicing, a bit of automotive TLC to get roadworthy again. Well, join us. This blog is for you.