Friday, July 9, 2010

The First Rule of Write Club...

"By the way, that sounded like Solitaire, but it’s not." That's what she said. No really. That's what my friend said to me the other night as we sat down, laptops in laps, to work on our respective writing projects. We're the most frequent attendees of Write Club, a place where a few writer friends and I get together, eat take-out, gossip and then actually get some writing done for an hour or two. It's not one of those groups where the members hem and haw their way through those little writing exercises that let my kind procrastinate even more than we're already prone to. No sir! Real, honest to goodness writing actually takes place in my club.

Write Club has been, perhaps, the most important new element in my writing life these past few years, and I'm grateful I have friends who take it seriously. The Club holds me accountable -- it makes me feel like an asshole if I haven't been writing on my own time, and it makes me feel like an asshole especial if I don't use my WC time for writing.

Which is where that above quote comes in. It's true, for all I know, my friend could have been playing Solitaire. Typing away in an isolated little corner by the speaker in my living room, Japanese food containers strewn around us -- both of us could have been up to anything at all but writing, I suppose. But we almost always write. Because we almost always love it.

Anyhow, before I started wrestling with some TV writing, here's what I managed to create for my poor, nearly forgotten second novel at this WC meeting:

My downstairs neighbour has a poodle. It's white and bigger than I always expect because I always think small when I think poodle. It doesn't really ever bark or chase cars or anything. It's got much more self control than I do. It's quite skinny as well which substantiates my theory about self control. I didn't think dogs could do that sort of thing, stop themselves when they've had enough, or even know what enough was. Sometimes even I forget so I try to spend as much time with the poodle as I can. This is easy because my upstairs neighbour lets him out the front door and leaves him in the yard for hours sometimes, even in the winter. It sounds cruel but it's not. If you saw my downstairs neighbour you would understand. She's not built for waiting so who's fault is that? It's not the poodle's so I frequently let him through my patio door for leftovers. Some dry toast or spaghetti or the smallest bit of butter because he just wants a taste.

So if you haven't your own Write Club, I highly recommend forming one. Not because I think this bit of writing is so great, but because it likely wouldn't exist at all without it.

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