In the last three years that I’ve been a member of Kansas Writers Inc, I’ve been terrible about attending. It was always easy to let other things get in the way. And I’ve struggled a lot with taking my writing seriously, because it’s fun and I enjoy it and that makes it feel so much not like work. So when my husband wanted me to do something else, or I was tired from whatever, it was easy to skip the meeting. But this year is different. I set up an office for myself. I’m getting things done (though sometimes slowly). I’m putting my writing higher up on the priority list. And it’s paying off.
In January, KWI does an editing meeting. We submit 10 pages and then we’re partnered up to give critiques. I have never participated in this meeting before, but I made it this year. And it was a wonderful experience. Since I’m currently working on revisions, it was easy to find 10 pages to send. And when I got my critique, it made me feel so great.
I’m not going to say that nothing was marked up in my pages. That is completely untrue. But the things that were marked up were things that had bothered me a little, or that I worried about. And some of the things that my critique partner liked, were things that were new from my revisions that I wasn’t completely sure I’d done right. So it helped me to gain a little bit of confidence in my own revisions, and it also helped with spots where I thought, “This isn’t right,” but I couldn’t figure out how to fix it.
And with a first meeting of the year experience like that, I think putting the meetings a little higher on the priority list won’t be very hard. Now, if only I can stop editing the first ten pages of my novel over and over, I might actually stand a chance of finishing the thing (and getting rid of all the snowy, wintery weather that I swear is because of my novel).