Tuesday, July 8, 2014

My First Google Hangout with my TWT-Inspired Writing Group

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Summer offers so much more time and such a different pace of life in my world. We are incredibly lucky to have inherited a house near the ocean and we spend our days beaching, boating, clamming, fishing, gaming, cooking... rarely paying attention to time or schedules unless they involve tides.

That being said, 8:30 on Sunday night anchored me, as that was the time for my first google hangout with the new writing community that emerged from a series of tweets on a Two Writing Teachers twitterchat a few weeks ago. Thanks to the vision, knowledge, and perseverance of several people, I met up, via my computer and google, with Stacey, Catherine, and Julie, and we have officially established a writing group.

This writing group has already inspired my writing life, and I feel more serious as a writer than I have ever felt. I have woken up in the morning with a strong sense of purpose and a list of writing tasks, for both my own work and the work of others, since we are all sharing pieces via google docs. The chapter book that I have written sporadically and episodically over the last four years is beginning to congeal, as I said, OUT LOUD, that I am going to complete a chapter each day, with my goal being to complete the draft, beginning to end by the end of summer vacation. Saying this to people in a video chat emboldened me to share my writing goals and vision with the people in my home. I realize that now I'm announcing it to a whole additional group of people.

What strikes me is how when we take the work that we are doing seriously, others take it seriously as well, and we move away from the recreational puttering, a term that has most aptly described my writing life until now. My family and friends now know that a chunk of my day needs to include not only the beach, but also time to write a chapter, and they provide and protect my time.

Happy slicing!


  1. Sounds wonderful, Melanie. I hope your group continues to enjoy and support. Happy writing!

  2. Melanie, I feel the same way. For so long I have been deliberate in addressing my students, and now colleagues, as readers and writers....but with the encouragement of this group, and the challenge of The Slice, I am beginning to try on that hat for myself: Writer. As Peter Johnston reminded us, words are so powerful. Sometimes, we need to remember that for our own internal words as well. You have given me so many rich and powerful things to think about in such a short amount of time.

  3. Wow, Melanie this is amazing and exciting. Part of me thinks that we teachers all nurture others well, so the idea of teachers nurturing each other is just perfect. Can't wait to see what you're working on! I'm already signing up to buy your work!

  4. I couldn't agree with you more! My TWT writing critique group is just getting started, but like you, I am excited for where it will take me as a writer. Keep at that chapter book. You can do it!!

    Sweet Writing Life
    Mrs. Laffin's Laughings

  5. That's wonderful - a group of writers supporting each other is often the best motivation to keep at it.

  6. That is so nice! It is so wonderful how a group of supportive friends can work together to help each member to thrive. I admire the courage it took to say out loud to all these different people that you are working to get that draft done. I am still puttering around with it. Have a great week!

  7. My group is just getting off the ground but I'm looking forward to our first hangout! I think you are right - I believe it will give me a push and some inspiration to work hard and be motivated. I can't wait and I'm glad that you are feeling success with your group!

  8. How exciting, Melanie! You are writing a book!
    To have the support of your family, friends and writing group is wonderful!

  9. I am excited about the writing groups too. Having a group to support us along the way is so important. Good luck in reaching your goals and enjoy every minute.