Writing Through Life – Community

9 Nov

For some reason, Virginia Woolf’s connection with the infamous Bloomsbury Set — and the creation of her independent publishing venture, Hogarth Press, always inspired me to no end. It’s not just that Woolf and many in the group dared to create what was then considered edgy work (although that’s pretty awesome), and it wasn’t just that she was publishing the innovative writing of others (including, surprisingly, Freud). It was that she and others in the group formed a community of creative types who supported and challenged one another as writers and artists.

Writing is an introverted business. To get the words on the page, we have to sit in a room, usually alone, usually for a good while, and we have to do this regularly. Writing works best when we ignore the world, when we close doors, pop in earplugs, say no even to those we love. At the same time, we need people who inspire and challenge us. We need folks who can help us see when the writing works, when the sentences fall flat and when the story falters. And sometimes we need people who can help us engage in life and (as Proust says) see our world with new eyes.

So I think a community of creative people is where it’s at. It’s not easy, of course, to form a Bloomsbury group. Despite all our 21st Century communication devices, it’s tough to find and gather a group of like-minded creatives together, and it’s tough to collect the time to read and comment, gather, and play with the work. I’ve got to believe, though, that the pursuit is worth the undertaking.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: