Happy birthday to the Insecure Writers Support Group – 12 years old today!
This is my Insecure Writers Support Group post, in which we share our successes and failures as writers, our insecurities, in fact. Anyone can join in, just sign up at the IWSG Sign-up page, write a blog post on the first Wednesday of the month, and go back to that sign up page to link with everyone else–or a goodly sample. Our host is Alex J Cavanaugh, and cohosting this month are:
- J Lenni Dorner https://jlennidorner.blogspot.com/
- Sonia Dogra https://soniadogra.com/
- Pat Garcia http://www.patgarciaandeverythingmustchange.com/
- Sarah – The Faux Fountain Pen http://thefauxfountainpen.blogspot.com/
- Meka James https://authormekajames.wordpress.com/
A birthday review of the last 12 years
When I read the question of the month, I realised that in 2011 I was preparing to publish the first Princelings book. Having had more rejections than I needed, knowing that this was a niche product, I jumped at the chance to move into self-publishing, and to focus on this new stuff… ebooks.
The IWSG celebrates 12 years today! When did you discover the IWSG, how do you connect, and how has it helped you?Question of the month IWSG Sept 23
I did discover IWSG fairly early on. I was already blogging, and I become familiar with this group of people who seemed to be everywhere on the internet, and aspired to be there too. The trouble was, I didn’t feel particularly insecure.
That comes later. The more you learn about writing, the more insecure you get! Well, that’s how it is for me, anyway.
Eventually I discovered how to make friends and buddies on the internet, so sometimes it feels all my friends are internet based, and most of them form the bulk of my readers – until recently, anyway. Personally, I never felt this was a problem, and it was a definite bonus during the pandemic.
First IWSG post
I didn’t actually start my regular IWSG posting until January 2018, though. I’m really not sure why. A little bit of wishful thinking? Acknowledging that I was not making it on my own, however many books I had out (probably 9 by then)? Lack of time? That last is an excuse, but once I had substituted the monthly IWSG post for whatever else I was thinking of blogging about, it all came much easier.
How has it helped me? I feel part of something big. I have contributed to some of the anthology calls, although not successfully. Whenever Alex needs me I co-host. I enjoy that, and I am better at getting around everyone to comment when I have a target I have to reach. Like the April A to Z Challenge, I find it difficult touring a lot of blogs and leaving comments about a subject I may not connect with. And when the blog systems are playing up, there’s a lot of typing my name, email, and URL to do.
As you probably know by now, I am having trouble with my hands and wrists (and neck), which ends up limiting the amount of time I can spend at the computer each day. I can schedule in the IWSG visits, but not the April ones. I schedule in my blog posts for my book reviews (since I’m still reading at a rate of knots, as I’m not writing). But that doesn’t leave a lot of keyboard-time each week for anything else. I have seven hours a week to do all my keyboard stuff. Emails, insurance documents, shopping, friends birthdays, hobbies, blog updates (including the art society blog, which I resurrected for them, and don’t feel able to let slide again)…. Usually I end up doing more hours than I should, and pay the price.
Where does the writing new fiction (long or short) go?
One thing the IWSG posts have always done for me is allowed me to think. Think about what I’m doing with my writing, how my books are doing, how I might do them better. How I might market them better. I have picked up so many helpful tips from the IWSG resources.
And that’s why I’m not saying I’m not writing any more. I might, if something grabs my imagination. But I have 22 titles on my stall at the craft fairs I go to. I have plans to continue doing them next year (bookings have just opened) but I will cut the numbers down as I find them exhausting. To put another book together involves a great deal more pain than it used to, and I’m not sure whether I need that. Do I need more books out? Last week I did an analysis of sales so far this year. I might talk about that next month.
And now, I’m going to leave it to you. What one thing has IWSG done for you? I’ll read the rest of your thoughts on the question when I visit your blog post!
Happy birthday, IWSG!