Image by Anthony Scanlon from Pixabay
One early morning last week, I stepped out onto our deck into the quiet country air. As I walked around the corner of the house, the quiet was eclipsed by a chorus of coyotes from across the lake. Just before I turned back to go inside, a cock began crowing, joining forces with the coyote community. Maybe he thought he was a crowd-pleasing crooner, but my imagination, which is seven years old at the best of times, concluded he might be seeking connection... aww he needs a chum.
Maybe it's lonely being a rooster.
Sometimes it's lonely being a writer, even for this highly introverted one. We need connection with other writers (as well as publishers, editors, and agents), not only to make our work better, but to confirm again and again that this craft that calls to us is indeed worth our time and pursuit. That our readers are out there, awaiting our content.
Connection for writers takes cultivation, and courageous cultivation at that, especially for introverts. It's hard to put oneself out there. All kinds of thoughts go through one's head - What makes me think I even deserve to be here? Can I even call myself a writer? - to name only a couple.
The first time I ever met with a writers' group, I abashedly told them, yes I've written some children's stories. My friends and family like them, but they are very kind. I expected, I suppose, to have these seasoned writers blast me with a cutting and condemning critique. Only, they didn't. And I blossomed from my cocoon.
Since then, I've been involved in writing conferences and contests. I started a writing cohort, inviting other writers into my home. Each of these acts required continuing courage on my part in order to cultivate the crucial connections to further my work. In the end, it was enjoyable and gratifying. So worth it. Like-minded individuals encourage us and spur us on.
Which brings me to a cautionary caveat: be sure to find like-minded people to encourage you on your way. I would calculate that a cock consorting with coyote choirs could be considerably calamitous for the chicken.
There's a fine line between constructive critique and condemning criticism. So, find a congenial community (like InScribe!), or at least a compatible writing buddy. The connection will make all the difference.
Image by svklimkin from Pixabay
P.S. If you concluded that I challenged myself to use as many c-words as possible, you'd be correct. Extra credit for you! (And a lot of chuckles for me.)
Joy is currently carousing with kids of her kids, but normally resides in beautiful lake country with the Cowboy and Chara, and a cat named Rhubarb. Find more of her Joy-infused writing at Scraps of Joy.
Thank you, dear Joy, for this fun to read post. Oh my, these words of yours are so true: "There's a fine line between constructive critique and condemning criticism."ReplyDelete
The hardest thing I find about the writing life is putting myself out there. Courage is critical. There's no risk in keeping to oneself, but nor is there reward.
I'm right there with you about the hardest thing being to put yourself out there. But so rewarding in the end. :)Delete
Thanks for connecting with this charming and cheerful creation on courage. I am sure the rooster becomes the lead singer of the band with the coyotes as back up singers. What a wonderful uplifting post. I am encouraged to try to put fear and trepidation aside and take a step. Gulp.ReplyDelete
I love your creative comment, Sharon. Thank you for carrying on the c-word challenge. :) And my seven-year-old imagination thanks you for the image of the coyotes as backup singers.Delete
Joy, I admit loving your seven-year-old imagination. It took us on a charming trail of 'c' words, concluding with that crucial warning to be careful about one's chums regardless if one is a chicken...or an aspiring writer. Thanks for the playful handling of this important reminder.ReplyDelete
I appreciate your lovely comment. Thank you, Brenda. :)Delete
My smile is very wide right now! I LOVE the ongoing alliteration in this piece while you still manage to stay on the topic of connection. (Very skillfully, I might add!) What a great start to my day! Thank you!ReplyDelete
Your comment is so encouraging. Thanks, Tracy!Delete
Joy, your post is a humorous exercise in alliteration, as well as being full of empathy, encouragement and wisdom for writers who are introverts. Just for fun, I counted all the c-words you used, including the title and PS. I came up with 66. Am I right? ;)ReplyDelete
Valerie, I took the time to write down every 'c' word I used as I was writing the post because I was curious too. Not including the bio or the title, I had 69. :) Thanks for taking the time to count! I wondered if anyone would.Delete
The hardest thing I have ever done was submitting my first manuscript for publication. Even though I had lots of encouragement to do so, I didn’t think my stories were worthy of being published. Even now, I still wonder …ReplyDelete
Nancy, bravo on your courage! Keep submitting. I wonder if we ever get over the feeling of not being good enough ...Delete
Joy, your crafty concoction of "c" words caused me to want to croon with the cock and create a comforting chorus with the coyote choir. Congratulations on such a cool composition.ReplyDelete
A+++++ for your triple C title and opening paragraph.ReplyDelete
So true that we need connection. We need it for accountability too … does that count as a C word? 😉ReplyDelete
What a clever collection of c-words, Joy. A fun and pertinent read. One might say, "Crackerjack!"ReplyDelete
Yes, I agree about the consorting with coyotes would not end well for the rooster lol. Enjoyed this post.ReplyDelete
Excellent post with all your creativity with C words, Joy! And it's so important to have people in your circle who confirm and encourage your abilities and efforts.ReplyDelete