Every now and then, I get asked to run a writers’ group in whatever community I’m currently working in.
This is one of the most intimidating challenges for a stranger in town, because each group is its own unique beast. Some people go to these things because they’re working on their magnum opus and are seeking feedback; others want exercises to stimulate their creativity; still others want to write in silent company; and some will be simply be there for the social contact.
On a couple of occasions, I’ve found myself leading a three-hour group with participants ranging in age from 14 to 65, and trying to solve this riddle:
What do you do with the buggers for that long?
It’s like Newton standing on the shoulders of giants – I dig out something like Daniel Nester’s lovely writers’ course idea ‘The Worst Song I Ever Loved.’