Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I went to my writing group tonight. We're three to six women, depending on who's in town or in the country on the 1st or 3rd Tuesday of the month. We met in a writing class four years ago or so. We're all at least 50; I think I'm the oldest, but not by much.

We all sometimes feel remorseful that we don't write as much or as often as we "oughtta". Sometimes we write during our group time. We support each other's efforts, sporadic or otherwise.

In the past few months we've been thinking about doing some collaborative writing. If, say, the assignment is 300 to 500 words that include the words "storage unit," we all come to the gathering with our work and read it aloud. Everyone's is surprisingly different, reflecting our selves and our histories. Pulled together into a single piece, we say something about ourselves as a bonded group of women.

Our current assignment is an abecedarium, where each of us has taken five letters of the alphabet and committed to write 200 to 300 words on a state of mind - a noun - that begins with one of our assigned letters. One of my letters is V. I'm considering vitality, vigor and valuable as possibilities for the write. The last sentence of my V creation must contain the word chosen by the woman who's got the U. We will let each other know by next Sunday evening what words we've chosen, so the transition sentences will work out.

I expect our collaborative effort will speak, again, to who we are as women and as a group. Even though we all expect it to happen, we'll be surprised anyway. Each of us has pieces of the whole thing, but only all of us together have the entirety. And we won't know what it is until we're there!

That's kind of how this year of transition is for me, I think. I have ideas, and some pieces, but the whole thing won't be there until it's there.

I am totally grateful to these women who have become my friends. The writing is almost - but not entirely - an incidental.

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