From Pandemic to Positive
How the Dreaded P word shaped writer's groups for the hybrid future.
The year 2020 will forever be associated with one word. Pandemic. I challenge any creature to argue how the global pandemic didn't impact their life in a negative way. Decades of hind-sight will eventually allow for some rose-colored glasses - my children will remember 'how cool it was to have 3 weeks of spring break then finish school over zoom' and I will remember the lack of rush hour traffic and 'how nice it was not driving to sporting events all summer long.'
It took about a month before going stir crazy, and 'socialization-sick,' or whatever the your opposite of homesick would be. As an author and an introverted-extrovert, one could argue it was the perfect opportunity to finish up my long looming manuscript, AND give into a little guilty pleasure reading. Except it was the opposite. Years ago I found my writing tribe with DFW Writers' Workshop, and like any ungrateful twit, I didn't realize how much I needed it until my weekly creative recharge and restartuntil it was gone... with no foreseeable fix.
Thankfully, little workshop didn't let a whole lot of covid derail our mission...
We help writers of all genres and experience levels to produce and promote professionally published work. We do this by providing read-and-critique sessions, educational activities, ongoing author support, networking opportunities and a welcoming, inclusive community.
With the help of Zoom, and a few very tech savvy folks DFW Writers' Workshop retooled the weekly Wednesday read and critique to be fully online. Working two fold, members had the advantage of meeting 'face-to-face' getting the same quality feedback and interaction as before the pandemic wreaked havoc on existence, AS WELL, as providing a further reach for authors in search of a high quality writing workshop. We have members participate from all over Texas, the US, and as far as the UK. Our twice yearly, free, Writer's Bloc was also hosted all online there-by allowing for authors all over to benefit.
Starting next week, DFW Writers' Workshop will be a fully HYBRID read and critique experience. As a tribe, we know how important it is to have that social component to the very solo experience of writing - but now, thanks to a global pandemic - the tribe was forced to rethink, remodel, and revitalize our reach to include even more in our 'inclusive community.'
For now, let's hope the only P word for 2021 is Positive.