After about a year looking into creative writing in North Devon, I’ve discovered two interesting things. One: there are a lot of people writing, studying and publishing in North Devon. Two: they don’t seem to be much in contact with each other. I understand that writing, whether songwriting, poetry, fiction, memoir or whatever is a largely solitary occupation, but writers need readers. To get readers, we need to be improving our writing up to the level where we can publish. Whether that’s confident self-publishing, anthologies, magazines, websites or commercial publishing we then produce words for others to read and enjoy. So I’ve stuck my neck out and provided a hub, and promised to run it for two years.
I’ve also offered to run the group that I need. The best way to get better is to be open to constructive feedback, positive and negative, and I need feedback. I benefitted hugely from the experience shared from agents, editors, publishers, writers and critics. When one person goes to a talk, attends a literary festival or gets feedback from the industry, it can benefits us all. Belonging to a group improves all our chances of getting published.
Last year a local writer ran a little flash fiction project which grew like Topsy, and turned into a great project that culminated in a published anthology. A great experience for all concerned, and a publishing credit for a lot of local writers. There are a lot of good writers out there. They are generous and produce great work.
All we need is some writers to put their heads over the parapet. I’m happy to put a 50 word bio, contact details and links to work on a page (called Individuals) of any individual writers. Or I can create a page for a group, where you describe your group, its aims and activities. Just contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. So, let’s see what happens next!