I promised a post or two ago that I would share with you strategies to start a writers group if you could not find one locally. It’s a problem I faced in 2013 when I was living in the small town of Elko, Nevada.
Call on Friends
Starting a writer’s group when you don’t know if anyone else will join is a scary prospect. You’re putting yourself out there and you don’t know if there will be a response. If you have even one other friend you know who enjoys writing, ask them to join you in the project. It will make moving forward easier.
Find a Place
If your place isn’t exactly something you’re comfortable bringing people to, don’t let that stop you. Finding a place is easier than you think. The local library might be willing to help you, and if not you can almost certainly find a local bookstore that will.
Let People Know About It
Make flyers and mini posters for the bookstore or the library to hang in their windows. Write a press release and submit it to the local paper. Tell people about it. Post about it in Facebook.
Get the email addresses, names, and phone numbers of the people who attend. Not only will this help you in your efforts to grow your group but it will allow you to let them know about meeting changes and updates.
Focus on Serving Them
The writers who come to your group come because they need help. You’ve put yourself in a leadership position by opening up the doors of service. So, be sure that when they get there, you make them at home and you focus on doing what you can to help them achieve their goals.
The better you serve them, the faster the group will grow and the steadier its membership will be. Yes, this means a lot of unpaid work, but believe me when I tell you that for every blessing you give out to them you will receive three in return. Every ounce of work will prove worth it in the long run.
Don’t Get Discouraged
When your group is slow to grow or you sometimes find yourself with only you and one other writer, don’t think you’ve failed. You haven’t. People get busy and sometimes they forget. Look at what you’ve been doing and see what you could do better.
Above all, persist. The lives you touch with your efforts will not forget you when it’s your turn to need support. It takes time to build something solid, but it’s worth the work involved.
I’m Here to Help
If you’re trying to start a writer’s group but you need help, contact me. I’ll be glad to help you locate resources and figure out how to build support for it.
Have you started a writers group and have tips to offer? Have you thought about starting one and have questions you’d like answered? Leave your feedback and I’ll be happy to respond.