I’ve been thinking ahead to summer, counting days in various categories: number of days left to teach, number of days total till I have to present my Kalamazoo paper, number of days between K’zoo and when I leave for 5 weeks teaching in our summer-abroad program in the UK, number of weekdays when I will be within walking distance of a major UK library. I still have to look up when classes start again in the fall, so I can work out number of days between my return and when I’ll begin teaching fall classes.
This all makes summer seem much too short, and it hasn’t even started yet. It feels particularly short because, in addition to the big trip, there are 3 more smaller excursions I want to fit in. Well, smaller, but at least 2 of them involve a plane ride, and the third is a full day’s driving if I don’t fly.
This is all to say that much as I have enjoyed hosting the writing group this spring—and I have, it’s been great fun—I think I should take a break during the summer. I’d love to be a part of someone else’s group, because I do have writing projects to work on (planning them is why I started counting days). But with so much travel, I think my internet access may be spotty at times, and weekends may be very full indeed.
Running a writing group doesn’t have to involve inspirational quotes every day. I did make more work for myself with that gimmick, though I enjoyed doing that, too. It really only needs one post a week, plus curating comments and cheering people on. I recommend making a list of names of participants and saving it, then fill in goals for each week as they get posted. Then you don’t have to go through a lot of comments to find the goals the next week. And having a format like the four-paragraph one I mandated also helps keep things organized; you don’t have to read through a long comment to try to figure out what the goal was.
The various groups over the past year have been so helpful. ADM and Notorious deserve a big round of applause for having the idea and running the first two iterations. Let’s keep it up! I’d be happy to come back in the fall, if there’s interest, but I think I’ll have logistical problems doing it in the summer.
So I’m calling for volunteers: who would like to run a summer writing group? Please leave a comment!