Yesterday was the official launch party for Legacy, the one-shot anthology I mentioned in this post a few weeks ago. It was a small affair held at our usual Saturday morning meeting place. The attendees consisted mostly of those who had contributed stories to the book and others from the Toronto Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers group that published it.

It’s been a little over a year now that I’ve been a part of the group, having joined my first meeting in the summer of 2021. That first meeting was terrifying to me, having no idea what these people would be like or how they’d receive my writing. I feared judgement and critique, awkwardness and exclusion.

My fears were unfounded, since I’m still attending events with them today. Just the same, I couldn’t help but be struck by how different things are for me a year later. Yesterday I spent two hours with my colleagues trading our copies of the book so we could sign our stories for each other, joking about having them when we all get famous. I chatted with the founder of the group about what a wonderful resource & support it’s been. I laughed and talked with my friends about the merits of happy endings vs “bad” ones. I talked with people I’d never met about how fun participating in the anthology was and how much we enjoyed each other’s stories.

The best thing about it was how genuinely happy and supportive everyone there is. We’re all delighted for the other members when they get something published. We celebrate when they finish something, or break through a roadblock in their latest work. We eagerly anticipate the next chapter in a story they’ve been sharing in the meetings. We offer advice and resources when someone doesn’t know the next step in the process.

Even writing the story for the anthology was a community effort. Writing has always been something I do in solitude, but with this group I spent seven hours as part of a larger group where we all worked on our anthology stories together. The writing still happened between me and my laptop, but in mid-sprint rests we could share and discuss, and when first drafts were finished we could trade and help edit each other’s work. It was such a unique and glorious thing to write with other people.

In the years I’ve lived in Toronto, I’ve joined several communities for my interests, and those communities have enriched my life in so many ways. My writing group is definitely not the least of these, and I feel so incredibly lucky to have found them so easily when I went looking for a writing group. I never used to think of writing as anything but a solitary activity, but I’ve been pleased to find that I’m wrong about that. There is such value in seeking out these connections and opening yourself up to share and to receive.

Leave A Comment

Recommended Posts

Celebrating Success

I had the great joy and privilege today to attend the book launch for Don Miasek’s Pale Grey Dot from Bakka-Phoenix Books. Don is a fantastic writer and friend from the Toronto Sci-Fi and Fantasy Writers group, and Pale Grey Dot is […]