As we close in on the end of the year, the Toronto Sci-Fi and Fantasy Writers group held their annual holiday party last night. This event was combined with a book launch for one of our members (you can find his project here), plus the book launch for Heretic, the 24-hour anthology I told you about in October. While I haven’t been attending many of the Saturday meetings lately, I’ve still been connecting with my friends there through other events and our online writing sprints, and couldn’t miss the party.

It was really lovely to see everyone and extra wonderful to see the support for each other’s projects. At one point, the group’s founder said something about how important this community is because writing can be such a solitary experience, and how great it is that the members of this group have each other’s support and encouragement. I’ve echoed the same sentiment in this blog multiple times, so of course that resonated with me.

A little later in the evening, I was speaking with one of my friends in the group and he mentioned my blog, saying he really enjoys it. He expressed that it’s helpful to see my process and how I work through my struggles, and he encouraged me to keep it up.

I was really touched by this and thanked him, though I don’t know that I really got across how much it meant to me. Because – like the group founder said – writing is a solitary experience. Every week I sit down and I write a blog entry, and I never really know if it’s doing anything. Unless someone comments or mentions it to me, I don’t know if it’s made any impact. Getting feedback from someone is exciting and very meaningful, because that’s why any of us are writing. We have something to say, and we’re always hoping that it finds the audience that needs and appreciates it. It’s impactful when we know that’s happened.

This is not me begging for comments. I’m going to keep writing even if no one reads it, because I want to and it’s helpful for me too. If people feel moved to say something about an entry, that’s lovely, but I never want that to happen out of any sense of obligation.

What I do want to do today is to say thank you. Thank you to the people in my writing group for their encouragement, feedback and support. Thank you to my friends and family that support me by reading, by asking me about my book progress and just by generally being the amazing people that surround me. Thank you to the people who read this blog, whether you comment on it or not. I’m just glad you’re out there, giving the words meaning. And, of course, thank you to the people who do comment, or who message me, or who tell me in person that something I’ve said here resonated with them. I’m a lucky girl, and I know it.

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