When I first started the group I was intimidated by the number of writers there. The meeting was capped at an attendance of thirty and some of us decided to crash it despite the limit being full… We split up into groups based on genre interest, and Writers in Training started as a group of six. I thought of the thousands of people signed onto Nanowrimo, and saw blogs from many unpublished, self-published and traditionally published authors, and all the people who told me they wanted to write stuff or had started a novel when they heard I was part of a writing group.
Of the original thirty, there are very few of the original members still standing. Between schedule changes at work, increasing demands on their time from family or school or jobs, difficulty handling criticism, difficulty waking up on a Saturday morning, losing faith in themselves, feeling like their writing is too personal to share, or deciding they loved their writing too much to want to change a word, personality conflicts, quitting because their friend quit and they no longer had a ride, quitting because their significant other quit and they no longer felt the need to come when it wasn’t a bonding experience with their sweetie, quitting due to depression, quitting because someone took a highly symbolic piece at face value… whatever the reason, we’ve battled a constant war against attrition of the writers groups.
I no longer feel as disheartened by the sheer volume of people who want to be writers. Many people who want to write a novel won’t end up doing it. If they do it, they won’t end up revising it. If they do that, they won’t end up trying to publish it. If they make it that far, many of them will get disheartened after rejection from publishers or poor sales of self-published books. Writing is a challenge to perseverance and I am proud of how far I have come.