Wednesday, June 04, 2014


Monday will be my 700th post on this blog. Be sure to return then to help with my celebration and sign up for giveaways!

Each of us has work-related stresses. Although I love writing, occasionally I need to refill my well. What do I do? I meet with my three amazing critique partners: Geri Foster, Carra Copelin, and Brenda Daniels.

Geri Foster
We do more than critique each other’s work. We make suggestions, talk about marketing, discuss the new changes in social media, and laugh a lot. Yes, meeting with these women is group therapy.

Brenda Daniels
Other writers understand that hearing voices in one’s head is not necessarily a sign of madness. Okay, maybe a little madness, but we are allowed in public. And we only harm people in our books. So far.

Maybe you don’t write, but you do something that requires your concentration and sometimes causes you stress. So what do you do? I have a suggestion—meet with friends.

Psychologists say that the camaraderie and laughter of meeting with other like-minded individuals creates the same endorphins that runners experience in a “runner’s high.” What’s better, those endorphins from getting together with others hang around for up to three days. Yep. Goofing off with friends is beneficial to your mental health!

Carra Copelin
And there’s no major plan required. Call a friend and go to lunch or dinner. Join a book club, Bible study, bridge or bunco group—whatever appeals to you. Even if you enjoy the solitary pursuits of knitting, crochet, quilting, scrapbooking, gardening and so forth, join a group centered around those activities.

Even if—as I do—you enjoy time alone, occasionally meeting with others to exchange ideas boosts your morale and broadens your outlook. Not all of us are extroverts, but we must force ourselves to get up and get out of our routine. For me, this means venturing out of the comfort of my pink writing cave. But—my psyche protests—I love it here. So, I have to get tough with myself and make myself leave the security of the place where I’m most comfortable.

Today is critique day. I submitted my pages earlier in the week and have read and commented on my critique partners’ submissions. They’re good writers, by the way. Even the one who’s not yet published has great story ideas. I’ve printed out their pages and have them in my handy tote bag ready to walk out the door.

We meet at a local restaurant. The staff there know we like to sit in the front corner and that we’ll be there a while, but we tip well to make up for tying up the table. When I leave the restaurant, I’ll be recharged and ready to jump back into my writing.

What do you do to recharge?   

Thanks for stopping by!


Rain Trueax said...

I don't have nearby friends who write; so when I discuss writing with a friend, it has to be an online discussion somewhere. Here being outside, sitting in the sun, watching the birds and bees or going for a little walk in nature. That helps me recharge. A good movie at night can do it too if it's the right sort.

Jacquie Rogers said...

I do love brainstorming with my friends. It's always good to be around people who have a screw loose, and who share a penchant for making things up. Outrageous things. :)

BrendaC said...

Always a pleasure to plot mayhem and dastardly deeds with you. You've helped me immensely.

BrendaC said...

Always a pleasure to plot mayhem and dastardly deeds with you. You've helped me immensely.