2014/10 — Gary McLouth

PRESIDENT’S LETTER # THREE from Gary McLouth to the GCWA membership.
October 15, 2014
Are you anxious about participating in the critique groups this coming Saturday? I suspect we all are but for different reasons. Some of us who consider ourselves novices face the fear of exposing our inadequacies to others. Some of us are unaccustomed to showing our work to others who might be strangers. And, others of us can’t wait to have our brilliant work praised by other writers who may know how difficult it is to be brilliant. I’d guess that there’s some of each feeling in everyone, and that we will find ways to mask those feelings. If you show up for the workshop, you’ll see what happens with other writers, and you’ll get insight into your writer-self, too.

It might help us to slip into our writer-selves during workshops. After all, taking direct criticism is not pleasant or even tolerable for some of us. If my writing is taking a hit, am I taking a hit? Well, that depends on whether it’s my writing or me that’s not “quite right for us at this time.” It’s really hard to get the separation established between the work and the self, but it’s got to be done, and we can do it with practice. That’s what a workshop can do, give us practice at giving and taking, provide practice at limning the boundaries between “it,” “them,” and “you.”

As most of you know, we will be meeting in a new venue in November with plans to sign a contract for 2015. Details about the location and mission of the UUCFM appear on the GCWA website, and I encourage you to peruse them.

Why move? For one reason, the executive board has done its duty to further the stability of the organization, and that means a consistent and dependable meeting place. Another reason has to do with securing a facility that offers the potential for expanded internal programming and higher community awareness. In November, we will have the opportunity to experience the new environment. I encourage you to send your reactions and responses to Judy Loose at the GCWA website.

So, we have a couple of challenging monthly meetings ahead of us. I’m anxious to see what happens.

Gary McLouth, President GCWA

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