This evening I’m at a new writing group at The Bristol Folk House called The Steady Table.
The idea behind it is to give people the space and time just to write, be it poetry, short stories, or a J K Rowling style wizardy blockbuster. All you need is a steady table right? The trouble is, I’m so used to ‘making the most’ of every minute, of squeezing every bit of work time out of the day, that the idea of three whole hours just to write creatively is a bit daunting. I feel almost guilty, as though indulging in a passion for fiction is just that, an indulgence.
That’s the point of the group though isn’t it? Expressing your creativity should be a perfectly valid use of time, and we need to accept this, and not be afraid to embrace it. Tonight though, I’m easing myself in gently and writing this post instead. It sort of counts doesn’t it?
The group is great – a fascinating, diverse mix of people, including a man called John who eats pizza with a spoon* – and I’m sure that I’m going to enjoy the time out once I get over the fact that I’m allowed to write made up stories. Seriously – fiction – what’s that about? You’re allowed to tell actual lies!
I love the idea of going somewhere different, somewhere special to write. If you’re the type of person who can work on their own, there are of course loads of options available – forums, online groups and flexible distance learning creative writing courses – but I work from home all week. Coming out is a treat.
On my way over in the car I did think up an idea for a story, just in case they wouldn’t let me sit down without a synopsis, but I haven’t quite got around to writing any of it down yet. I have had a cup of tea and a very nice chocolate brownie though. It would seem there are some things I feel less guilty indulging in.
If you’d like to join me to do some scribbling on a Tuesday evening, follow The Steady Table on twitter.
*John eyes me curiously when I look up from my typing and ask if he spells his name with an ‘h’.