I've given up on this writing group I joined a couple of months ago. It did nothing for me, just people sitting around and locking themselves up in their own little world for a couple of hours. Plus, because of my tutoring schedule, I'd find myself available for just the last half-hour of each session.
I'm not saying it's bad people in a writing group to focus on the work. I mean, that's the primary point. What I am saying is that the silence is not golden.
I like getting to know other writers and shooting the breeze. It makes the work feel less like work. It's a chance to exchange tips, give encouragement, and occasionally play a round or two of professional one-upmanship.
Oh, fuck me! My grad school experience is really biting me in the ass now! Antioch's sense of community, you truly have infested my bone marrow and wormed your way into my brain meats! *Shakes fist at no one*
But yeah, I just couldn't stick with the group any longer. Some might say the silence has a serene church-like quality. I say, when's the last time I've gone to church? I still want to be in a writing group. I know I can't hide in my own corner forever. It'll drive me nuts. The long hours. The mounting doubt. I need a way to cope with that. Writing is a lonely career, but manageable with group therapy.
I'm hoping to find another group to join soon, or I might get in touch with some writer friends who live in the area and see if we can do a hangout every other week; order up some pizzas, bitch about how the first draft is kicking our asses, and then plow ahead regardless.