Dear Friends, Writers of Fictions Convenient and Eldritch

I’m starting a support group.

Here’s the format:

It’ll be a publication. Everything that appears in the publication will be the sort of forward-facing materials that novels/other-forms-of-creative-writing usually have. Cover letters, back-jacket blurbs, notes, pitches, blogs about your personal process, and similar. Those will all appear in the publication.

This will give us all practice writing all that drudgy, businessy, meta-writing that we need to get good at to game this publishing system. These “front-facing” materials will all be open for discussion.

Then at the bottoms of all these “front-facing” materials there will be an invitation:

Want to talk about the book?

To fellow writers to get in touch with you, if they’re interested in chatting with you about any of the novel, or work of fiction, that you have drafted. You’ll begin a dialogue. You’ll build a rapport. Then, if you decide you like them, then you’ll be able to exchange links to Unlisted Stories. On the Unlisted Stories, you’ll be able to have some critical dialogue about the draft.

Let’s be real for a second, as opposed to the imaginary I’ve been for most of my life: writing is a lonely endeavor. That’s both sad, and the way that we like it. If we could have friends who are useful and helpful and kindly and only need to see them sometimes, we’ll be happy.

Most of us could use some feedback from writers with a genuine interest in our success. So far, Medium hasn’t been the best place for exposure of our fictions, but it has been an amazing place to network with other writers. I don’t know about all youse guys, but I have a network of cunning writers through Medium now. It feels cool to know you all are out there. That said, I’ve been wanting to talk fiction and writing with you for a long time. I haven’t been able to figure a way to do it. This feels like it might be a good way.

I’ll tag a few you fiction writers I can think of jus’ now. I know I’ll be missing scads.

If this idea catches your eye, let me know. I’ll start the publication. I’ll add you as a writer. We’ll start things rolling.

How the initial stages will look:

The first things that will appear in the publication will be novel/screenplay/whatever sort of story summaries. All you writers will submit them, and then without discernment I’ll jus’ publish all of them.

You’ll put an invitation at the bottom of the summary — however you’d like to phrase it — to other writers.

I’ll phrase mine similar to this:

  • Want to help me with the novel? Drop me a note with your email address. We can talk for a bit. If I like you, and you still like me, maybes I’ll send you a draft. Maybes we can enter an “if I show you mine, you show me yours,” type situation. Maybes not. We don’t yet know.

Okay, it’s a work in progress. See what I’m doing, though.

Other submissions I’ll accept without any discernment (because it’s assumed they’re a work in progress):

  • Back-jacket blurbs
  • Outlines
  • Sluglines
  • Title explanations
  • Character summaries
  • Story-related free-writes
  • Basically anything DIRECTLY RELATED TO THE STORY THAT YOU’RE WORKING ON that you’d like to share and maybes have some conversation about.

If it’s the sort of meta-writing that’s “business” related — slugline, cover letter, elevator pitch — and you’d like some intelligent feedback on it, feel free to say that in the post.

Then, in the meanwhile…

You’ll have your own Unlisted Drafts of your stories somewhere else, and you can share them with them who you’d like to share them with, and only them.

If Unlisted Drafts is still magical, strange and dragon-filled territory for you, that’s okay. I’ll talk you through it.

What you think?

I’m thinking of calling the thing…

“Conglom” (short for conglomerate)

What you think? Too…not too enough?

NOTE: (Of course that’s dumb. Besides, you already have a publication running that’d work fine.)

Title and details up for discussion. The publication is called:

Mosaic Playbill

Writers I can think of off the top of me head (an’ if you know of other writers who’d like something like this, shunt them over):

Please, please, please tag more writers.

Clearly, my list is stupidly insufficient. I know that some you guys write fictions and fables and I don’t know it. I know that I’m jus’ plain forgettin’ some of you fable-writers, an’ I’m sorry about that. I know that you fable-writers know each other and that I don’t know all you all. Ain’t no reason why hundreds, maybe twelves — bad with numbers, remember — of us can’t collaborate on a thing like this thing.

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