Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Writer Support

Guest Post by Alex J. Cavanaugh. 

A huge thank you to Alex for taking the time to write this post. You are a true Ninja Captain Extraordinaire. Take it away, Alex:

I was honored when Lynda invited me to visit her blog. Her posts on writing are so full of wisdom and guaranteed to make you think. However, writing tips are not what you want from me! So, I’ll give you something else writers need - support.

It’s a struggle for anyone in a creative position. Every step of the writer-author process is full of frustration, doubt, and anxiety. We throw ourselves to the world, desperate for acceptance and full of uncertainty. No matter what our strengths or ability to endure, we simply can’t do it alone.

Recently I launched the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. A casual comment in an email sparked the idea. Would a group make a difference? The tone of some of my fellow bloggers’ recent posts told me there was a need though.

Taking the initiative, I set up the group and announced that the first Wednesday of every month would be our official posting day. Those who signed up were to post either insecurities or words of encouragement and visit at least a dozen other writers on the list.

What’s happened since that time is incredible! Now three months old and over two hundred strong, the group has taken on a life of its own.

So many have poured out their hearts and voiced their deepest fears. In return, members have left strong words of encouragement and consolation in their comments. Everyone discovered another writer in a similar situation or one who was further down the path and could offer guidance. Bloggers seemed to connect on every level possible.

This is why we are here - to offer support and encouragement. We face so many uncertainties as writers. We all need support and someone to tell us it will be all right.

I’ve been blessed by this group. The countless comments and emails from fellow writers, offering thanks and appreciation for the group, tell me that it’s all worth it. If I accomplish nothing else in life, I hope that I’ve given others a way to find hope.

Whether it’s with the Insecure Writer’s Support Group or the help of other writers, bloggers, or friends, every writer needs support. We may write alone, but we are not in this alone!

Alex J. Cavanaugh is known online as Ninja Captain Alex. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. An avid blogger, he hosts blogfests, other authors, and the Insecure Writer’s support Group. His first book, CassaStar, was released October 2010, and the sequel, CassaFire, comes out February 28, 2011.


Old Kitty said...

Awwwww every time I read a post by Capn Ninja - I just want to give him a great big hug! Sigh!

Thanks Lynda and thanks Alex! Take care

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks, Kitty - I'll take that hug!

Thank you so much for the opportunity, Lynda!

Golden Eagle said...

Great post.

Alex really is amazing!

Jessica Bell said...

Alex, you really have done an amazing thing organizing this group. Sometimes I think I have content for an insecure writer's post every day. LOL, but this once a month this is fanastic, in that, now, we're not complaining :o) We're participating! hahahaa

PK HREZO said...

It's such a great cause. Writer friends are like none other, and the bonding is so valuable. Alex has given us another platform to do this, and it's a benefit to everyone who participates. :)

Marta Szemik said...

I feel so blessed to have found this group and the writers/bloggers who come along with it. It's all thanks to you Alex. Thanks Lynda for hosting!

Unknown said...

Thanks Alex! You are the best and I'll say it again, I am so grateful our paths crossed in Blog Land. You've really helped me over this last year.

Lynda, your tips are always outstanding and I know when I come here, I'll be learning something. Thank you!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Golden, thank you!

That's right Jessica - now we have an excuse!

PK and Marta, glad you're enjoying the group.

Melissa, very happy I found you!

Jen Groepl said...

I'm in! What a super idea!

Arlee Bird said...

Support and encouragement is a great thing for any of us and it's good that you put this group together. Much of the time I think we write in part to explore our own securities as well as face them head on.

Tossing It Out

Stina said...

It was definitely an awesome idea, Alex.

farawayeyes said...

Great Blessings come to someone who is willing to look out for everyone. The known, the unknown and everyone in between.

Thank you, thank you and thank you again.

Cynthia Chapman Willis said...

Such a wonderful idea. I just love how supportive and giving this community of writers is.

Mary Aalgaard said...

That's it! Exactly. Your words echo mine today. Write on!

Luna said...

You rock, Alex! Thank you, Lynda! :)

Suze said...

Three cheers for both Alex and Lynda!

Empty Nest Insider said...

More words of wisdom from our fearless leader! Lynda, thanks for hosting Alex and great to meet you through the blogfest! Julie

Carol Riggs said...

Thanks, Alex, for setting up this needed group! We writers can be an insecure lot, and we need each other's support. :)

Mark said...

Amen, glad to be part of the movement:)

Sarah Allen said...

That is such a great idea. Thanks for that :) Keep being amazing!

Sarah Allen
(my creative writing blog)

Luanne G. Smith said...

Thanks for taking the initiative and putting the group together. If nothing else, it does help to know that you aren't alone in your feelings of doubt and insecurity. And I've met some new bloggers along the way. Win win. :)

N. R. Williams said...

I know I have enjoyed reading the post of other insecure writers. Thank you for starting it Alex.
N. R. Williams, Fantasy Author

Anonymous said...

That's awesome, Alex. Good on ya, mate!

Kit Courteney said...

I must admit that within my circle of writing friends, we are all pretty insecure but it's so lovely to meet other insecurees!

Reading their posts today has been inspirational.

Thanks Alex and great blog Lynda!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Jennifer, welcome!

Lee, that is true.

Faraway, I'm happy it's been a blessing to you.

Mary, that's cool!

Julie, not always fearless, but always trying to do my best.

Everyone, thank you for YOUR words of encouragement!

J.L. Royal said...

Great post and I'm very glad you took initiative and created the group, Alex.

Laila Knight said...

Thank you Lynda and Alex for this great post. The Insecure Writer's Group is an awesome opportunity to not only meet but get in touch with the heart of every writer. Alex, it was a wonderful idea of yours. You rock, Ninja Man!!! :)

Southpaw said...

I really like the IWG idea. We all have them but we worry about sharing them - but once a month we all share together or get words of hope. I like that.

Unknown said...

I love it, Alex! Just participated in the Blog Hop for the first time today. I am amazed at all the wonderful blogs I've never visited. This could be bad though, LOL...I am a self-professed blog junkie ;)But thanks to you for bringing us all together!

Stacy S. Jensen said...

Thanks for sharing the background on how that began. I've lurked around at several of the blogs participating.

Jen said...

Fabulous post, Alex! We're all thankful you took the intiative and gave us a place to voice those fears and offer up encouragement.

Happy Wednesday!

Isis Rushdan said...

Organizing this group was an amazing spark of genius backed by a lot of heart. Thanks for being such an awesome Ninja Capt.

Nancy Thompson said...

Thanks for hosting Alex, Lynda! Imagine, two of my favorite bloggers in one place!

And Alex, I so appreciate the IWSG. It allows me to vent my frustrations while meeting others who share my goals, ambitions, fears and anxieties. I look forward to the first Wednesday every month. So thank you for putting all this together. You're awesome!

Anonymous said...

I agree with Isis - you (BOTH) show a lot of heart - thank you (Lynda)for great pointers; (Alex) for what you do best!!

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Wow, what wonderful comments and support to wake up to this morning. Thank you all!

Alex, thank you again for coming to guest post here. You are a legend!

Old Kitty, I'm with you! I reckon the ninja is totally huggable.

Golden, he IS amazing!

Jessica, I'm the same. My posts for the group are the only ones I have ready ahead of time because there's so much material for them.

Pk, until a writer experiences it, they won't know the true value of that bonding.

Marta, yes, huge thanks to Alex :)

Melissa, thank you so much

Jennifer, fantastic!

Lee, yes, I think you are right. As writers we explore both the inner and outer world.

Stina, and I love how everyone has taken to it too.

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Farawayeyes, that could become a famous quote.

Cynthia, it puts a smile on my face.

Mary, great minds...

Jamie, thanks

Suze, hip-hip-hoorah!

Insider, wonderful meeting you too. Welcome!

Carol, we are an insecure lot, aren't we ;)

Mark, same here

Sarah, and its popularity has grown.

Luanne, knowing I'm not alone has make a huge difference to me.

Nancy, they've all been great.

Ibdiamond, that's a very Aussie thing to say ;)

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Kit, inspirational is definitely the right word.

Patricia, same here

Laila, yes, exactly...and he so rocks! :)

Southpaw, yes, it gives us the freedom to be honest about those insecurities.

Charissa, hehe there's a lot of us blog junkies around. It's because the community is so great.

Stacy, that's the beauty of this group. It helps everyone, even lurkers ;)

Jen, I second that

Isis, well said!

Nancy, aw, thanks.

Young, thanks so much. That means a lot to me.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I wrote for so long without any support. There's so few writers in my area (out in the middle of pig country) but online, they are everywhere.

M Pax said...

Your generosity has been great support, Alex. That is a great accomplishment in itself. IWSG rocks.

Happy IWSG, Lynda.

Unknown said...

What I like about the monthly posts is that even though someone may post something that someone had posted about a month or two back, it probably helped an insecure writer, just at the right time. Does that make any sense?

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thank you, Laila!

Charissa, I'm glad you're enjoying it! I'm still working my way through the list. Might take me a while!

Stacy, feel free to join us next month.

Jen and Isis, thanks so much.

Nancy, thanks and glad it's provided an outlet for so many.

Clarissa, makes sense to me! Just like authors - doesn't matter how many times the same story is told, it's always told from a different perspective.

Thanks, everyone. And big thanks, Lynda!

Ella said...

Thank you Alex, you are a Rock Star~
Can you hear the applause? ;D

Beautiful post; hope means so much~

Tonja said...

It's a great group to have joined. Very cool how many people you connected together with one idea.

dolorah said...

It has been an inspiring idea Alex. Thanks for creating the environment and being such a gracious host.


Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Diane, yes, I feel geographically isolated, but I've found most of my suppost online too.

Mary, thanks

Clarissa, yep, totally makes sense to me.

Ella, I can also hear the cheers.

Tonja, yes, indeed

Donna, I second that!

Anonymous said...

I do believe it's time I join the group! I need all the encouragement I can get at the moment ;D
Thanks for starting it up Alex
Thanks for hosting Alex, Lynda

Sarah Tokeley said...

When people say that 'playing around on the internet' is a waste of time, I just want to make them read posts like these.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Ella, it's like the sound of the ocean...

Tonja and Donna, thanks.

Michelle, please join us.

Sarah, some people just don't understand.

Thanks again, Lynda.

Jan Morrison said...

Yay Alex! And yay Lynda for hosting him. I love the support group - although I have lots of pals it is significantly different to hear from people who are in the same spot - that somewhat lonely old writing spot where insecurity roams like a wildebeest looking for likely prey.
So thanks to both of you.

LTM said...

yay for Alex! I'm glad you formed the group, and I love reading the posts. However, I've found this blogging-writer's community of friends to be the thing without the name. We all support each other, we all share our fears--perhaps not "on the record"--and it's been the most encouraging thing this insecure writer has found.

Fellow writers rock~ :o) <3

Luna said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

It's a great idea, Alex. This group has given me a wonderful venue to network with other writers. Exchanging thoughts with likeminded people has been cathartic. As a fiction writer, it's easy to feel like I'm alone, battling all those gremlins who try to sabotage my process. However, after reading many of the posts from the ISWG, I realize I have an army at my disposal whenever I need it. Sorry about the metaphor, it's early.

Jessica Salyer said...

Once again thank you Alex for starting this group. I hope you know(and can see that it shows by the comments here) how much this means to all of us. Thanks Lynda for hosting.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Great post! Thanks so much for hosting Alex - and Thank you Alex for starting the Insecure Writers' Support Group - you rock!

Anonymous said...

This is a great way to share support and meet new people. Life gets crazy and we need all the support we can get!

Joanne said...

Oh, I had a bit of a tear in my eye. This is wonderful. Now I can write about my fears and insecurities without pretending that writing a novel is easy. Thanks for the Insecure Writer's support Group. Yay!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Jan, we slay the widebeast!

LTM, they do rock!

Andrea, it is indeed an army.

Jessica, I'm just glad so many have benefitted.

Tyrean, you are welcome!

Joanne, glad it could move you.

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Michelle, that's fantastic to hear!

Sarah, yes, exactly!

Jan, the IWSG is the best defence against those wildebeests.

Leigh, I think it's in a writer's nature to support other writers. I see it everywhere I go where there are writers about. It's a wonderful thing.

Andrea, the metaphor works for me :)

Jessica, I'm honoured that Alex agreed to the guest post.

Tyrean, he rocks big time!

Stephen, totally agree

Joanne, anyone who says writing a novel is easy, is kidding themselves.

Thanks again, Alex

Lydia Kang said...

This is such a great idea. Writing can be so isolating and our insecurities can be so potent.

Rusty Carl said...

I love The Insecure Writer's Support Group. I can't thank Alex enough for starting it. So, thanks man.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Rusty, you are welcome!

Rachna Chhabria said...

Hi Ninja Captain Alex...I just love the sound of this group as right now, I am in a writing slump, surrounded by insecurities. Its a great idea.

Amie Kaufman said...

Nobody understands a writer like another writer -- the best support definitely comes from someone who's been where you are.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Rachna, glad it's a benefit to you! said...

Impressive how the little acorn of a comment has grown into such a mighty oak. here here, we may all write alone but yes we have one another to share our ups and downs with. Great post and supportive bloghop.

Michael Offutt, Phantom Reader said...

Alex you are an inspiration to writers everywhere with your words.

Romance Reader said...

Great post! An inspiration and awesome support for aspiring writers! Thank you Alex and Lynda.

Romance Reader said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I enjoy reading posts from this group. I also love how writers are supportive of other writers. It's a very warm community.

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Lydia, yes, writing CAN be so isolating, but with group like this it doesn't have to be.

Rusty, thanks too for popping by.

Rachna, I hope you get out of your slump

Amie, totally agree

Madeleine, it is impressive isn't it!

Michael, more than he knows, I think

Romance, thanks

Medeia, it is indeed :)

And thanks again Alex

Nas said...

Hi Lynda, Hello Alex!

What a great support for aspiring writers. Truly Alex is an inspiration with his words!

Thanks Lynda.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks Michael and Romance!

Medeia, the support is amazing in this group.

Lynda, thanks again so very much.

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Thanks, Nas and thanks again Ninja Captain.