A Very Important Meeting
Getting help to create that all-important writing practice
To fulfill my goal of ‘write more words’ in 2023, I needed to ignore the incessant, insidious voices in my head and find some motivation. Building on words written already — the novel so far — was a great place to start. But to add to my word count, I needed a writing practice; a daily routine of bum-in-chair. And, to get that, I knew I needed help.
Enter A Very Important Meeting, a ‘mindful writing community’ as their website says. I learned about these meetings as I follow Paulette Perhach on Instagram (great advice and honesty about writing and the writer’s life). She and April Davila founded the site and the community in 2020 to help combat the isolation and loneliness of writers that resulted from the pandemic lockdowns.
I have attended twice a week, almost every week, since the beginning of January and I highly recommend them if you too need to build writing routine ‘muscles’. It’s ten to fifteen minutes of meditation, a forty-five minute writing sprint, followed by a check-in at the end.
Even online, it’s difficult to put yourself ‘out there’ as an introvert, so as my first session approached, I almost bailed. But I stuck with it — I’m learning that consistency comes from sitting with my challenges until they become, well, less challenging! Of course, I knew no one at that first meeting. However, I felt welcomed from the get-go. You take part only as much as you feel comfortable, so I believe I said little other than to introduce myself.
The meditation portion of the time is great for getting your head into writing mode. Being present is what meditation is all about, and as a pre-writing practice, I have found it really hones my focus. I may be biased, as I also have mindfulness as a goal for other areas of my life. However, even if it’s not normally your thing, or you’ve never tried it, I would recommend taking part in this gentle ten-minute practice to see if it helps do the same for you. And, if it really doesn’t work, well just turn off your camera and start writing early! (But you didn’t hear that from me!)
As for the forty-five-minute writing sprint, I’m amazed at how much I get done. I am not a speedy writer, especially by some standards, and my…