So many creative initiatives begin life as an offhand comment, initially dismissed.
So it was with #HFChitChat—the idea of a recurring Twitter chat and online community for writers of historical fiction.
It was this—the inherent uncertainty of any long gap of time—that convinced me to go to the recent writers’ conference of the Historical Novel Society’s North American chapter, held June 20-23 in Oxon Hill, Maryland.
Writers’ conferences are expensive, even more so with the exchange from Canadian dollars for those held in the United States. Still, as a writer of historical fiction, I felt it was important for me to go.
Not literally; I’ve never met or communicated with the renowned author and screenwriter personally.
However in her bestselling creative self-help book/program The Artist’s Way, which I completed in 2011, she advocates a practice of “morning pages”—three handwritten, stream-of-consciousness pages of journaling first thing every morning.
My dad had been living there, but passed away almost two years ago (it will be exactly two years at the start of December).
Overall, I consider writing the most solitary of the arts. Not only does writing a novel involve spending months, if not longer, alone inside one’s head trying to reproduce the drama unfolding therein, the interim stages of an unfinished novel hold next to no interest.