A chat is defined as “an informal conversation”. To engage in a chat is “to talk in a friendly, informal way”.
Chatting is equally applicable to friends and strangers, and is customarily performed in a relaxed and leisurely manner.
But almost all of this changes when it comes to a Twitter chat, and you are one of the chat hosts.
Me with Texas writer Sydney Young (L) and 2018 PitchWars mentor Carrie Callaghan (R) at the 2019 Historical Novel Society writers’ conference
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.
If I didn’t go now, I’d have to wait until 2021.
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.
Twelve books a year doesn’t trouble me anymore, but it did at the time. I found myself floundering beneath the burden of various competing obligations, some mandatory, some discretionary, and that reading, my oldest pastime, had fallen far by the wayside.
Renowned horror/supernatural/spec fic author Stephen King famously claimed the following:
“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”
He’s right in more ways than one. The tools that reading has to offer are numerous.
I’m always taken aback when a non-writer is impressed by the act of writing a novel.
In last week’s post, I wrote about my passion for writing and how, in reality, my devotion to it presents as rather obsessive and possibly a little pathetic.
I haven’t done nearly enough reading this year.
I started 2018 off strong, with my previous Recent Reads post from January to March including four completed books.
(Well technically, three books and one novella, but one of those books was a reference for the next historical fiction novel I plan to write. Reading that required highlighting and note-taking that slowed me down considerably, and perhaps balances out the novella’s shorter length.)