on the lamentable lack of writing groups in the farmington valley

So, I belong to a wonderful poetry group called the Faxon Poets, based in Elmwood CT (a mini-town of West Hartford). The group is fantastic, the people are wonderful, and I love meeting with them monthly to laugh and read and share and critique. When I lived 10 minutes from there (and my boyfriend’s apartment, before we lived together, was 2 minutes from the meetup location), it was great. I remember walking to Faxon to meet with the group after Snowtober.

But now we live in Canton, half an hour from the Faxon Branch library. And right now it’s snowing. My car is a 1996; it’s starting to make noises and it needs new tires, but it also needs a new car, so I’m torn as to which to deal with first on my limited budget. Meantime, I’m very uncomfortable driving on a day like today – there’s no accumulation on the roads YET, but the snow is supposed to pick up, and I have to go over Avon mountain to get there and back again.

I checked the glorious intarwebs for an alternative, a writers’ group closer to my current home. The ONLY thing available is the Farmington Valley Writers’ Group, and they use comic sans on their meetup webpage.

Comic. Fucking. Sans.

A comic sans loving group is not the kind of group I want to be a part of. (Maybe there’s a local group for typography snobs I could join? XD)

I’ve thought about starting up my own writers’ group, with a little more structure than Faxon – I love them, but the group has so many members that in a 2 hour meeting, you get maybe 8 minutes, if you’re lucky, to pass out your poem, read it, and get feedback. It’s wonderful that the group has grown and blossomed into a great little mini-community, but it leaves me hungry for something a little more constructive than “whee that was a great poem, good job, on to the next share!” I’m hungry to improve; I want to push myself to become better.

What do you think? Have any of you started a writers’ group? What challenges did you face? Do you belong to a group as a non-founder/organizer? What kind of experience has it been? Let me know in the comments!

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