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Wednesday, March 6, 2024

Writing in Kind - IWSG March 2024


Welcome to IWSG Day. The goal of this blog hop is to share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a haven for insecure writers of all kinds. IWSG is the brainchild of  our fearless ninja leader Alex Cavanaugh. The Cohost for the March posting of IWSG are: Kristina Kelly, Miffie Seideman, Jean Davis, and ME! To read other contributors, click here.

This month’s question: Have you "played" with AI to write those nasty synopses, or do you refuse to go that route? How do you feel about AI's impact on creative writing?

Since I wrote recently about AI in October and things haven’t changed much (though I did write a synopsis without AI), I’m going to pass on this month’s question. Instead I’d like to talk about something else. Perhaps because I'm co-hosting this month's IWSG for the first time...ever, but this week, I read an old Middle Passages IWSG post from so long ago I didn’t remember writing it. I was testing out my fiction writing chops and had used a scene storming technique to create a piece of flash fiction. Many years later, my take is while the story was good, the writing was not. There were so many things I hadn’t learned yet, I winced a fair bit while reading. Even so, every person who commented on the piece offered positive feedback or a constructive suggestion designed to teach. I guess that's a no brainer considering we're all members of the same “support group," but it bears noting that this type of regular encouragement spurred me to grow as a writer. Here at IWSG, no one bashed my inexperience. Dare I say everyone was nice?

Having grown up in the dark ages of print media, I’m still flabbergasted when I’m on a site where I encounter negative online comments. Back in the day, you couldn’t post a letter to the editor without leaving a name and address, which as a general rule, promoted self-editing. Nowadays, it feels to me as if anonymity breeds negativity. That’s why I am so impressed with IWSG. Over the many years I’ve posted here, I’ve only encountered reassurance and support.

In my early writing days, I followed a [now dark] blog called The Kindness Project. While the name may be different, IWSG is a kindness project of sorts. I suppose blogging is pretty passe now. The bulk of the universe has moved on to newer, faster, quicker things. But I'm so proud of this core of us who remain, encouraging, caring, and supporting. I’m pleased and grateful to find myself in such good company when I show up here every month.