Giving back — group power

By LESLIE BUDEWITZ

SinCWe’re talking this month about giving back, as a way to express our gratitude for the richness of our lives. I am thankful that I have found my passion, the thing I was meant to do—write—and the tremendous support I’ve gotten from my family and friends, of course, but also from complete strangers: readers, booksellers, bloggers, people who share my books with their friends and say “read this—you’ll love it.”

And some of the strongest support has come from other writers. If you chat with any group of writers, you’ll hear them say, with absolute conviction, that writers are some of the most helpful and supportive people they’ve ever known. For the twenty years that I’ve been writing, that has been true. Writing is a solo activity, and most writers are happier, healthier people because we spend much of our time with people who only exist because we made them up. But group support is essential. As I wrote in my essay, “Connecting: Group Power, for the Writer Alone in Her Room,” published in Writes of Passage: Adventures on the Writer’s Journey, by Sisters in Crime (Henery Press), “every opportunity and accomplishment I’ve had as a writer started with something I learned from a group.”

And so this month, I’ve joined the Board of Sisters in Crime, an international organization dedicated to promoting women in crime fiction, as vice president/president elect. It will be a tremendous opportunity to learn, to share, and to give back to this wonderful world of storytellers.

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