It was the triumphant return of my writer’s group today. It was a good group too- nine people in total, which feels like a good number for full strength. Most of the members were long-timers who have been reading chapter after chapter after chapter of my novel for the last year, and who have had both node things to say and some excellent notes to solve problems that I hadn’t even seen myself.

Love those guys.

For a holiday gift I offered to write a flash fiction in which my main character attended one of our meetings and described, in his own bitingly incisive way, each of the group members. It was a risk to write: my main character is both sharp and direct and it was one thing to turn this kind of laser focus on another fictional character than to turn it on a real friend. I gained a HUGE amount of respect for Christopher Bueleman- a fellow writer and sometime Professional Insulter at Renaissance Faire’s for his ability to read an audience in real time to know how hard to push on their insecurities.

Truly a master at work.

For an amateur like me I was just hoping to lightly roast everybody for a bit of good fun. It took more than just an afternoon to write so I didn’t send it until after Christmas, but no one seemed to mind and the response was good. This was the first meeting back since the holidays, and everybody was still willingly making light of their new nicknames as delivered by the character: this character is one of those people who bestows nicknames with a kind of backhanded flourish that makes them stick, and ironically it’s not a skill that I myself possess. (I can come up with nicknames, but they don’t often stick).

So everybody now has a new nickname. And everybody seems to love it. It’s my secret hope that all the folks in this group will someday become an Inklings group of famous writers so that future readers will read this little piece of flash fiction and try to guess what famous writer is being lampooned.

It’s good to dream big.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on January 13, 2019.

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