No matter what you do, you gotta find your people.

Maybe you love scrap-booking, or Jesus, or dirty fan fiction. Whatever you love, whatever you do because you love it or because you have to do it, you gotta find your people.

If you’re lucky, those people are already your friends, and they’re in your life. However, that’s not always the case. You have to get out of your introverted little bubble and find your people elsewhere. You can find them in the flesh or online, it doesn’t matter. But I’m telling you: FIND THEM.

I took a chance one frigid night in January and attended a meeting at the public library for a group calling itself The Violet Realm. It’s a fantasy/sci-fi writing group formed through the very awesome Iowa Writer’s House. I am an introvert who is very good at mimicking extroverts, so this was a bit of a nerve-wracking experience for me. However, I found myself among a group of wonderfully nerdy folks who really love writing, and I’ve been attending ever since.

The Violet Realm is a friendly, inviting group of people with great facilitators. I like seeing some of the same faces each meeting and meeting new folks who show up. As much as I enjoy the writing sessions and the topics we’ve covered so far (character and world building) the Facebook group online has also been a great way to get in touch with others and feel supported. Today I spent like two hours world building based on our last session and really fleshed out the Grand Isle for my series Harvest of Ash on BigWorldNetwork.com. Pictured above is my super cool map I drew. As a writer that is new to the fantasy genre, the lectures, prompts, and resources provided by The Violet Realm have been amazing. Ash season 2 is going to kick so much more ass thanks to this group!

Sometimes it feels like we write alone, we write in a vacuum, alone in our thoughts — the solitary sensation of being the only person alive on a jettisoned life shuttle after a space station explodes, floating among the silent and unforgiving stars. If you are a writer, I cannot encourage you enough to find your people. They can offer you encouragement, perspective, advice, and support. They get it when our friends and family might not, as much as we love them.

If you live in the Iowa City area, I cannot encourage you enough to come and join us for The Violet Realm. It meets on the first and fourth Tuesday of the month in room B at the Iowa City Public Library 6pm-8pm. I hope to see you there!

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