Thursday nights are getting a little more creative at the Elkin Public Library with the start of a Creative Writing Club. Initiated by Kasey Nowalk after several successful Open Mic nights, this club is open to adults who are interested in sharing ideas, reading feedback and encouraging one another in the writing process. Meetings will be held twice a month at 6 p.m. at the library and should last until 7:50.
Participants were very excited about assisting one another in their current projects as well as finishing existing ones. Julie Gunshenan, instructor at Surry Community College, attended a similar club through the Boonville library that fell through because of lack of attendance. She said she started writing for fun because of boredom and decided she should do more with what she had written. Gunshenan hopes the club will help her “find somebody to bounce ideas around with. If I have to show (her work) to somebody on a regular basis, it will make me more diligent.”
Although several participants are, like Gunshenan, looking forward to having deadlines, others are interested in “exercising the creative muscle” as noted by Taylor Groce. Groce has written for foster care and adoption blogs as well as a personal finance blog, but she is looking forward to having a creative outlet. “I tend to be in the box, black and white. I want to get back into writing for fun.”
Cassi Mathis has a plan. “One of my dreams is to write a novel. I have a novel that is about 10 pages. I have the story. I need to learn how to get more creative.” Mathis also is interested in reading the work of other aspiring writers such as the memoirs of fellow club member Burt Bollinger, who only started writing a year ago after reading everything from cereal boxes to a 1,000-page novel.
Like Mathis, Pat Ihrig is an aspiring novelist. She is working on rewriting a story for young readers based on her husband’s experience as a teenager. “I’ve had some inquiries from agents, but it’s not in final form.” Ihrig has been at the writing process for some time and likens the life of a writer to “the loneliness of a long-distance runner.”
All the writers can look forward to inspiration and polishing their pieces. Each meeting will start with a writing exercise and will be followed by reviews of 10 pages or less submitted by two members each session. Some will be given verbal reviews; however those who choose may receive written critiques only.
For more information on the Creative Writing Club, contact Nowalk at [email protected] or 336-835-5586.
Beanie Taylor can be reached at 336-258-4058 or on Twitter @TBeanieTaylor.