The Jot Conference returns on Friday, September 13th, 2013!

megaphoneYou read it correctly. We’ll be having another JOT: GR Writers Mini-Conference on Friday, September 13th, 2013. We’re working on the outline for the evening now and will be posting updates here as we get things finalized. Here’s what is set in stone:

When: Friday, September 13th, 2013 at 7pm

Where: Baker Book House

What: We’ll be focusing on the same three key goals we focused on for the first JOT conference – Meet. Learn. Write.

Our first goal is to provide writers with an time to meet each other and strengthen the Grand Rapids literary scene through a fun community event.
Our second goal is to provide excellent content for writers to learn something about the craft or the industry.
Our third goal is provide busy writers with space and time to actually write and not just talk about it. We’re all busy, but by attending JOT you are insured some quality writing time in a beautiful local book store.

Cost: Totally FREE.

Who: For sure The Weaklings will be there (Josh, Matt, Bob, and Andy) along with some friends in the publishing industry and writing community. More to come!

We’ve got a lot planned for JOT this September. Watch this space, and our Facebook page, for updates. We’ll be posting them as we’ve got them. Hope to see you there!

Keep writing!

-Andy Rogers

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Writers Need Writers

When I first began writing it was because I wanted to tell a story. I was encouraged by my wife to type away and see what happened. Nothing much did. Ramblings, really bad story telling coupled with even worse grammar.

Fast forward to the next summer and I was working on the first of many drafts. Then, in the Fall the best thing that could happen to a writer happened to me. I became part of a writers group.

We met one evening at my apartment and discussed what we were working on and what the group might look like. Shortly afterward we were doing writing contests, meeting in a pub and discussing our work over meals and darts. We christened ourselves The Weaklings, a nod to the famed Inkilings writers group.

During this time we joked (and I dreamed) of a snow covered log cabin in some remote wood where we could finish our projects. I thought that was what a novelist should be: A solitary figure who unleashes beautiful stories upon the world.

I realize now that I was a fool to think that. A fool to think time is what a writer needs. As a novelist, time is required but there is so much more to the equation. The first thing a writer needs is people. I believe I would be nowhere without my writers group. Without their support, encouragement, gentle critique and open ear.

Now I write with the intention of sharing a story. I write not just for myself, I write for them. My faithful writing companions.

At Jot our hope is that you find a place where you call yourself a writer, share your work, and gain encouragement to boldly step to the page. You can do this by the simple act of getting together with other writers.