Literary Friendship and a Postcard Prompt

Who helps stoke your literary love? Who are the people you turn to during those dark nights of the soul, when you’re a few hours from a deadline, or doubting your talent, or just stuck deep in a story revision? Maybe it’s just one person. Who is it?

Katie, my friend and upcoming workshop co-teacher, and I have often been that person for each other. We believe a critical part of writing is relationships. That's why we're so excited a healthy handful of you have signed up for the class with a buddy (at 2-for-$200-each!). This week, we stumbled on upon this gem from Alexandra Kleeman and Kathleen Alcott. Here's one of our fave bits:

Writing can be a lonely profession, but when you meet someone whose mind you trust, whose opinions you adore, and whose brain you’d like to smash into yours until they form a single powerful thinking entity, it’s not so bad. –Alexandra Kleeman

It would be so helpful if we could brain-smash, wouldn't it? But then we wouldn't get to hang out wearing shades, smoking pipes, and toiling away on our next piece. 

So for this week, we bring you a special challenge. Try out this week's summer-vacation-themed prompt, and do a writing exchange with a friend! Either make a sweet date and sit down (or do like Maxine Kumin and Anne Sexton do and phone it in) to write with one of those special writer friends. Then share your work with each other. For an even more fun twist, actually send what you write on a postcard. 

Here's a great prompt, made just for friends, from Poets & Writers:

Postcards sent to friends and family from far-off places often have a "Wish you were here!" sentiment. This week, think of someone who's located far away from you, and write a postcard to him or her with the opposite outlook of "Wish I was there!" Explore what exactly it is about "there" that seems so appealing. What are the most striking differences between where you are and where you wish to be? Depict a vivid scenario in just a few, succinct sentences by focusing on sensory descriptions of that distant locale.

Writing as ritual: If the cow doesn't fit your mood, find another cow.

Stories are in our blood