Last week I found out I'm a finalist for the RWA (R) Golden Heart (R) Contest for unpublished writers. (I don't know how to make the little symbol with the R in the middle. Sorry.)
For me this was a huge honor. For the cats it was rather traumatic. Poor Buckles was sitting right behind me when I let out a victory screech. It took them a while to confirm I'd regained my sanity before they'd come back over.
Anyway, this will look great on my writing resume and I was so excited for that. Little did I know...
Almost immediately my inbox experienced an inundation of email unlike anything since the great flood, if the flood had been electronic instead of wet. It turns out the finalists are a super fun group of women who want to be my friends!
Writing is a solitary activity, unless you count the people in your head, which my therapist says I can't. So, it means so much to have friends and peers who get the process, who understand the reward of typing The End, who share dreams of being on a book shelf, who get rabid insecurity, and who want to jabber sometimes to people who will answer back. And now, I have a whole bunch more friends to add to my circle! We've known each other via email for less than a week, but already bonds are forming and we're planning to keep in touch long term, to encourage and help each other find success, and to celebrate when we do.
Now, I can't talk about writing friends without mentioning CritGroup13, including Jodie, Christina, and Donna. We've been sharing life and writing for what...six years now? And they probably know me better than almost anyone in the world. Even though we've only gotten to hang out all together once. Once! (If I were going to indulge my corny side, I would say they truly have the Golden Hearts (R). But I won't. And they do.)
So, today I'm grateful for email, that makes long distance friendships so much easier. For friends who stay friends no matter how long its been, and who immediately go into fun-goofy mode the minute you get together again. For fellow writers who share my passion for story, for those moments, however rare, when we can all be together and get a little crazy. For this finalist opportunity, and for all the friends I didn't know came along with it!