Writing in the Ozarks

My husband and I are in the Ozarks–nice time of the year to be in this part of Arkansas. Not sure there is a bad time. I am attending the Ozark Creative Writers Conference in Eureka Springs. It is such a joy. Last night I went to Open Mic night and heard several talented authors read or perform their work–novelists, essayists, children’s writers, song writers…. It has been a while since I have been to such a convocation, and I have missed it.

Writers are a strange breed, often Thoreau types who force themselves away from their metaphoric cabins on their Walden Ponds to gather in meetings, college campuses, across kitchen tables, on telephones, and (Heaven forbid) on ZOOM to be with others who understand their aspirations and their angst, who understand their specific creative urge, and who understand their need to hear a fellow writer explain that creative impulse. No matter how disparate writers’ expressions may be, we understand and appreciate each other’s hard work–something not always true in our other social and career circles. When together, there is a kind of collective sigh, a loosening of the girdle, if you will, that comes when we are confronted with those who recognize our illogical, might we even say “foolhardy,” ambitions. Those ambitions have little to do with riches. Painfully few even fantastic writers have the success of a J. K. Rowlings or even a Harry Jones (no, I never heard of him either). It has to do to with our need to place the mortar and bricks we find scattered about in our imaginations atop each other until something beautiful (or scary) is constructed. Then it is rather nice if someone else admires its beauty or intended wretchedness. Afterall, architects and bridge builders want their work acknowledged, don’t they?

Anyway, Eureka Springs is a lovely place. The tribe is here–expression abounds. Here we are extroverts for this “one shining moment” that is Camelot.


8 thoughts on “Writing in the Ozarks

  1. I think of you often on these crisp fall mornings. I know this is your favorite time of year.

    Love your message about being elbow to elbow with other writers in the beautiful Ozarks. I am behind in reading your other writings. My goal is to catch up. Love you, JoAn

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, JoAn. Yes, I love this time of year. I think of you and our friends and colleagues at TYC often. There has been some water under the bridge (pardon the cliche). Special and sometimes trying times that were meant to be. I appreciate your reading my meanderings. Much love to you and Earl.💕


  2. Having witnessed my unpublished daughter get the same sort of joy from gathering around other writers, I am reminded of the Japanese concept of Ikigai. Finding purpose at the intersection of what you love, what you’re good at, what the world needs, and what you can be paid for. While the odds of that last one are fairly slim for most authors, 3 out of 4 isn’t bad 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Exactly, Brian. While, practically, one has to “make a living,” riches in one’s life actually are seldom monetary. And it is more rewarding to work hard at becoming good at what one loves. Thanks for commenting.


  4. Well said, Brenda, as always! And congratulations on your children’s novel prize!
    I’d love to hear more about it.

    I can feel the energy of the conference through your description. The last one I went to was in Gunnison, CO. I added 5 days to tour around like you are doing. One of my unforgettable adventures was driving a little dirt road over the continental divide.

    At the conference I met a woman who was doing the kind of interspecies interaction with horses that I am finally getting to do. So wonderful when you go for one purpose and receive such gifts as black barns, famous springs, horses, and other unexpected treats.


    1. Thanks for the comments, Mare. I think I could travel most of the time if it were feasible. Our cat and the cows don’t appreciate our leaving for too long. I find that experiences are so important. Never know what you’ll discover.


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