I met with a few other local writers on Thursday night. Mostly it was a getting to know you, getting to know what you're working on, and a general sharing of ideas. As usual when writers get together, we were gently shooed out when the place closed down and still had plenty to say in the parking lot.
In a move that was bolder than I usually credit myself for, I handed them the first two chapters of my Work in Progress. I'm trying to see if it still has legs, if there is still a voice to characters, and if it is still worth pouring my heart into.
The initial feedback was so encouraging and inspiring I just can't tell you how much it made my day. Yes, there are bits and pieces that need to polished and cleaned up, but overall I received just a huge encouragement to KEEP WRITING, and it meant so, so much.
We often don't realize how much influence we can wield over a person's day by a few well-chosen words. In Proverbs 3:27 it says, "Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act." I think I ran across a translation of it once that used the word "encouragement" for "good." Do not withhold encouragement...
I like that idea very much.