“So much depends…..on community”
We altered this sweet, succinct line from the William Carlos Williams poem when we first started Red Wheelbarrow Writers. Six years ago Cami Ostman, Susan Tive, and I began with some classes, but the concept of Red Wheelbarrow quickly evolved into something much less structured, much looser, more fun. When I am asked to describe Red Wheelbarrow, I always say it is a loose affiliation of lively writers.
The loose and the lively are equally important. We don’t have members. We don’t pay dues. We don’t take roll or assign committees. We have no Board, though we have a lively Bored who will now be meeting once a month. At least for a while. That’s also loose.
But the lively connection is all of you: people who have been ongoingly supportive of one another, who have formed writing groups, who have gone on numerous Write Outs together, who have shown up at your amigos’ readings and launches at Village Books, shown up to connect with authors who have come through town, who have, some of you, offered your homes for the annual August garden party. And for those of you who have brought your work to read to your compatriots at the monthly Happy Hour, perhaps Red Wheelbarrow’s finest contribution is the assurance that your voice is not echoing in a void. That though the writer’s is a lonely life, you need not be alone. There are listeners. There are readers. There are people who are just like you, who believe in the white chickens and the red wheelbarrow and the power of language to touch and move, to inform and enliven. People who love the smell of print, the heft of books, the lure of stories. People who have stories to tell, and poems to write.
With this anthology Memory into Memoir, which grew out of our first WhaMemWriMo in September 2015, Red Wheelbarrow takes a big step forward. We are still a loose affiliation of lively writers, but we are coming together to create our own book with our own voices. And, of necessity, our own funds. Our own skills and talents.
Whether you submitted for the anthology or not, your writerly skills, your time and attention can be part of this important endeavor. Red Wheelbarrow is calling upon all its lively writers to contribute to the process. Yes, we need money, but we also need readers and proofers, and copyeditors and a designer. We need people who are good with technology and publicity. We already have a sterling core of writers eagerly engaged in this process, but we need more. We need you.
Memory into Memoir I will be a signal achievement for the writers in this community. Be part of it. Contact us through the website or Facebook, or by email to let us know how you want to be involved. So much depends….