I'm married to a writer. I never knew writers before. And now I get to be around them a lot. I'm an artist, of course, but I've never really socialized much with other artists; never actually felt part of the "tribe". So it's been a revelation to experience the warmth and camaraderie that I routinely witness within the writing community here in Portland. I don't know how other writing communities are; maybe Portland is the exception. Here, writers come out to hear writers read, big or small readings. I see well-established authors, with multiple books published, and relative novices at the same events. Often reading at the same events. Sharing contacts, happy to put in a good word with an agent or publisher for someone trying to get ahead. Sadly, a lot of the people who've "made it" in their careers are afraid of others getting too much success in the same field. But I never see that here. And I see very little sign of hierarchy. But I see such generosity, always.
I've read a lot lately on the status of women in the Arts. It's shocking how they get published less, performed less, shown less. Ironically, the vast majority of the writers - and published writers - I know or are acquainted with are women. Such fantastic writers. As supportive as the writing community is, here in Portland, the writing women are maybe even more so. They are so kind to each other, they give each other time and smart advice, they are so amazingly available to each other. I'm afraid - as a man, after all - to muddle my way into speaking about the nurturing natures of women, but that's what I see so much of, honestly. The writing women who have been published, wanting so much for those who haven't been to have that, too. There isn't a feeling of scarcity; there's enough for everyone. "Here, look, I made this beautiful cake. It's so damned good! Have a piece; I'll give you the recipe."
2 days ago