Don’t be afraid.

I have recently attended two writers’ groups’ end of year gatherings. In the first group there were just under twenty people, which is pretty good considering we met at the uncivilised time of 9.30am. (I had to leave the house an hour before I usually get up!) At first we were polite, shy and reticent to share. But, once we’d all had a cuppa and had tucked into the morning tea, the tongues loosened up. By the end of the meeting there were a half dozen conversations going on at once and I had to tell people to go home. (I can hear you asking, “How did you do that tactfully?” It was easy. I walked up to them and said, “Go home!”) We were encouraged to share our year’s work. I thought, Hmmm. That’ll be short and...

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