What did you do over the weekend?

Oh Hello, Monday...

Good morning, gentle readers. How are you this fine day?

We had a writers retreat over the weekend. I adore these retreats: it's an introvert's paradise. Our writer tribe can come together and create, drink wine and catch up on the old and new. I love writers retreats so much that I wrote about one gone awry. But outside the pages of fiction, this one went smashingly. I'm refreshed and ready for the week ahead.

What did you do over the weekend?

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J.T. Ellison

New York Times bestselling author J.T. Ellison writes dark psychological thrillers starring Nashville Homicide Lt. Taylor Jackson and medical examiner Dr. Samantha Owens, and pens the Nicholas Drummond series with #1 New York Times bestselling author Catherine Coulter. Cohost of the premier literary television show, A Word on Words, Ellison lives in Nashville with her husband and twin kittens.

For more insight into her wicked imagination, join J.T.’s email list at jtellison.com/subscribe, or follow her online at Facebook.com/JTEllison14 or on Twitter @thrillerchick.

Why Writing Alone is Bad For You

Why Writing Alone Is Bad for You

I have a tribe.

You see me thanking them in my acknowledgements all the time, but I don’t know if I give them enough credit for the innumerable ways they help me write my books and live my life. 

They each serve different purposes, and yet, without even one of them, I wouldn’t get anything done. From inspiring me with quotes to leading me in yoga to daily word count accountability, book and movie recommendations, business advice, research questions, and plain old gossip, I adore each and every one of them. Several of them read for me, which is a huge help when I’m developing a story.

This is advice I don’t often give to new writers, but it was on my mind today.

There is nothing, nothing, more important than having a few people around you that you trust. A tribe makes your work is stronger, deeper, more alive. Having a core unit to support you, inspire you, even keep you accountable makes writing easier because, as we know, writing is hard. If it were easy, everyone would do it  

It’s taken me years to find my people, so don’t expect it to happen overnight. And do be careful as you’re getting to know your newfound tribe members. Don’t go all in with the confessions on day one. Work friendships are oftentimes more fraught than finding fun dinner companions — you’re going to be discussing money, and insider information, and contract stipulations and be asked to keep secrets about deals. There are jealousies to manage, and expectations. You won’t all be at the same point in your careers at the same time. Choose your people wisely. 

And when you find those people you can trust with your life, hold them close, and don’t ever let them go. They are a huge component to your ultimate career success, and your sanity as you navigate the treacherous waters of creativity.

Do you have a tribe?

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