Camaraderie is a wonderful thing (albeit tricky to spell).

I was touched by the camaraderie I saw on display at the Tony Awards ceremony a few weeks ago. When the cast of a Broadway show finished their musical performance, the camera showed them coming offstage, being cheered by the cast of another Broadway show about to go on for their performance. You could feel the brassy love and support between each group.

Back in the day, I did some acting in the theatre, and I can tell you one of the many highs from those days was the feeling of camaraderie among the cast and crew. You see this in all kinds of groups where everyone is aiming for a collective goal amid pressure, nerves, and charged emotions. Playing in a band, competing as part of a team, working on a construction crew, fighting on a battlefield.

Writing is mostly done solo. And there’s a beauty to cocooning yourself in the world of your words and story, whether you’re alone in a room or surrounded by people in a public space.

Still, writers need camaraderie, for the sake of their work, not to mention their mental health.

You can always try brainstorming with one or more people. Ask them to help you brainstorm ideas for your story with an offer to return the favor.

Recently we needed a fun idea for our summer writing contest, so I brainstormed with Emma (from our staff) and Maya (our current intern). Someone would toss out an idea, we’d bat it around, make it better, then we’d keep tossing and batting and improving.

We came up with the Not-So-Great Outdoors Contest, which I hope you’ll enter.

Writing classes are also a great place to find camaraderie. I can feel it from the NYC classes adjoining our offices: when I hear a wave of laughter or peek in to see everyone diving into a classmate’s story, offering praise and advice. But there’s also plenty of communing in our Zoom and Online classes, where you get the bonus of students from all over the place.

Hey, we have lots of summer classes starting soon.

Also, please consider coming to one of our free writing classes in Bryant Park this summer, starting Thursday July 6. We always get a great turnout of writers at all levels. And we have a super lineup of teachers and topics. These nights are kind of magical—writing in this gorgeous jewel of a park smack dab in the middle of the most vibrant city in the world. It’s a welcoming vibe, an easy place to make a friend or just feel the excitement of people coming together for a writing adventure.

Alex Steele,


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