Tuesdays with Story History
We trace back to 2001, a small group of writers gathering on the second-and-fourth Tuesday evenings at Barnes & Noble Westside. The following year, the group came under the casual leadership of Ben LeRoy, a partner in Bleak House Books, a local publishing house.
Ben recalls that, when he started, the group was five people around the table, something of a mutual admiration society. It evolved over time, and with the infusion of new people, into a group that provides serious critiques graciously delivered because we hold to an accepted attitude that we are all in this together — you help me, I’ll help you and both our writing will become better for it.
Our numbers grew to 42 in January of 2004, making it difficult for writers to get on the program as often as many wanted, so we discussed options. The best, came the consensus, was to split and form a second group. We did that in March with the two groups meeting separately for the first time in April.
Our numbers rose to a peak of 54, but a number of those had gone inactive or had moved and hadn’t asked that they be taken off our lists. In May 2004, we contacted the inactives and asked whether they wished to remain on. As a consequence, we cut our numbers to 38, almost all of whom are active writers. Our numbers, as of January 2005, stand at 46.
In August 2004, we adopted our current name, Tuesdays with Story, and established an on-line presence with our own web site.
When we gather to review the work of our colleagues, we try our best to be gracious, welcoming to all, enjoy the fellowship of everyone, and particularly we try to be respectful of others’ comments and critiques, especially when we disagree with those comments and critiques. We do not attack the person.
We are a diverse group — novelists, mystery writers, writers of fantasy fiction for young adults, children’s writers, memoir writers, essayists, article writers, poets . . . ages range from high school students to retired, a fairly even split of male and female.
A significant number of our writers are published — novels, short stories, poetry and nonfiction, the latter taking in the sweep of articles, news stories, feature stories and columns for journals, magazines and newspapers.
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