In the Company of Good Friends

Mindy McHorse

Hi, Mindy McHorse here. Today I want to share with you viewpoints from my husband Craig, who has seen me flourish in my writing career. Craig has seen the ups … the downs … my determination and desire to succeed … and how living the writer’s life has been the best decision I could have made.

Ask Craig and he’ll tell you there are a lot of funny perks to living with a writer.

For starters, our kids — all six and younger — use bigger words than a lot of kids. Craig says, “It’s all cool till you have to explain to another dad why your daughter called his daughter ‘pecoo-ly-ar’ (peculiar).”

Our kids are too young to know much about punctuation, yet they end their sentences by saying, “Period.” Craig freely admits that’s thanks to me using the voice-to-text option on my phone all the time.

But there’s something deeper to living the writer’s life. We get to enjoy a lot of quality family time because we don’t both have to rush from standard 9-to-5 jobs getting the kids from school. Any last-minute stuff that comes up, I’m on it.

For Craig and I, it’s a huge plus that we can make big decisions based on what’s best for our family, not based on how it fits in with work.

That’s all cool and dandy. Yet there’s something else we benefit from, something I never expected when I first decided I wanted to write for a living. I hoped to be successful, I just never thought about all the other successful writers I would meet in this career, or how they’d affect us.

You see, every year, I get to go to at least two AWAI events. My husband has traveled with me. The people we’ve met, and the ones that have grown to be friends, aren’t like a lot of our friends back home.

For starters, they’re happier. They seem driven, but in a positive way. They talk about life goals, travel hopes, and adventures like they’re all things that will really happen.

Have you ever met people who are the opposite of that? People who spend their days checking boxes off the calendar, trying to make it to the end of the week, then the end of the month, then the year?

I know too many people like that. That’s why I think being around other writers and successful entrepreneurs have a kind of radical effect on your mindset.

If there were one thing I could change, it would be to believe in myself sooner. To take more risks sooner.

I think meeting other writers from this world helped me gain the confidence that others don’t understand or know how to give. It’s always nice meeting other people who like the things you like and pursue the same huge aspirations. I call other writers my favorite kind of friends because they don’t raise their eyebrows when I tell them what I hope to accomplish with my writing.

Other writers, well, they are my tribe. My cronies. They’re co-conspirators in the writing world.

You have them too. Right now, list out anybody you have that supports you on this level in your life. People whose outlook supports big, out-of-the-box, quality-of-life decisions.

If you don’t currently have friends who are writers, go get some. Look into local writing groups or online writing groups. Anywhere you can gain support. Because I can tell you from experience, this support system is priceless.

Share thoughts and comments below. Tomorrow, I’m going to tell you how to let your freak flag fly. Meaning how to be true to yourself as a writer in the New Year.

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Published: December 31, 2015

13 Responses to “In the Company of Good Friends”

  1. So true. So, so true.
    Sadly, it took me a long time to realize that my writer friends are the bomb. But what do you do when you need a boost and they're all writing? (I know! Go and re-read AWAI emails!) I think I need to share your advice with other would-be writers. And then I should write.
    Thanks, Mindy.

    Guest (Pauline Clark)

  2. YES Mindy!!! This is so true. I cherish my writer-friends more and more as I observe this difference between them and other friends/family. It's good to hear this articulated. Thanks. And Happy New Year to you and your family Mindy. :-)

    Lee Nourse

  3. Brilliance By Wayne Smith Sr.
    That which is of benevolent thought will surely be revealed.
    From the power of the mind one can be great in any field.
    Awaken that slumbering power within and put it to the test.
    A caring word is a calming sound.
    An honest compliment will go far and may even turn a life around.
    Most of all, a whisper of love is the greatest to be heard in all the realms of sound.

    Guest (Wayne Smith Sr)

  4. Good advice. However, to be picky,the article may be embarassing for a professional writer. "For Craig and I" ... Really?

    Guest (Dee)

  5. I can see the benefits. Will have to find other people who enjoy the writing process :)


  6. Thank again and again your words are strengthening and full of spurs.


  7. Hi Mindy, Great article, though I admit I envy you your friends who helped you find the confidence you needed. I want to be a great success at writing, but can't even find where to start much less the confidence to get started. I live alone, stay alone and have few friends. I can talk to people easily, but other writers there have no time to help, it seems, and I've asked what to do. No answers ever come forth. I've have always enjoyed all you write, I think you're great and beautiful!Period.

    Guest (Ray Moon)

  8. I have had such encouragement to embrace writing by my family, my husband and children, as well as peers. AWAI has been an inspiration as well as an education to help me to see what is around me in the writer's world. I have been amazed. I am looking forward to this new adventure.


  9. Man, the vessel in which what literally matters is what transcends unto spirit. An E = emcee/squared kinda thing, yes? And if mine, i.e. what matters most to me, is too foregone an audacious predisposition to what others will never achieve then so too the chalice from which the dagger comes inversely squared in spirituality's undue dismay.

    Guest (Chris Morris)

  10. i sorta have a couple of people like those, i message several fellow fanfic writers on the fanfiction website that i joined a few years ago and my oldest brother also supports me as well.

    Guest (multyfangirl writer in texas)

  11. Your words resonate with your heart Mindy. I was beaten up by life so badly, I became convinced I would never recover. Reading and believing stories like yours and others here at AWAI gives me hope that I would not have anywhere else. Words create feelings and when they are created from our heart, they speak to the hearts of others. Thank you. At some time we just have to trust and walk by faith though the doors God opens in our lives.

    Dr Bill

  12. Thanks for sharing this Mindy. It is so true that having a community of safe people to encourage you as your pursue your writing and other priceless.

    Cheryll Messam

  13. How can I find friends to support me in writing and working with AWAI in Atlanta, Ga. who have it in common with me? Do you have any gatherings in Atlanta, Ga.?

    Guest (Shahidah)

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