1. Dickeys belong on more than one body part.
3. Critique group members can be beautifully inspiring…or rather bawdy.
4. Washing your hair at work may be hazardous to your health.
5. What happens in critique group…gets written about. So beware!
6. Put five women in a room together, and there will be chocolate. And laughter.
7. WWWPs give the best gifts. And sometimes they help each other shop.
8. Critique group members are incredibly talented. You never know when one will pull out the life-sized statue of David she papier-mâchéd out of recycled coffee filters while penning her novel with a child or grandchild on her knee (after work, of course). Or she’ll casually mention the replica of the world map that she needlepointed for a charity event just before entering the triathlon. Or she’ll hand you little personalized gifts she whipped up in between speeches and conferences and side-jobs and writing and submitting and receiving awards for said writing….
10. We adore the art of words, all of us. But I often think these women can have no idea just how precious their words are to me. The ones they’ve written astound and amaze and delight and teach me. The compliments are like an arm extended on a battlefield to rescue me from the endless war with the infamous, art-killing self-doubt. And their criticisms, offered with such honest and wise and tender hands, is in a very real sense the other arm that extends on that same battlefield and lets me know if I grasp hold, they will not release me. They are heroes who help the precious words survive another day. A sincere thank you to the WWWPs—the Wild Women Wielding Pens: Lynn Obermoeller, Linda O’Connell, Sioux Roslawski, and Beth Wood.