Sunday, 15 May 2011

Join a Group and Save your Life

As a result of problems with Blogger some of your much appreciated comments have disappeared. I have reposted my responses to them and only hope that Blogger will reinstate them soon.




I was at my lunch/book group the other day (yes, it’s ladies who lunch again!) and my writer friend, Josephine, said that she’d read about a study which proves that there are health benefits to being a member of a group. I googled it and it’s true (allegedly).

I often go on about the benefits of belonging to a writing group but I didn’t realise it was good for your health as well as your writing. It’s apparently to do with social interaction and mutual support networks.

I do belong to quite a few groups (so fingers crossed this theory works!) The lunch/book group is made up of writers, illustrators and other interested people. We meet once a month to discuss a book... and eat. It’s one of those ‘bring a dish and put it on the table’ type of lunches and the food it always amazing. (One day we’re going to write a book of all our recipes!) And Josephine is right. The benefits of this group go way beyond discussing writing issues or the monthly book chat. We support each other, share personal problems, give each other a boost when things aren’t going too well.

I haven’t done much real writing recently, especially during Mum’s final illness, but I came home from Monday’s lunch feeling inspired. I had a story (8,500 words aimed at 7 to 9 year olds) that was almost finished and was sitting gathering ‘dust’ in the pending file of my computer since March 2010. I opened it up, finished it off and I’ve submitted it to a publisher. It will probably come straight back but, as I’m always saying, you can’t get your work published if you never send it out. So, loads of thanks to my lunch/book group. You’ve helped me out yet again.

Another group that I now feel well and truly a part of are the Bloggers. This week I have been given two awards so thank you to K.C. Woolf from The Woman Condition for the Versatile Blogger Award,


and San from Informed Sharing for the 7 Facts Sunflower Award.


I know, I know, I now have to list 7 things about myself. They’re going to be quick and snappy to here goes:

1.  I love chatting with friends.
2.  I hate driving distances.
3.  I love cats and dogs.
4.  I hate mustard.
5.  I love playing Bridge.
6.  I hate flying.
7.  I love chocolate (of course!)

Now I’m going to pass the 7 Facts Sunflower Award on to some bloggy people who shared those hectic April A to Z days with me:

Manzanita at Wanna Buy a Duck
Sandy Axelrod at Food and Fond Memories
Duncan D. Horne at Our home called Kuantan
Misha at My First Book

   

21 comments:

  1. Does one's family count as a group in the study? My family is my biggest support group although I belong to other groups. I get the most support from my family. I realize this is not the case with everyone however.

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  2. I love the idea of a lunch/book group. :-)

    The A to Z has made me feel part of 'the Bloggers' as well. It's such a great community and I loved meeting other writers that way.

    And yes: chocolate! :-)

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  3. Great post! I belong to a critique group and believe what you say may be true. Good for you, finishing your story and sending it in. Good luck! I hope to be reading of an acceptance sometime soon.

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  4. Yay, thank you for the award!! And thank you for all your awesome comments on my blog! Right now I'm not part of a book club or writing group, so the blogger community is really important to me. Plus I just moved and left my neighborhood of 20 years, so yes I'm feeling a little isolated!

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  5. Hi Ros .. thanks so much for the award - it's a brilliantly coloured one .. and so kind of you to send it down south!

    Congratulations on your well deserved awards .. versatile certainly and sunflower coloured definitely!

    Groups - I guess if I'd had kids I'd have hit Committees a lot earlier - but my best times where when I was on the Chamber of Mines Squash Committee in Johannesburg for 4 years .. big club, loads of activity and I did the Summer League .. parties etc!! We had such fun and I'm still friends with many members -

    I can see the advantage of groups .. just by being a part of this blogging fraternity has been hugely helpful and supportive .. and encouraging me to write - when I've never done anything like it in my life.

    So - wonderful award you've given me and the other six bloggers - they so deserve it ..

    Thanks Ros so much .. and here's to the brilliant day we've got down here .. hope you've had some life-giving rain on the garden .. we haven't had much - but on the edge of the sea it's not surprising really .. cheers and big hug and thoughts .. Hilary

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  6. Thanks Rosalind! I must disagree with one of your 7 facts though - I absolutely adore mustard!!!

    Duncan In Kuantan

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  7. Your writing group sounds very much like the one I belong to. I don't know how I managed without it.

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  8. YY, groups vital. A sense of belonging is very important.

    @Sherri - I think good, close families definitely count!

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  9. I'd love to be part of an online writers group. I'll look out for one. Thanks for the idea!

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  10. Yay! A new award for me! Thanks so much! ^_^

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  11. Dear Rosalind, I like the book/lunch idea.
    Thank you for including me in your A-Z group. That means a lot to me because I'm not a writer but I love to hang out with writers. Sunflowers always fascinate me the way they all turn toward the sun. :)
    I admire your sense of brevity, where you can cut to the chase when needed, and still include all essential ingredients.
    Manzanita@Wannabuyaduck

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  12. Hi Sherri, I'm sure that family groups count just as much as other groups. I only wish my family lived closer.


    Hi KC, everyone should belong to a lunch/book group. It's great.


    Thanks Lisa, an acceptance would be good right now... or any time come to think of it!


    You're welcome, Karen. Moving to a new neighbourhood is never easy but after 20 years of being in one place it must feel so hard. Good luck with finding your way into your new local community. Maybe there's a group you could join!

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  13. Hi Hilary, is that committee for real? The Chamber of Mines Squash Committee! Amazing! And I'm so glad you're enjoying the Blogging community.


    Oh, Duncan! I don't understand. You like mustard?!? I can't even bear the smell of it.


    Hi Miriam, glad you've got a special group too. They're great, aren't they :-)


    Agreed, Clare, it's all about belonging. We're social animals after all.

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  14. Hi Suzanne, I don't know of any online writing groups that I can recommend. Might be worth giving a shout out on Twitter.


    You're welcome, Misha.


    Thanks, Manzanita, and you're welcome. Sunflowers are fascinating, aren't they!

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  15. Hi Ros, the lunch group sounds great, now I'm feeling a tad homesick!
    Loved your 7 things and importantly, wishing your good luck with your children's story...everything is crossed! x

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  16. Just stumbled on your blog and really enjoyed reading some of your articles. Love the book club over lunch with pot lunch. Congratulations on your Award. Since you belong to the "ladies who lunch" group - do visit my blog for some inspirational recipes.

    Mina from Http://www.givemesomespice.com

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  17. Oh how I long for a group like that. One to share your writing with, get input and support. How wonderful.

    Thank you so much for the lovely award. I enjoyed your company as we navigated the A-Z challenge.

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  18. congrats on your awards! I am looking for a new group to join in my neighborhood, it is great to have that support

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  19. If you've placed a comment on this blog post please don't think I've removed it. Blogger seems to have removed them all except for one. Hopefully they'll be back soon so many apologies and thank you for all your comments. They were very much appreciated.

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  20. Hi Sherri, I'm sure that family groups count just as much as other groups. I only wish my family lived closer.


    Hi KC, everyone should belong to a lunch/book group. It's great.


    Thanks Lisa, an acceptance would be good right now... or any time come to think of it!


    You're welcome, Karen. Moving to a new neighbourhood is never easy but after 20 years of being in one place it must feel so hard. Good luck with finding your way into your new local community. Maybe there's a group you could join!


    Hi Hilary, is that committee for real? The Chamber of Mines Squash Committee! Amazing! And I'm so glad you're enjoying the Blogging community.


    Oh, Duncan! I don't understand. You like mustard?!? I can't even bear the smell of it.


    Hi Miriam, glad you've got a special group too. They're great, aren't they :-)


    Agreed, Clare, it's all about belonging. We're social animals after all.

    Hi Suzanne, I don't know of any online writing groups that I can recommend. Might be worth giving a shout out on Twitter.


    You're welcome, Misha.


    Thanks, Manzanita, and you're welcome. Sunflowers are fascinating, aren't they!

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  21. Hi Ros .. yes it was an extremely successful squash club - the Chamber of Mines - was the admin body for the big mining houses - Anglo American, Gencor, AngloVaal, Rand Mines and two others .. and smaller - they administered the payrolls at the mines, the insurances - where I worked .. etc etc ..and obviously we had a huge number of members with wonderful facilities - fun times to be had by all!! When I left to return to England they closed it .. well that was the 'rumour' .. slight exageration!!

    Still it opened my eyes to working as team - as we organised the social side of the club, and the squash leagues etc .. I had the real fun - the summer league .. poolside and parties .. and lots of us!!

    Cheers .. and yes they did say they'd restore comments .. but so far not yet .. at least it's back?! .. Hilary

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