Word Nerds

Four or five years ago a small group of friends discovered a common interest – writing – and formed a weekly writing group. The only other thing we had in common was the love of bacon. Crispy bacon. The kind of bacon that lays absolutely flat on the plate with no bubby gristle eyes staring up. What’s that got to do with writing? Not much except we found the perfect bacon at a little place called Café Linger; a place that also had a table big enough to hold us four women and our laptops and Ticonderoga pencils and other tools of the trade, and they didn’t care if we stayed all morning.

The first thing we had to do was pick a name for our club. Oh, we came up with some good ones, but most of them couldn’t be spoken aloud in fine company. “Word Nerds” seemed safe and appropriate. All four of us love words:  their origin, their meaning, their use. We set rules at first.  Be on time, limit chat time to 30 minutes, share the chocolate chip cookie.

Since the beginning we have bent the rules on occasion. We allow time to discuss personal crises, gripes, plots of our favorite streaming series and naturally, books. If discussion gets out of control the boss will reign us all back in. Thank goodness we have someone who can do that without offense. And we appreciate being directed back to our stated task.

Two of the women have published work. One (I’ll call her Ms. X) is working on a mystery that she better finish before I lose my marbles. I have even saved a space on my bookshelf for her book in progress. Frankly, she was not happy with the space I saved – between a WWII epic and a book by right wing political commentator Bill O’Reilly “Who Killed…” book (kidding!!). Ms. X has been excused from bacon in the last couple of years. After a fight with cancer she has gone vegan. In my mind there is no such thing as vegan bacon. She doesn’t even seem to miss it – which I completely do not understand. Have to say she looks good without consuming bacon. Has the skin of 30 year old. I hate her.

Another woman (Ms Y) has a blog that is geared toward women 60+. Even though I’m in the ++ stage, “Be Brave Lose the Beige” always strikes a chord with me and, unfortunately, often finds me as a bad example of something or other. Friend Y has written a book that will be published/released (also called “Be Brave Lose the Beige) next Spring. Get in line now to buy it because it’s gonna be a best seller. You should see the cover – amazing colors. And the author photo on the back flap is worth the price of the book. I didn’t even know Annie Leibowitz was in town. I have not yet been asked to write a blurb, so there’s that.

Friend Z has the best giggle of the gang. Every meeting it is my goal to make her laugh out loud. She is a deep thinker who asks probing questions and writes poems that are of the moment and from the heart. I think she is the spiritual soul of the group. Ms. Z values connections and reminds us to be thoughtful and caring and loving. I have a long way to go but I appreciate the hippie vibes she sends out.

I entered this group cautiously because what I do is write an occasional blog when I feel particularly moved by something. In my mind I have a NYT-length list of subjects I’d like to write about. Lately I’ve taken an interest in creating mixed media abstract art in a journal. Mostly I like to go to Sam Flax and buy stuff.  Do you know how many cool markers there are out there?!  And paints? Neon paint – I love it!!  Even with my latest fetish, my friends still let me attend Word Nerds. Actually, they can’t let me leave.  I know too much.

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