We started our accountability partner program at our January 2015 meeting and still continue to promote it. Although we have certain business to conduct during our meetings, it is amazing to see everyone talking to each other, exchanging information, and asking about the myriad of projects all of us are working on. It is so much better than watching people sit through a boring meeting then walk out the door, unfulfilled, never speaking to anyone. There’s an air of expectancy in the room.
For those of you who have not been to a meeting for a while, the accountability program is very simple. You team up with another NightWriter (or more) for 30 days. You connect with each other at least once a week, whether in person or via media, and talk about the projects you are working on, help each other over roadblocks, and offer assistance in whatever area your partner is struggling with. We have a number of members that live out of state or some distance from Tulsa and can’t come to meetings. You’ll need to make contact with other members and partner up with them. Your media will be the telephone, email, or whatever means y0u choose to communicate. If you’ll send an email to Julie Kimmel, she can send out a notice to the membership that you are looking for a partner. Our website has a list of everyone’s personal sites, so you should have no problem finding a partner. But come to the meetings and connect personally. It’s more fun that way.
This program works if you don’t get hung up on genre. There aren’t enough fiction writers among us to concentrate strictly on partnering with other fiction writers, or enough poets to concentrate strictly on poetry, etc. You must step out of your comfort zone and experience something new.
The purpose of the accountability program is to help each of us become better at our craft – writing. Our Vice-President, Donna Welch Jones takes great care to book speakers with the instruction to stay focused on the craft of writing. Marion Grace, our treasurer, manages our funds and membership roster as only she can. Our Hospitality Coordinator, Maggie Villines is the cheerful face of the NightWriters. And if you’ve been reading our monthly newsletter, you already know Julie Kimmel-Harbaugh creates exciting and informative newsletters as well as keep the lines of communication open within the club.
2016 was a good year, and 2017 is going to be exciting. We’ve got good things in the works. But remember, this isn’t a one-pony show. Let’s get together and see what great heights we can scale together.