The Salon


I don't know what I imagined the life of a writer would be like, but it involved hanging out with other writers.

I love talking to other writers.

I love talking to them about what their writing, what they're reading, and what they're thinking about. To be fair, I love talking to lots of other people about the second and third items.

When I used to write for various publishers I imagined there would be an online salon where we would gather and talk about these things. Particularly when I worked for publishers who specialized in technology, I thought that authors groups would be talking about what's coming in technology and what they were experimenting with.

I had the same experience before I became a teacher. As a student I wondered what went on in the teacher's lounge.

When I first became a teacher, the teacher's lounge was a place where the teachers could smoke cigarettes without the students seeing them. I didn't smoke, but I never minded that my colleagues did. At one point a group of teachers decided the teachers' lounge should be a non-smoking room and that somewhere else - way on the third floor - there could be a smoking lounge. I discovered that most of my friends were smokers and once they left the lounge to go to their private smoking closet, I spent more time in the math office.

Several publishers I've worked for have authors' mailing lists.

The last house I worked for started one and I was so excited. I loved the work of so many of these people and was friends with a bunch of them. I couldn't wait to see what the mailing list would become.

Sadly it was one question after another about how to format this and how to make the production tools do that.

I have friends who write books and we email or talk in person. It's been great. One of my favorite author friends died earlier this year. Our conversations were all I ever looked for in a salon.

Now I'm back to searching.