My best writing friends have come out of situations when I’ve just said yes. Yes, complete stranger, I’ll go out on a limb and show you my latest work in a coffee shop and talk to you about yours. Yes, stranger who I mistook for someone I went to college with, I’ll keep talking to you about dictionaries and weird poetry facts that only both of us seem to know. Lifetime friendships? I couldn’t have guessed.
It continues to surprise me, too, how much sheer tenacity pays off in growing the communities you want. If you can’t find what you need, it’s likely that other people can’t either. Part of the reason I started The Reading was because I kept having the same conversations with other writers about difficult questions I had as an artist, like: how would I know I was good enough, or when should I leave my job to work full-time, or is there a time when I should just give up?