Susan Terkel describes herself as well-traveled. Every time she visits a new state, she beelines for the same place first - a public library.
"I have a library card in San Francisco and one in Portland, Oregon," said Terkel, a resident of Hudson, Ohio. "But Margate Library is my favorite library."
Terkel's parents live in the area, and she has a cousin who lives close to Lucy the Elephant, so when she visits, Terkel still goes to the Margate library. Earlier this year, Terkel was put in touch with Margate resident Biff Price, who proposed an initiative for the library.
Price's idea was a writer's support group, and library director James Cahill and librarian Gwen Meade loved the idea.
"People always say, 'Someday I'll write a book,' and they don't mean it," Price said. "So when somebody says that to me, I say, 'When are you going to begin?'"
Terkel and Price collaborated on the best route to take, and both were well-qualified. Terkel said she has both been in and started multiple writing groups, while Price belonged to the same writing group for 10 years before he relocated to Margate.
The group is for anyone and everyone who has an appreciation for writing. All skill levels and genres are accepted and welcome. The idea is to offer support, ideas and positive feedback.
"The thing about writing is, writers work by themselves all day long putting words on paper, so it's really important for them to socialize," Terkel said. "I always think of myself as a cheerleader to give someone incentive to finish a project, and that's what I think this (group) can do."
Librarian Gwen Meade said she believes the formation of the group is a progressive step in the evolution of libraries, which are no longer merely for checking out books but have developed into cultural centers where multitudes of resources are utilized.
"Libraries are now centers of technology and culture and local interest," Meade said. "We're just glad to be able to put this together and offer it to interested writers."
The support group also will educate attendees about different options for publishing work. Price said that in publishing today, there are a myriad of routes to take, whether it be self-publishing online or traditional publishing with an agent and a publishing house.
"The purpose of the group is not to find work for people," Price said. "It's more to examine the world of writing and the things that go on within it so people will understand how they fit in."
The group will meet on the second Tuesday of every month from 6 to 8 p.m.
Contact Devin Loring:
If you go
'First Draft' Writers Support Group
Second Tuesday of every month.
Margate Library meeting room, 8100 Atlantic Ave., Margate.
Writers are welcome to share a sample of their work. Please bring a maximum of six double-spaced typed pages. All genres welcome.