Tuesday, March 5, 2024


Ah……the wonders of aging. Seems that some things never change. When I first posted this piece, more than five years ago, I must have believed that “Dull” and “Insecure” described the ‘me’ I knew. And if that was true then, it is even truer today.

By nature I am not an overly social fellow.....most certainly not a ‘joiner.' Yet, after all these years I remain a member in good standing of both of the mentioned organizations……still striving to live up to their lofty goals.


It is amazing how things can change so quickly. There was a time a few years back when I was ready to fold my blogging tent. It felt like I had said everything I had to say. And who needs a blogger with nothing more to add?

Some of you had been following these posts for years, and I had come to sense that perhaps you too were growing a bit tired of it all. At that point, more than five years ago, it seemed like a good time to call it a day.

Then, scarcely a week after having made that decision, with a single mouse click I was unexpectedly transported to a very different set of possibilities. You may know how I am, selling the virtues of following the late-life road less traveled, reaching beyond our comfort zone……at an age when ‘less traveled’ and ‘reaching out’ are not always the norm. 

Like I said, I was rather fussy about who earned my allegiance. It had to be a fit……which is why one of my only affiliations (besides our church) has been my membership in The Dull Men’s Club.

That’s right. A club for ‘Dull Men.’ Take a moment to think about that. What adjective better describes a November fellow like me.....someone who writes relational novels about his late-life peers? 

Then, having established his ‘Dull’ credentials, what if that same aging storyteller found it awkward, even hard, to explain to the world why his October stories ought to be read? Could that mean he is perhaps a bit ‘Insecure?’ Generally speaking it felt like I was a reasonably secure guy. But when it came to talking about my stories, perhaps not so much. 

Surprise……it was about then that I learned there also is a club for Insecure Writers. And I immediately signed up for that. Think of that, I was now a member of two groups…..…Dull and Insecure. Was I on a roll or what? 

Chances are over the years you have read my nagging doubts about the stories I tell, and the way I tell them. You’ve perhaps seen me grumble that no one seems to care that those stories are out there waiting to be read, even though my modest Gil Stewart.com website is welcoming, and my Amazon Author's Page offers 24 books just waiting to be discovered. 

So it should not be surprising to learn that this newly discovered group of creative souls, who openly discuss their questions and insecurities about something as personal as their own writing experiences, has made me feel quite at home. My first visit to the Insecure Writers Support Group (IWSG) website convinced me I belonged there.

True, lots of my fellow ‘Insecure’ club member are kids……20s, 30s, and such……and most are women, which seems to be the norm for wannabe writers. If I was younger I might find that intimidating. But it seems that I’ve outgrown that sort of concern. 

To be sure, their stories are not at all likely to be the Geriatric Adolescence tales I tell. But it has been fun to read about the many paths they have followed on their creative journeys.

Yet no matter what their age or what they write, as I trolled through the member blogs, each of them linked in their own way to the same creative impulse that keeps pulling me along, it felt like I was eavesdropping on a family affair……the sort of clan I would like to be part of.

Truth to tell, at any age (even in late-life) unpublished or self-published writers are apt to find themselves in an insular space…..perhaps lacking the skills, resources, and/or the contacts to have their work refined and noticed. In a world where thousands of self-published stories are released every week.....Amazon claims to add two thousand titles every week.....it is easy to feel that even though we are creating something good, chances are no one will know about. That seems to me a likely recipe for writer insecurity.

IWSG’s stated purpose is very straight forward……to provide a format for writers to share our creative experiences, while encouraging those who have set out on that path. The goal is to provide a forum where writers feel comfortable asking questions, offering advice, and discussing the doubts and concerns they have about their craft…….i.e. a safe haven for insecure writers, no matter what they write. 

Finally, taken together it feels as though my dual memberships.....Dull and Insecure.....have helped provide the support I need, we all need, to deal with our late-life future. 

1 comment:

  1. For me I find I have no worries because I finally realized that all my sins were washed away and I look forward to the next life!