Writers in the Storm

A blog about writing

storm moving across a field
September 27, 2019

The Hardest Goodbye


I looked it up. This blog was born in April of 2010, when our critique group sat in Charla Rae’s office and came up with the crazy idea of a blog to help writers improve their craft and not feel so alone, working in solitude. We’ve posted three times a week since then and have been quoted, reblogged, and received awards. Members of the group came and went, but WITS has remained. 

This, I hope, will always be true. 

But it’s time for me to move on. I love this place, and all of you, but I’ve come to realize that I’ve said everything I have to say. I’ll still be writing, and learning.  I’ll still be around — I’ll see you in the comments, and I’ll be blogging on WITS once a quarter. I’m not sure what will be next for me, but I’ll let you know.

If you want to stay in touch, friend me on Facebook HERE, or sign up for my quarterly newsletter HERE.

In the meantime, I hope you continue to enjoy and support WITS — with new blood, it’s likely to be even BETTER!

I thought I’d leave you (for now) with my top 5 favorite blogs of all time here on WITS. And since you know I’m the writer's cheerleader-in-a-too-tight-skirt, they’re inspirational:

Not saying goodbye — just so long for now. See you down the writing road!


I remember the night we decided to start a writer's blog. We spent a good deal of time trying to agree on a name. When I suggested Writers in the Storm, some asked if that was a Doors song. “If we change a couple of words,” I answered. Laura liked the idea because the publishing industry was in turmoil and the climate of the industry was like a storm. Someone shortened it to WITS, which we all liked a lot.

It’s hard to believe that was almost ten years ago. All I wanted to do was survive learning how to write and post blogs. I knew nothing about “connecting” electronically with anyone. But Jenny said we needed to start WITS as a platform for all of us. I wasn’t sure what that meant, but everyone else seemed to think that was important, so I went along.

I must thank all of you for reading my early-years posts, from the very early posts about my travels (From the Safari Journal) to the only writing craft topic I felt competent to blog about: a three-part world building series beginning with World-Building: Part 1 - Physical Setting to throwdowns with Laura, this one is my favorite on Inspiration vs. Perspiration in Writing.

Your comments and support helped me grow as a blogger, as well as become more confident in my writing skills so that I could offer 5 Conflict-making Choices Characters Can Make and career insights like 7 Tips to "Level Up" Your Writing Career.

Writers in the Storm has grown to something I never believed possible, and it’s because of you, our readers. I know you will understand when I share with you that it is time for me to concentrate on my own writing career now. I have to master marketing like I did blogging. I have to devote more time to writing my books. I have to “level up” my writing game by taking more intensive classes. 

All this is going to take a huge chunk of time, and though I’ve studied a lot of physics, I can’t create an hour like I can create a batch of chocolate chip cookies, so I’ve been looking at what needed to change. Writers in the Storm takes up three full months of my writing time a year, and that is time I need to reclaim.

I won’t be a stranger. I’ll still be reading and responding when I have something to say, even though I’ll be more in “lurk” mode. And I’ll keep you up on what I’m learning during the year with new posts.

This is a sad time (goodbyes are really hard for me), but it is time for me to let Writers in the Storm sail on without me as part of the crew. You can keep in touch with me at my website or email (fae@faerowen.com) or Facebook. You know I’ll be watching you and your writing progress. Share those successes as well as the tougher writing times. We’re all this boat together.

About Laura & Fae

They've been with Writers in the Storm from the beginning, they are lovely people, and they write fantastic books. What else do you need to know?

97 comments on “The Hardest Goodbye”

  1. I'm close to tears reading your goodbye column. You've been so inspirational. I've passed your blog to my own writing tribe many times because I found it so helpful. I already sent my friend request, Laura, and noted Fae's website. Thank you and best of luck to you.

    1. Oh my gosh Mary, thank you! We do this, and send it out to the ether, but we don’t know what difference it makes. Thanks for letting us know. Best to you!

    2. Thank you, Mary, and thanks for taking the steps to keep in touch. There's still more exciting stuff to be had here at WITS—and to share on Laura and my "different" journeys.

  2. I'm so sorry to hear you're leaving, Laura and Fae. Thank you for your many inspiring, funny, smart, relatable posts. I wish you all the best!

    1. Thank you, Lori. May I say that I love your choice in adjectives? Don't worry—we'll both be blogging here four times a year, so that's eight posts between us!

  3. Though I rarely comment, I am a faithful reader and have enjoyed your columns immensely over the years. I will miss you. Thank you for all you have done to support writers.

    1. Thank you for commenting today, Vicky. It's always heart-filling to receive the love for my efforts.

  4. I haven't been reading Writers In The Storm very long, but long enough to fall in love. Thank you so much for your contribution. I wish all the best for you on your next journey.

    1. Thank you so much, Terrie. I'm sure there will be plenty here in the months and years ahead to keep you in love...and to grow your writing craft.

  5. I discovered WTS several years ago and it’s become a staple in my writing journey. It’s one of a handful of sites I always read and always share. I hate to see two of the foundation stones step back, but that too, is part of the mentoring/teaching you’re giving us. I wish you all the best and look forward to what comes next here at WTS and for you both!

    1. Thank you, Edie. Though it was hard to make the decision (Laura and I came to the same decision without discussion with the other), I know that WITS will continue with an infusion of new ideas and writing that will give all of us a boost.

  6. Aw, man! I hate good-byes. Thank you for all the work you've put into this blog, and for your promise to stay in touch. I'll be watching for you both!

    1. Thank you, crbwriter, for your kind wishes. I'm busy with a production schedule that should have me publishing three new books in the next twelve months. At over four-hundred pages a book, that's a lot of typing!

  7. You ladies will be missed! I've enjoyed your posts, and I have learned a lot and have appreciated the writing/editing reminders that you've shared over the years. All the best with whatever you do next!

    1. As a lifelong teacher, Sharon, nothing is sweeter music to my ears than hearing that I've helped someone learn. Thank you!

  8. Oh my gosh! Both of you!! You'll be missed greatly. I can't imagine this blog without you. But I do know where to find you, so I'll hunt you down if necessary. I imagine the time you put into this, will now go into other writing endeavors. Good luck to both of you. See you on down the road.

    1. Don't worry, Tari! We're geographically close enough that we'll be seeing each other. Thanks for the "hunt you down" sentiments!

    2. Right? Julie and I tried to talk them into staying, but alas... Thank God for phones, email and Facebook so I don't go into withdrawals. There will be a few new faces at WITS, starting in October. One writes historicals and other other is a ghostwriter. So, more fun to be had, but I will still miss sharing the behind-the-scenes with Laura and Fae. 🙂

  9. You guys will be missed. I've been a followers of WITS from nearly the beginning, and it's always been one of my favorite blogs. Best of luck to both of you on whatever you do next. HUGE HUGS!

    1. It was such a great time to meet you at the California Dreaming' conference earlier this year, Janice! Yours is a great blog (Fiction University for those of you who don't already read it) and I always can mine your articles for wonderful tips. Thank you!

    1. Thank you, Kathleen. I think this is where I should say what all pilots say after touchdown: "Thank you for choosing us. We know you have other choices..."

  10. Thank you both for the wonderful posts. WITS is the only blog I regularly read and it's been so helpful in my writing journey. You'll be missed! Wishing you all the best.

  11. Both of you have been an inspiration for so many through your columns - I'm sorry to see you go but applaud your decision to dedicate more time to your art. The idea of saying no to something you love doing and dedicated so many years to must have been incredibly hard. No matter who the new bloggers are, please know you two will be missed

    1. Thanks so much, Maggie. I've appreciated your comments through the years—and this one in particular. Laura will write four blogs a year, as will I, so you won't have to miss us too much!

    2. This has been a decision I knew was coming for two years, Maggie. But it took SOooooo long to let go! Until I realized, no one is getting away from me!

  12. Y'all know how I feel about this! I'm excited, though, to see where your careers go from here, with more time to dedicate to it and all you've built here and elsewhere. You've been fantastic mentors, and I know you will continue to be, just in a different way.

    Wishing you all the best, and you'll be welcome back here anytime. (In fact, either of you want to take my next hostess month? Just kidding.) Big hugs to you both!

    1. You were such a great addition to WITS, Julie! I have to publicly thank you for being my tech go-to for posting problems. I'll be watching the success of your "shared author" series and your own books as well.

  13. I've been a fan for many years. While I am sad to see you move on, I know you need to fly. Take to the breeze and enjoy every moment.
    Award-winning author of A Keeper's Truth

  14. 10,000 thank-yous are coming your way, Laura and Fae. Your encouragement and guidance has been a candle in the window for this weary writer traveling an often challenging road.

    I'm a horrible goodbye person. Always have been. Always will be. When non-passengers could go up to the boarding gates in airports way back when, I used to cry with young lovers and old grandparents that I'd never known and would never know. So "see you later" is my best replacement for the "g" word.

    So, Laura and Fae, see you later.

  15. All the very best, Laura and Fae. Many thanks for sharing your wisdom and wits. I've only followed the blog for a short-ish time but found it invaluable. (I was hooked by the Doors association - Riders on the Storm is a favourite number.)

    1. Yes, Roland, the "Crystal Ship" is one of my all-time favorite songs. Thank you for your "invaluable" recommendation. I had hoped that maybe one day I could get there with my posts.

  16. I'm not gonna lie...I bawled like a baby when Laura said she was retiring from full-time at WITS. Then Fae chimed in and I had to go lay down. It's amazing what we have built here, the three of us from the beginning and all the wonderful team members along the way. Thank God Julie is still here to keep me company and engage in behind-the-scenes shenanigans.

    I will miss the daily/weekly chats, calls and emails zinging back and forth about all things WITS. So be sure to send me emails about other things as your careers skyrocket. It's gonna be amazing. 🙂

  17. Laura and Fae, I have a notebook full of your posts and refer back to them regularly. Looking forward to the eight promised yearly. I might have to start another binder! Best wishes in your endeavors and we know where to find you!

    1. M. Lee, thank you for sharing that you've printed and saved my posts in your binder. I am honored—and humbled— to know that my advice has been that meaningful to you. Don't worry, there will be plenty of posts to come. I will be blogging twice on my website every week—once on the writer "side" and once on the reader "side."

  18. So sorry to see you go - I've looked forward and enjoyed your posts but more importantly your POV for writers. I especially enjoyed the launch of your video blogs. What a fine sense of humor you are blessed with.Wishing you the inspiration down the road you've managed to give all of your dedicated followers.

    1. Awwww, Christine, I don't watch those, because it's embarrassing what a dork I am - but if they've helped you, it's all worth it. Thanks for letting me know.

    2. I got to film Laura in one of those vlogs, Christine, and I'm going to talk her into doing another one this fall when we get together. Look for it!

  19. I don't know when I started following your blog, but it has been a bright and shining star in the blogs I follow. Thank you for starting this, and it's sad to see you go. Another way to look at it, though, is that you've graduated from here. Bright Blessings on your endeavors going forward. -tc

    1. Thanks for the graduation reference, Tom. It reminds me that when I decided that I'd taught high school for "enough" years, I announced my "graduation." My students got a kick out of how long it took me to "graduate" from high school.

    1. No worries, Annette. You'll hear from each of us four times a year. I hope I have lots of new adventures to share—writing, travel, and fun!

  20. I'm mostly a lurker here, but would like you both to know how much I enjoy your posts-whether informational or inspirational, or both, they're always entertaining. I'm already looking forward to your quarterly posts (and I thank you for not cutting us off cold-turkey). I'm sending my best wishes with you for your continued writing success and for finding all possible happiness in new worlds of words.

    1. Thanks for the good wishes, CK. As I immerse myself deeper into the worlds of the science fiction realm, I'll make notes to let you know how those worlds are working out, what I'm learning, and to share the fun with you in my quarterly posts.

  21. I'm mostly a lurker as well, but I so appreciate everything you have given to this blog and this community over the years. I don't even remember when I joined, but I know that I look forward to these posts. It's a lot of work regularly contributing to something like this and I so appreciate the energy and inspiration and wise words you both have poured into this project. Grateful you'll be popping up to post every once in a while and that you're also wise enough to recognize you need a break. Hugs to you both! Thank you!

    1. Thank you, Rachel. It was a very difficult decision, feeling at first like abandoning a baby on the side of the road. But Writers in the Storm has been "all grown up" for years now, and there are a lot of contributors with wise words to share. Thank you for your praise of our efforts.

    1. Denise, you've been one of our most faithful commenters. Thank you! The teacher-part of me is high-fiving you for letting me share my "lessons" with you. You've taken them and run with the information. A teacher's dream!

  22. Nooo! Laura and Fae, I can’t believe I won’t be seeing regular posts from both of you—I’ve enjoyed every word you have shared. But I understand that you deserve time of your own. I will miss your regular doses of writing wisdom (and snark?). Thank you both for the gift of your time and knowledge.

    1. No worries, Barb! Next Wednesday I've got a post going up about character traits and backstory. And I'll be adding to the WITS archives four times in 2020, as will Laura. Thank you for your generous praise —"I’ve enjoyed every word you have shared."—Ten years ago I would never have believed someone would say that about what little I had to share about writing.

    2. Thank you, Barb. You proved our point, that WITS achieved what we set out to do, all those years ago - we made a difference in writer's lives! It's one of the things I'm most proud of.

      Write on!

  23. Gosh, guys! Ditto on what the overwhelming responses say! If I don't see you in person soon, I'll see you on Facebook! The best to both of you. You deserve everything good that life has to offer! Love ya!

    1. Thanks so much, Barb. I always enjoy seeing that there is a comment from you here, whether it's on one of my blogs or on someone else's. I'll see you at the Birthday Bash soon!

  24. Thank you both for your years of dedication. This is my fave writers' blog; I've been fortunate to contribute a few posts, and count you both as friends in the writer community forever. Keep riding, Laura! And Fae, just keep being you. Hugs.

    1. Thanks, Ann. Though we haven't met, I feel an affinity for you since I asked you to blog with us here at WITS. We're all lucky to have shared part of our journeys together.

  25. This is a tough one to swallow. You've both such an inspiration and will be greatly missed. Thanks for sharing your trials, tribulations, and wisdom with the writing community.

    1. You have been such a dependable, steady commenter, Eldred, and I appreciate how you expanded my posts into something more. Don't worry, I'll still be around to share my trials and tribulations. I think there will be a lot as I begin, again, on the low-end of a learning curve in this stormy writing industry.

  26. Shamelessly, I’ve been a lurker. But I have to say how much I’m going to miss both of you and your unbelievable wealth of craft knowledge and encouragement. Y’all are going to be missed! ❤️

    1. I'll be around, too, Karen...more as a lurker, probably. There's a lot more to learn about my craft and I know, for sure, that this is a great place to learn about writing!

  27. Thank you both for giving so much of your time and effort to helping all of us become better writers....all the best!!

  28. It has taken me a while to process this. First, I want to say thank you to you both for wonderful essays. I've saved many of them; now I wish I'd saved more. You have helped to build a writing community that is without equal. Thank you, thank you.

  29. Weirdly, it's taken me a few days to wrap my head around this. How can people that we've never met in the flesh have such a big impact on us? I am reeling a bit, even now, but I'm so grateful for all the information and inspiration you've shared and I know that even more success is waiting for you, where ever your journey takes you. Sending you both love and best wishes.

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