I recently attended a one day editing workshop with Nottingham Writers' Studio. It did remind me of being back at school - notebook at hand, notes written on a board, raising a hand to speak and listening to 'sir.' I must say I enjoyed it far more than school!
A writer never stops learning and I found it enormously helpful. One exercise was to edit some of our work by changing the way in which we'd written it. For example, change the tense, swap from 3rd to 1st person, exchange each verb with a different one. I did try this exercise, and was pleased to find that the initial way I'd written it, appeared to work the best.
Another reason I'd urge writers to join writing groups and attend workshops, is friendship with like-minded people. Although your loved ones are thrilled with your successes, they don't always 'get it.' My best friend is delighted for me, but has never asked to read my book; in fact, she doesn't read at all, bar the odd magazine!
So I made new freinds and chatted about writing, blogging etc without a glazed expression sliding over fellow writers eyes. Now I'm looking forward to the next social at the writing club on Thursday. A glass of wine and more book talk!