It’s Our Birthday!

The Beginning

On Feb 19, 2013 the Eastside Writing Room launched. Since moving to Tucson in 2009 I wanted to recreate the writing “space” I experienced in New Jersey  for over 10 years with Scriveners Writers. A place to gather for the energy that I always found came from gatherings of people with common goals.

Our goal- to write- without interruption, without distractions. For busy people, we found it helps to get away from the distractions of home and home responsibilities. Committing to meet with someone else is an extra insurance that I’ll do what I promise. Scriveners helped me accomplished my goal of completing, publishing and marketing my first book, Thinking of Miller Place.

On that February 19, I met with one other writer. We shared our intention for that day and wrote for two hours. I felt so accomplished! We met again in March and April and then went to once a week every Tuesday. Gradually our membership grew. Each Tuesday writers show up- enough to fit around the dining room table.

Why an Eastside Writing Room?

After calculating the time I was taking to drive to and from various writing groups in Tucson, I realized I could be using that time to write. Yet I wanted the company of writers. A wise person told me, “If you don’t find the book you want to read, write it yourself.” Why not with a meeting? If you don’t find the meeting that fits for you, start one of your own. The Eastside Writing Room attracts folks who live on the Eastside of Tucson and can get to the host house in 15 minutes or less. We have no geographical limits but most live pretty close to the host homes. Penelope Starr commuted for quite a few months before she said, “I’m going to start a downtown Tucson group.” And she did

We’ve been virtual since April 2020 and will continue weekly Zooming until the pandemic safety level is reached.

What We’re About

Gradually our group has grown – our mailing list is about 30 and attendees are regulars, returnees and occasional drop-ins. There’s an ebb and flow of members. There’s also no fee, no critiques, no interruptions, no cell phones. Just a quick share of writing news, kudos, suggestions, and then writing.


Meeting and writing each Tuesday often inspired writing all that day and the next day, and knowing I have a weekly commitment to write. Seedings, Stories of Relationships was one of the results of this weekly writing. Inclusions in anthologies. writing speeches for public speaking, stories for Odyssey Storytelling and tellers of Tales, some weeks doing the paperwork “business of writing” were others.  Eastside members can list their accomplishments too.


So now we are 8! At our Tuesday, Feb. 23 Zoom, we’ll celebrate our birthday, share accomplishments, light a candle, state writing intentions, and go off to write. All adult writers are welcome at our virtual Eastside Writing Room. Contact Ethel.

Happy birthday, Eastside Writing Room!

Smiling behind my mask

Ethel Lee-Miller blogs regularly about people, the power of words, and the writing life. She’s retired from professional writing gigs after 30 years of teaching, coaching, editing, and gathering writers to publicly share their work. She is the author of Thinking of Miller Place, and Seedlings, Stories of Relationships. In retirement she writes to inspire, to connect with folks, and for the pure enjoyment of it. Ethel enjoys sharing stories at Odyssey Storytelling, Zoom gatherings, and anywhere there’s a Zoom mic.