Our story

When our writers’ group formed in 1994, most of us were making our livings doing commercial writing, editing, and teaching. Yet we all yearned to do more creative work. One of our founding members, Marilyn Colter, was writing a manual about slow sand filtration systems. We saw a metaphoric connection between water filtering through sand and the lengthy process of distilling one’s writing, so we called our group the Slow Sanders.

Slow sand filtration in Warsaw. Creative commons by Jakub Bulas.


Writing is done in solitude. But refining one’s work doesn’t have to be. We believe it shouldn’t be.

For a few hours every other Tuesday evening, we gather to share our trials, celebrate our successes, critique one another’s work, and sometimes deliver good, swift kicks. We trade honest feedback, editorial suggestions, line edits, and marketing ideas.

This group has been a lifeline. We have learned from one another, strengthened our writing, and persisted in this sometimes difficult profession, knowing we had the unfailing support of our fellow members. Despite our distinct writing styles and penchants for either fiction or nonfiction, we find common ground in our love for the craft of writing.

Since our first meeting, scores of our short stories and personal essays have been published in respected journals, leading national magazines, and literary anthologies. We’ve won state and national writing awards, fellowships for both fiction and nonfiction, and have had books published.

How have we gotten so much done? Together.