Author Toni Morrison once said, "If there's a book you really want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it."
There's a group in the Lake Norman area who takes that quote seriously.
The Charlotte Writer's Club North is composed of novelists, poets, lyricists, reporters and everything in between. What they all have in common is a love of words, and they gather at Sanctuary in Davidson on the first Thursday of each month to share that passion.
"I feel that we are a stimulus for creative events for the northern end of the county," said board member, former president and Davidson resident Tony Abbott.
Charlotte Writer's Club was founded by A.L. Kimball and began meeting back in 1922. It serves as a creative environment where people can gather, share and support each other's talents.
However, it was difficult for Lake Norman residents to make the trek to the SouthPark meeting place each month, so three years ago they formed the satellite group CWC-North to better serve local writers.
The endeavor proved to be a success.
"By doing this, I feel we've virtually doubled the size of the organization, with about 25-30 people at each meeting," said Abbott.
Each meeting features a regional writer, usually one who's been recently published. Recent highlights have included Dorothy Allison, 2009 McGee professor, writer in residence at Davidson College, and author of books such as "Bastard out of Carolina" and "Cavedweller" and Mooresville playwright, performer and arts facilitator Marla Brown. Each meeting includes discussion, conversation and an accessibility to writers one might not normally experience.
The speakers differ each month to cover the wide spectrum of writing.
Upcoming programs include Pat Reviere-Seel, poet and author of "The Serial Killer's Daughter," and Rand Brandes, coordinator of the "In Their Own Works" visiting writers series.
The group also provides support, workshops, contests and the chance to join various writing groups.
Abbott is a poet who recently published his fifth book of poems. He describes it as "emotional, passionate poetry about what it means to be a human being." "New and Selected Poems 1989-2009" is a retrospect of his works over the last decade.
A Davidson resident since 1964, Abbott served as a chair of the English department and director of creative writing at Davidson College. His life changed dramatically when he lost his 10-year-old daughter in 1967.
"I had no language for my emotions, and I didn't know how to have grief," Abbott said. "Poetry became an emotional release, a way of helping me relate meaningfully to other people, and the language I used to talk about my daughter."
This latest book is dedicated to her memory.
CWC-North welcomes everyone, whether new to the area or new to writing.
"We're looking to be available to people who need us and give them a group that can be a support," Abbott said.