“Stories have a way of changing faces. They are unruly things, undisciplined, given to delinquency and the throwing of erasers. This is why we must close them up into thick, solid books, so they cannot get out and cause trouble.”
― Catherynne M. Valente

As I've read and observed professional writing communities, I've found a common thread that disturbs me: it's the word “qualified.”

What qualifies me to write what I'm writing?
What qualifies you to tell anyone else how to write what they're writing?

How does my work qualify for publishing?

Henceforth, I strip this word of value anywhere in the vicinity of Les Conteurs. Qualification is not what we are after.

We are after the wild creature inside of us — the one that bubbles up in bizarre places with a narrative behind every curtain and peeking around every corner, running back into the enchanted forest before we have a chance to ask it its name. We are not masters of qualification: we are tamers of dragons.

Les Conteurs is a Birmingham, Alabama based writing collective geared to provide both a place for professional writing commentary and a community for the nurturing of the creative lifestyle. Should you find yourself chasing a story of any variety or significance, your place is at our table. We meet once a week to write together, talk through and workshop our current creative projects. If that interests you, click here or visit our Workshop page to learn more about getting involved.

- Megan Beam
May 2017

Learn more about Megan here.