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Who are we?

No one gave us permission to be here.

We’re Inkwells and Anvils. Eight amateur writers who are dedicated to honing our craft, chatting about that journey, and bringing any willing passengers along for the ride. (You’re here willingly, right? No one is forcing you to be here? Blink twice if you need help.) We wanted to have conversations about writing and we wanted to share it with you.

The eight of us, from various parts of the world and different walks of life, are all part of the Wordsmiths, a critique group for Catholic writers who want to create art that is good, true, and beautiful. By no means are we the only people attempting to do this. I know there are other groups out there who are striving to contribute to the long history of humans joining into the creative spirit of God. So what makes us different? What do we have to say that will add to the conversation about art?

Well, we’re amateurs, so anything we’re writing or saying comes from the origin of that word: amare, love. We’re here for the love of writing and stories. We were bitten by that bug— that passion to etch out our own stories— and have been consumed by it ever since. “The good, the true, and the beautiful” are the traditional transcendentals many philosophers associate with aspects of God. I think many times when someone hears them, they get an image of high art, those esoteric books that rise high above the paperback fodder of the masses. Whether intentional or not, “the good, the true, and the beautiful” tends to evoke a sense of elitism. But we don’t think it has to. These aspects of art that can draw us closer to God shouldn’t be reserved for those smart enough. We want to create and discuss stories that can strike a person’s heart, but are still accessible to the ordinary person.

We believe this because we’re part of those ordinary masses. We’re lovers of what some might consider the common media. We’re obsessed with Marvel and musicals, fans of fantasy and sci-fi, viewers of T.V. shows and YouTube DND campaigns. Certain members' eyes light up at the mention of anime and video games. Others can't wait to tell you about Egyptian mythology, or others, their love of Appalachian eldritch folklore. There is seemingly no end to our nerdiness.

And because we’re Catholics, we also wanted a place where we could bring that aspect of our lives into our conversations about writing. Our faith is imbued in everything we do, saturating what we write. It is what drives us to write. However, the larger world is often not welcoming to people of faith. We’re not trying to play the victim card. But the reality is that the secular culture has a blind spot toward those who believe in God. If it's not hostile, it very often is an attitude of, “Your religion is fine as long as you keep it to yourself.” But we don’t want to keep quiet. Instead of complaining about it, we’re making our own space. A space for Jesus loving nerds who won’t settle for mediocrity. A place where we get to gush about our favorite stories, dissect the writing process, rant about an abominable adaptation, all through a Catholic lens.

Instead of waiting to be invited to the table, we made our own. Instead of waiting for the culture to be more kind to those of faith, we’re stepping forward. Instead of waiting until we’re perfect, published writers with contracts and accolades, we’re putting our thoughts out there now. Our lives are too short to keep waiting for any of that.

So we’re not waiting. We’re not asking for permission. We’re doing it ourselves and we’re going to have a blast doing it. With our eyes on heaven, we’re making art for the regular reader. And we’re inviting you along for the ride.

Come along!

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Feb 23, 2023

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Jan 24, 2023

This is lovely. I'm so excited to see where this goes!! 😊✨

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