#5: You can write outdoors year-round. Sure, it's hot in the summer, but all you really need is a tank top and some shade. An iced beverage helps, but is not essential.
#4: For various good reasons, Florida attracts vastly more than its demographic share of criminals, degenerates, and trashy imbeciles. Thus you need go no further than the radio, newspapers, and billboards to find terrific story fodder.
#3: Florida levies no state income tax, useful for when you become a multi-millionaire from your writing.
#2: Beta-testing your writing aloud is easy in Florida. Drive in any direction for five minutes and you will encounter an assisted-living facility. Walk in, find the rec room, and start reading. You will have an attentive audience. If you actually do get feedback, it'll be honest.
#1: The state has wonderful groups and organizations for writers, especially the Florida Writers Association. The first time I went to the annual FWA conference I was a presenter—and a stranger. Afterward, I had new friends. Most of all, I was impressed by the we-are-all-cheerleaders-for-one-another spirit I found there.
Tomorrow and Saturday I'll be presenting at FWA's mini-conference in Bradenton, as will other experienced workshoppers from around the state. Gobs of aspiring writers will be there! If you stop by, I bet you'll make friends too.
[Photo of lonely beach by ES]
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