No man is an island, no matter how badly he wants to do everything his way. God created Adam and Eve for a reason. Then he told them to multiply. He didn’t want us to live solitary lives, and that doesn’t just mean personally. Professionally there are numerous benefits to getting off of our islands and mingling with others. Don’t just go out and look at people – make connections.
I could have waited for ‘N’ to come around and called this networking, but that word has a bit of a stigma to it. I used to associate networking with coffee drinking, suit wearing, take-no-prisoners business types. I know better now, but I think some people still misunderstand networking. That’s why we’re going to make connections.
Networking is absolutely a plus when trying to get published, but it helps to make connections early, and I’m not just talking about the agents and editors you’ll eventually work with. Some of the most helpful and influential people I’ve met are the writers who are just like me – trying to get it written and published. We encourage, challenge, critique, and celebrate with each other.
Start locally – go to your local bookstore and library to find book clubs and writer’s groups. Go online to look for regional, statewide, and national group, and don’t forget to be specific. The American Christian Fictions Writer’s Association is amazing, but not necessarily if you want to write a memoir. There are groups for children’s authors, romance writers, horror writers – find your people, and get connected!
These groups may not work for you, but here are some of the associations and conferences that have helped me make some important connections:
American Christian Writers Association (and conference)
American Christian Fiction Writers Association (and conference
QUESTION: How have you made your connections?