Writing is not a traditional career path. The course writers take in pursuit of their passion is often unclearly marked, winding, and, at points, precarious. The only way for many to clear the path to becoming an author is with drive and determination.
There are, of course, other elements that contribute to a writer’s success. Beyond education and practice, there is the support of friends and family. It’s an important component when considering that this particular profession is unpredictable, at best.
Many writers will toil, trying again and again to succeed in a field that is saturated with others trying to do the same. Failed attempts (even if self-perceived) to become accomplished in such a competitive and challenging line of work can cause some writers to feel inadequate.
A means for writers to overcome these feelings and maintain the discipline to continue writing is by surrounding themselves with those who will serve as a buttress against the criticism and rejection.
If, as a writer, you are fortunate enough to have friends and/or family who provide this support then you understand its significance. If you haven’t experienced this emotional encouragement, however, take heart. Friends and family aren’t the only source of support. In fact, they aren’t even the most important.
The most significant resource a writer has is other writers.
Unfortunately, many writers avoid their professional peers because they unintentionally overlook the value of befriending other writers.
So if you are a writer who has, for whatever, reason avoided forming a relationship with other writers, here are 5 reasons why you NEED other writers.
Connections: Getting to know other writers puts you in contact with people you many not have otherwise known. These people may be agents, editors, book cover designers, or even more writers. Each connection is a link into a larger network, creating a system that facilitates the steps to your success.
Information: Other writers are a great source of information. Talking to others in your field enables you to get advice, recommendations, and resources that can help you in various facets of your writing career, including but not limited to submissions, editorial process, and marketing.
Marketing: Many writers are told to avoid other writers when marketing and instead focus on readers. Sound advice but other writers’ contribution to your marketing efforts shouldn’t be overlooked. Many writers are happy to spread the word about your work. The bonus being that they also have a network of followers and/or readers. Of course, it is only good manners to reciprocate.
Support: Who best knows the difficulty of being a writer? A writer, of course. Being able to commiserate, celebrate and share with others who intimately know the highs and lows of this field is not only important, it is essential.
Friendship: Writing is a very solitary career. And although your fictional characters may keep you company, it is always a welcome diversion and relief to have discussions, debates, and interesting conversations with a real person, especially one who understand an author’s loneliness.
Remember, that you shouldn’t seek other writers just to fulfill your career needs. Instead, form connections and build a network in which you also contribute your knowledge and information as well as providing support. After all, these are relationships. Perhaps the most important ones you will build.
I would be remiss if I didn’t give a big shout out to some of my fellow writers who I have the pleasure to know and the privilege of sharing their brilliant work.
- Rebecca Brockway is a talented, witty, and excellent writer. Her book, “Miss Matched at Midlife” is a must read and you can find it at http://www.missmatchedatmidlife.com/
- Mike Sahno is a versatile writer whose books will have you hooked. Please check them out at https://msahno.com/
- DB Corey is an author who has written a gritty, crime novel that you should put on your to-read list. You can find more information at http://www.dbcorey.com/
Thank you for reading. I look forward your comments.