Rekka is often reminded at conventions, or during the occasional writing group meeting, that some folks have the wrong idea about what it means to network. So today she wants to talk about being a real, decent, human author being, instead of that terrifying nightmare clutching a bloody pack of business cards.
- Most writers respond better to people who just listen and sympathize (be real, show you’re putting the work in by relating to others)
- Do not ask a writer for their agent’s name before you ask for THEIR name. I mean, don’t ask them for their agent’s name at all, really, but definitely don’t look THROUGH the other writer to move your career forward.
- Yes, these events are about networking (well, some of them) but if you are going to be a long-term writer, these are the people you will be seeing over and over again for years to come. Believe me, it’s way more fun if they like you than if they run when they see you coming.
- Go to a conference to be excited with other writers about the process of writing. Go to see old friends and make new friends, and try out a glorious new outfit or go to lunch with people or surprise them with coffee after a late night at barcon. You know, be cool, and be friends.
- Don’t make it about “leaving with something”. Make it about opening up your mind to improve yourself.
- I know it’s called an elevator pitch, but please don’t dive into an elevator with an agent and corner them.
- Don’t treat other authors like your path to success.
- Bring joy, receive joy. Bring transactional, receive… at best, a transaction. At worst, the reputation of being transactional.
- This is not to say that you must say NO if someone you are interested in doing business with asks if you want to have a business lunch or coffee at a Con.
- Also, this is not quite being transactional but do practice your pitch out loud to friends before you get there, so it’s not painful if someone does ask you to tell them about your current project or latest book.
- Don’t sign up to be a speaker just to be seen. Do it because you want to help the con committee put on a good show and you have something to add to the conversation. You don’t want to be remembered as the person who did not belong on that panel.
- The use of likes and attention as (attempted) currency, especially on social media
- Don’t hover over conversations and then leap in to interject without adding anything.
- Don’t try to use the appearance of being close with Writer A to impress Agent B.
- Just be cool. You, be cool. The whole experience will be much cooler for it.
For our Patreon supporters: To hear the snip-we-clipped ramblecast from each week’s episode, along with a special episode each month wherein Rekka and Brian talk about their favorite (or not so favorite) movies, and now, these episodes featuring our story work, please visit our Patreon page and pledge your support of our podcast starting at just a dollar per month. Thanks for your consideration!
Please consider leaving a rating or review in iTunes or Apple Podcast App, and if you know someone who would enjoy this episode, please send them a link!