Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Importance of Writer Friends

The SFA-RWA board

I recently took on a leadership position in my local chapter of Romance Writers of America (that's me in the middle, above).  A year ago, I’d never even been to a meeting—and I'd never shown my work to another living soul.  Now, I couldn’t imagine being on this journey without the support of my writer-friends.

I think I was waiting to figure out how much I wanted this, to see if it was “just a phase.”  When I finished my second book, I finally realized this whole writing thing wasn’t going to go away, and I might as well accept it and get to know some other writers.  In other words, I grew balls. 

I should have done it ages and ages ago.  Right away, I met a bunch of fabulous women, most of them much further along the road to publication than me.  They gave me encouragement.  I found some fabulous critique partners.  And when I got offers of representation, they were there to help me make a decision.  Most of all, though, it was nice to meet people who’d been exactly where I’d been, and made it.  They knew just how draining it was to send out queries and go on submission.  The Enabler is a great listener, but he can only empathize.  It was a new experience for me to be around people who truly knew what it's like to be a writer.

If you’re an aspiring author, don't wait as long as I did to find some writer friends in your city.  There's nothing like sitting down to have coffee with someone who really *gets* it.


  1. I have a writing group online, but you're right, it'd be nice to find someone face-to-face.

  2. Just for the simple joy of complaining in person!

  3. I totally need to start doing local, writerly things. This has convinced me.

  4. Looks like you found one of the most important components-support!

  5. I was SUPER nervous at my first RWA meeting, but people made me feel really welcome. I also won the door prize, which included seasons 1-4 of Supernatural, which I had never seen. What more can I say? It was a good omen.