Writing is a solitary activity – yes. And it’s a profession that the majority of your social circles might not be into. But that doesn’t mean you can’t find friends that relate to your particular addiction to hallucinating images on a blank page. You just have to look in the right places. This week, I’m sharing all about the ways I’ve found creative writing friends that have been both support and motivation for me when I needed it the most.
This is crucial, because sometimes no matter what you do, the words just won’t come. Or maybe you’re like me, and sometimes have the opposite problem – where you have all the words, but can’t sit still long enough to get any of them down. Either way, your writer friends are what you can lean on when the world around you caves in and you don’t have the words you need.
Join Facebook groups full of potential new friends.
This is the easiest way to meet other authors! The only downside I can think of is that some of these groups get a little snarky and obnoxious. Ideally, you’ll want to find a free and open forum where you can share anything you want about publishing and ask for tips. But some of the groups I’ve been in are either all self-promo or all “if you can Google it, then don’t ask it here”. But if you can find an open, honest, free-for-all, that’s a great place to learn and grow. I’ve even met one of my closest friends this way!
Follow similar authors on Instagram.
I’ve also met writer friends through Instagram – turns out, common aesthetics are a great personality metric! Well, not always – it depends. But what I’m trying to say is, look through relevant hashtags like #bookstagram, #bookshelf, #authorsofinstagram, and see who pops up. If you like what you see, leave them a sweet little comment. Boom – friendship, activated. Maybe you’ll strike up a conversation about your pets or awkward moments from high school. But what’s for sure, is that you’ll connect with people chasing the same plot-induced high that you are. And that’s worth celebrating. For more tips on using Instagram, read this recent post HERE.
Join a local author club to meet new friends.
I’m a proud board member of the Rhode Island Authors Association, and I can’t even begin to explain how much that has been a blessing in my writing life. Through this group, not only have I gotten into in-person book signings, but I’ve also met other authors who support my work and motivate me to keep at it. That’s also how I found this fun writing gig with Inkitt – one of my fellow board members invited me to join, and I’m so glad she did. Finding a group of local writers you can network with is a major game-changer. If you’re not sure where to start, asking one of your author Facebook groups is a great idea!
Volunteer to speak at schools.
Students love the chance to learn from one of the “pros”. If you find administrator contacts for your local high school (or whatever grade level best fits your book), ask if they offer speaking gigs. They might even have a stipend set aside for that kind of thing so you can get paid (not guaranteed, but always a nice perk if so). These kinds of events allow you not only to network with teachers and students, but they also get you to see how your target demographic reacts to your story. It’s a great confidence boost that will also motivate you to keep writing when the going gets hard.
As you can see, there are a good handful of options for meeting other writers. If you look in the right places and pose the right questions, you’ll see them coming out of the woodwork.