Not an exact number, but I’m pretty sure its been six months since I found out I would be a published author. Up until that point, I was a solitary writer. I had a couple close friends and my muse/#1 beta reader/wife/coolest girl ever, read my stories and that was it. I wrote three novels with no outside help from the internet. Well, I did have one critique partner when I started writing Beasts of Burdin, but it didn’t go so well.
The point is, in the last six months I’ve been introduced to this huge community of authors and bloggers. I have met some pretty cool people, exchanged some pretty fun conversations, and most of all, I’ve learned. I’ve learned about writing techniques and gotten my own stuff critiqued by other published authors. Thanks to some helpful veterans out there I’ve also learned more and more about the industry, something I hadn’t put near enough thought in to since I began taking my writing seriously.
So, my advice to anyone out there who is a solitary writer? Go into the wide world of internet and find people like you to share your craft with. Yes, there are plenty of assholes out there and you are bound to run in to some of them, but when you get in with some like-minded people it’s a whole lot of fun and encouragement.
While I’m here, I’m going to name some names. That’s right, I’m pointing fingers.
J.A. Belfield is an author and happens to be an editor. I’m going to be having her edit some of my work here shortly. If you need some polishing for the ol’ manuscript you should drop her a line. She’s also given me tons of advice and been super patient with my constant questions that I could probably find answers to if I just used that whole “search engine” thing. Find her here.
Lolita Verroen is a blogger and beta reader. She has done me the honor of reading one of my early manuscript and for reasons not quite understood by me, agreed to read another one. She is honest in her reviews and honesty is very hard to come by in a beta reader. She also runs a book tour blog so if you’re trying to promote your book, give her a shout. She resides in this corner of the internet.
Laney McMann is an author who I have exchanged beta reads with. She’s working on a teen series that I’ve had the pleasure of reading and the first book is out now. She posts lots of music and inspirational writing stuff on her website. Worth a read if you need a quick pick-me-up. Bam! <—That’s the link to her site if you couldn’t tell. I’m just running out of ways to name links.
Also, if you rock the twitter (and who doesn’t? I mean, really, it’s just so…hip?) Check out Scott Zachary, I don’t agree with everything he says, but he says most of it with a sort of humor I can appreciate. And Danielle Shipley if you’re in to fairy tale retellings, give her a quick follow.