Wednesday, February 29, 2012

We Need A Heartbeat!

Sometimes we have to crawl out of our writing cave and rub elbows with other heart-beating creatures. I'm saying that we actually NEED to get out of our house to stay among the living.

Another way to connect with writers is through local, unaffiliated writing groups. Cincinnati has Cincinnati Writers Project which is divided into a fiction group and poetry group. Use the internet to search for groups in your area.
I belong to the local chapter of Romance Writers of America. . .YEP! Romance! And I don't even write romance. BUT that's okay. There are so many cross-genre authors in my local chapter that we have a great mesh of knowledge about the craft. And who couldn't learn and grow more? 
There are so many published authors in my group, and their publishing paths are so different, but we love the craft. We help each other understand what is going on in this small, crazy writing world. We have guest speakers that talk about everything from goal, motivation, and conflict to detectives. 
I travel to several writer's groups a year to be a guest speaker on marketing and promoting or self-publishing. This has been a great opportunity for me and if I didn't belong to a writer's group, I'd never known how to expand my readership. 
These organizations offer many opportunities…and you know what I say about missing those opportunities—DON’T! Speakers, small conferences, and critique groups are just some of what writing groups offer.
Conferences are often held by your local writing groups, too. This means exposure to big agents/editors who are looking for that next “big” author. Or if you are self-published, it's a great way to work on that PR buddy or networking that can only be done in person.
That just might be you!
When you’re published, reader-centric conferences like Fresh Fiction’s Readers and Ritas or Lori Foster’s Reader Author Get Together, offer you an intimate way to connect with die-hard readers who will proselytize your book to their friends or to anyone who will listen. Whatever your goal, there’s a conference for you!
Do you belong to any groups outside of you house? 
Let's talk critique groups Friday!


  1. Just last night I visited the Apex Literary Guild. Never heard of Apex? It's a small town sandwiched between other small towns. A handful of writers gets together at a coffeehouse, drinks java, and talks shop. It's so much fun! :D

    1. I love that, Tamara~ When I get to rub elbows with other writers, it makes my spirits lift and get my juices flowing! The java isn't bad either;)

  2. Excellent advice, but hard for those die hard introverts. However, there's nothing like being around other writers to help you learn your craft, as well as how to promote! BTW, Tonya, is there a way you could bottle some of your enegy and give it to me;)?

    1. Hahhaa! Maria! I'm up by 6am and out by 10pm:)) I love meeting with my groups. I get so many ideas and have so much fun coming up with the craziest plots. It really get me excited to be a writer!

  3. I so agree, Tonya! I know I'm spoiled since I live in the San Francisco Bay Area. In the nine counties surrounding the bay, there are 7.5 million people. That's right! That's lots of readers, writers, and yes, bookstores, and writing groups, clubs, conference, etc. I recommend authors check out, a site designed for creating in-person meetings. My husband and I run a few. Here's one: Anyone can join, even if they're not local.

    Tonya, I saw your post listed in the FB's Writing Kindle Books and so am just getting to know you! I see we do similar work. So cool! Love your energy and your clear mission!