Being the new guy/gal in any scenario is wretched. It’s a time-intensive pain-staking venture into basic self-promotion. That’s a very dry way of saying you have to be social. If you broke down the primary colors of any basic relationship, you’ll see just how many variants you keep; it’s not just business and friends. You have your childhood friends, college friends, work friends, hobby friends, drinking friends, family friends, friends with families, single friends, those friends that you call to help you bury bodies, those friends you call to help you create the bodies you need to bury, the friends that can never be counted on, the friends that always can, Facebook friends and those friends you aren’t sure how you ever met them or why you’re friends.
What you may ask yourself is what do these people have in common? They can all help you on your journey from author to published author. Granted, when you start out, you are the new kid all over again. You’ve shed the moniker of friend (whatever hue you may be to someone) and must now forge a separate path.
I met with a few friends for coffee this weekend. We like to chat about video games, movies, TV shows and IT-related hoopla. One is a writer/director for an Indie set of YouTube videos <insert plug here FB / YouTube >. He also does other projects and is aspiring to write a book. I am ever-encouraging of anyone wanting to pursue entertainment passions (writing, videos, acting, painting, etc.).
It is always important to me to keep a good and expansive circle of friends around to take notice and mention you along the way. Similar to what I just did for my friend, David, someday he in turn may mention me or my blog or my story to one of his friends. Thus the networking magic-sprinkle-dust is thrown into the air and hopefully it will land on people willing to pass it along.
Likewise, don’t forget or disregard friends that aren’t religiously following your every move. They will when they have time. I’m guilty of that too, I had my friend’s Bar Flies series in my YouTube playlist for months and now just started getting caught up. Likewise, my other friends aren’t keeping up on my Time Traveler series. Eventually, we’ll all get caught up on those and will then be behind on each other’s new works. Such is the cycle.
One tip for anyone starting to put dabbles of work out there: make sure that your patience matches your subtlety. People will follow you and look at your content until you get to that pushy/uncomfortable stage. Openly calling someone out asking if they’ve read your work creates an uncomfortable rift if they haven’t. Instead, mention your work in passing, not directly, when the conversation allows it.
“Oh, ya. This series I have on my blog currently is also on my Facebook page. It’s about time travel and how this teenager is affected because he’s unable to control it.”
“Hey, have you read my Blog? Do you follow my Page on Facebook? I sent you like five requests. You should check it out and let me know.”
See how one spotlights your work and the ways to find it and the other points the spotlight at your friend? Plus, if they have read it, they will agree and follow your conversation, which confirms you have a follower. And if they haven’t, maybe this will give them an open opportunity to ask you questions about it since you are not demanding a response.
Bait your traps and wait, don’t go screaming wildly with a net toward your audience. I say this because I am generally that lunatic in the safari hat running at you, net double-gripped above my head like a Viking warrior. This is the “do as I say, not as I do” portion of my blog. Now, go Like me on Facebook and re-read everything off my blog. Do not make me break out the war paint.
NaNoWriMo Count: 2100 +