Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Why Writers Need Their Friends

Writing is a lonely occupation. It would be nice if there were book signings on a regular basis, but that's not the real world for most of us. And those book signings will never happen unless we do spend those lonely hours writing.

Since moving to Illinois I've been struck by how much I miss my various Indiana networks -- whether it's the book clubs, Sisters in Crime meetings, events sponsored by Muncie's Midwest Writers Workshop or the Indianapolis Writers Center...and I could go on.

At the Not So Square Arts & Literary Festival in Mt Vernon, MO.
I've been preoccupied with trying to live in one place and sell a house in another. Add that to a fresh vertebra fracture and trying to finish two books, and I'm spending a lot of time alone. Salvation has been a nearby Starbucks. I can sit there and write for hours, paying no (or little) attention to others' conversations and ignoring the dirty dishes. I don't have to do them. Just enough people contact to keep me feeling part of the human race.

Still, no Sisters in Crime in Springfield, IL and I don't see me driving to Chicago. Imagine how thrilled I was to pull into a parking lot today and see a van advertising a writer who wanted to do cross promotion with others. We exchanged information and she seems to know good places for book sales and signings. I told her about a group I had just joined in Missouri.

I met Schyrlet Cameron and other members of Homegrown Books at the Not So Square Arts and Literary Festival on September 7th, in Mount Vernon. They had organized the authors who participated and gathered us together for an informal dinner afterwards. Homegrown Books finds coffee shops and other businesses that are willing to sell books in a rural area that has no commercial bookstore. They arrange author book signings and other activities.  I almost drooled.

So, I have a model for what a Springfield group might do, and maybe a partner in crime, so to speak. This local author (Aurora Lightbourne) writes sci-fi with a touch of romance. Wish us luck. 

And we have a date!  Join Springfield authors at the first Author Networking Meeting on Saturday, October 19, at 2 p.m. at Monacal's Pizza. Info and directions are at Goodreads.

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