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How To Network As An Author!

KWE Publishing Newsletter - 08/03/23

No matter what industry you're in, you've probably heard about the importance of networking, and as an author, networking is super valuable, too! Networking will help you make awesome contacts in the industry, promote your book (and if you have one, your business/other entrepreneurial endeavors), and learn more about the publishing industry!

Understandably, though, a lot of authors are either unsure of how to network or are nervous about talking to strangers about their writing.

Luckily, marketing doesn't have to be painful or awkward—instead, it can be a fun and engaging experience! Keep reading to get some tips on ways you can network with others!

Interact with other authors' content!

If you're not quite ready to step out and chat about your book with people you don't know, starting online can be a great way to kick off your networking journey. An easy way to do this is to seek out other authors' content and interact with it.

As we've talked about before, you want to form genuine relationships with authors (or editors, publishers, marketers, etc.) who you connect with online. Try to find authors who write in your genre. Follow their social media pages and leave a like or a comment, check out their site, and consider buying their book!

If you have an active social media page, too, an author is likely to take a look and follow you back. This can lead to some great conversations about the publishing process and writing!

Attend conferences or writing groups (online or in person)!

I know a lot of writers are a little more introverted, and the idea of attending a big conference or writing group can be intimidating. Fortunately, there are plenty of conferences that you can attend online, such as the Women in Publishing Summit, which is a yearly conference for writers, editors, publishers, and others interested in learning about publishing! Likewise, there are a lot of cool writing groups that meet online!

There are benefits to attending events offline, too. Writing groups are amazing places to get feedback on your writing from people who love to read and write. If you're hesitant to share your writing immediately, try to attend a meeting where someone else's writing is being critiqued. This way, you can get a feel for what the process is like. Remember, writing groups are there to support writers, and constructive criticism is a great way to grow your skills! And of course, attending a conference in person will give you the opportunity to learn from experts. Google for conferences in your area. If you live in Central Virginia, I encourage you to check out the James River Writers Conference scheduled October 6-8, 2023. It's a fantastic group (and yours truly will be leading a workshop AND learning lots from the other participants and attendees)!

If you're not sure where to start, try looking for writing groups or conferences that are local to you. You can also search for groups by subject (fiction or nonfiction) and genre.

Swap promotions with other authors.

Promotional swaps are a great way to get to know other authors, find interesting reads, and grow your network all at the same time!

If you find an author that you click with, consider asking them if they'd like to share a promotion of yours and if you can do the same for them. This can be on your newsletter, social media, or wherever you share your own content with readers. You can even share photos, graphics, and copy to make it easy for them to promote your work!

The key to this is to only promote things you truly enjoy and that you think your readers will enjoy, too Yes, this is helpful for you and the author, but you don't want to promote something that's going to turn readers off or that doesn't align with your views, so make sure to do your due diligence here!

At the end of the day, networking doesn't have to be scary! Try to look at networking as an opportunity to meet other people who share your interests and who want to share their own work, too—you never know what connections you might make!

Do you like networking as an author, or does networking stress you out? Are there any unique ways you've connected with your communities? Be sure to reach out and let us know!

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