Theo Pauline Nestor’s blog Writing Is My Drink, is cleaver and fresh. Recently a writer friend of mine alerted me to her latest blog titled “Networking and Other Things I Don’t Want to Do.” With there being a massive online community for a writer to give attention too, it’s easy for one to get overwhelmed regarding time management. The bottom line being that writers need time to write. Writing takes up a lot of time; time alone with maybe just a cat or a plant to keep you company. Theo has found ideas to keep balanced and stay plugged into the world. Below is an excerpt from that blog. Enjoy!
“Q. How important is networking to developing a successful writing career?
A. In a recent interview I saw republished in Real Change newspaper, memoirist Nick Flynn (Another Bullshit Night in Suck City) said that he sees his development as a writer akin to the Buddhist approach to spiritual development: a three-pronged approach that includes sangha (community), dharma (study/reading) and meditation (practice/writing). I really like this idea. Instead of thinking of networking as a business activity you need to do to get ahead, I think it’s really helpful to look at building a writing community as an important aspect of how you nurture yourself as a writer, how you stay inspired and excited. I think when people go out to do big N NETWORKING as a means of getting ahead, they are often disappointed and frustrated as the luck and chance and opportunities that can come from knowing other writers tend to be something that comes with serendipity and is something that can’t be forced. But if you look at building a writing community as something that’s fun and happy, you’ll probably want to do it and will do it in a natural way that is really an extension of who you are. You’ll take classes or workshops or maybe you’ll go to a conference here and there over the years, and here and there you’ll connect with a new writer you really like. It’ll be fun–it’ll be making a friend. Maybe that friend will connect you to a writing group or turn you onto a great book. That group or book will lead you to something else, a new opportunity or possibility. One day one of these people might have a suggestion for you that you follow and that suggestion will turn into an opportunity that opens a first door. You’ll go through that door. You’ll meet more people. If it’s as easy as breathing, you’re doing it right.”
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Shannon Laws is a Pacific Northwest poet, voice-over talent, and podcast producer. She is the author of four poetry books, the most recent “Fallen” published by Independent Writer’s Studio Press. Shannon has received two Mayor’s Arts Awards and the Community Champion Award. She makes her home in Bellingham, Washington, USA.
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