Today’s post is going to be about networking and putting yourself out there. This applies to every kind of writer – whether you’re a journalist, an emerging author or a wannabe professional film critic.
As writers, we all love to see our byline or name in print, especially when it’s accompanied by a piece that we’ve spent our heart and soul into writing. But getting published isn’t always as simple as sending an editor something you’ve written. Unfortunately, a lot of time its going to come down to who you know and not what you know.
This is where networking comes in. It’s an important part of your writing career because not only does it allow you to develop industry contacts, but it also helps get you noticed. Who knows, you might establish a great contact with someone who knows someone else in the publishing industry. When you network, their contacts become your contacts and vice versa.
So whether you’re job hunting in the publishing and media industry, or wanting to get noticed by publishing houses, then take a look at our networking hints and tips.
1. Attending networking events – this is a vague one because when you think about it, any time can be a networking time. Look for places that will have like minded individuals and present opportunities to share your work. A writing group is a good example. Google all the writers centres in Australia and more than likely they can point you to writing groups in the area.
2. Strength in numbers – Networking requires you to speak to complete strangers, which of course can be very daunting and nerve wracking. So bring a wingman! But remember that it should only be one or two people tops, because after all, the point of networking is to meet new people not socialise with the ones you already know.
3. If you’re attending a networking event to meet someone specific (ie: a book editor), do research about them beforehand. If not, at least gather information about the workplace. That way, when you’re in conversation, these topics can act as a starting point for in-depth discussions.
4. Get contact details – networking is pointless if you don’t get the contact details of the person you spoke to. A good way to exchange contact details is to have your own business card, that way you can ask to exchange business cards rather than awkwardly asking for their number or email. We’ve been there before and trust me, it doesn’t leave very good impressions about your character.
Need more help with networking? Then check out this guide on how to network.
For all you emerging writers out there, have a look at the Indie Writer’s Network, an online platform where you can socialise with other upcoming authors and writers.
Opportunities and events
Australia’s online arts and culture publication, ArtsHub, are currently on the hunt for editorial interns to join their team. More details are here.
Writers Victoria have opened their first competition specifically writers out in the regional areas. Check out the details here.
“You can’t judge a book by it’s cover but you can sure sell a bunch of books if you have a good one.” ― Jayce O’Neal