My $8k Journey – Author Networking

Author Networking

On the off chance you’ve found this page without reading my previous posts, you really should start at the beginning with: How I made $8,000 in only 3 months publishing my first book.

If you’re a new author, there’s one very important lesson that I have to impart: you can’t go it alone–nor should you. In the indie publishing business, author networking is crucial. I wouldn’t be where I am today without two very important author friends: Angel Haze and Sean Hinn. I met both of these authors on Facebook writing groups. So that’s where we’re going to spend most of our time on this post. Talking about meeting other authors and where to find them. Because that’s really the difficult thing isn’t it?

Where to begin author networking?

When you’re new and you don’t know anybody, how do you meet people? And where do you find them? It’s not like you can pop down to the local bookstore and just meet authors. And even if you did (be it at a signing or something) it’s not like that author is likely to give you the time of day (aside from signing your book for 12.4 seconds). Sure, you could probably find some regularly scheduled local meet ups with other authors if you live in a more populated area like I do (San Diego). But we’re talking about finding authors where they hang out in digital online groups. There are plenty of good ones available where authors regularly chat and exchange ideas, where new voices can be heard and questions answered. I’m a fantasy author, so I know where all the good fantasy groups are, but I also know of much larger groups that welcome authors of all genres. Now, I don’t hardly ever talk to these authors that aren’t part of my genre, and finding other fantasy authors in them, while possible, is a bit more difficult and I don’t tend to meet “new” people in the larger conglomerate groups. So where do you go then?

Facebook Writing Groups

Start off by looking for smaller writing groups in your genre. One that I started with when I was beginning my journey was called Fantasy Writer’s Support Group. There’s likely to be other groups like this of varying genres. You just have to search for them. Try Romance Writers, Mystery Writers, Thriller Writers, etc. Google those terms and see what pops up, then join a couple. I joined 20 new groups when I started out. Most of them were duds. But you’ll find a few good and active groups that aren’t just spamming “buy my book” posts, and those are the ones to get actively involved in. If you’re a YA author, regardless of your genre, a great one is An Alliance of Young Adult Authors (AAYAA). A large majority are actually YA Fantasy authors, but with over 3,000 members, many of them are other genres as well. Also if you’re a fantasy author, you could join my own group, Indie Fantasy Addicts. IFA is a reader’s group, but a large portion of them membership are actually authors themselves. We have a smaller group of about 100 at the time of posting called Authors of IFA. Nearly 80% of this group are personal friends of mine that I’ve made over the last year.

Making Friends

You see, author networking is all about making friends. It’s no different than making friends in person. You don’t find one of these author groups, join and just say “I’m supposed to network with authors. So here I am. Let’s network.” I saw someone do that recently. I kid you not. You wouldn’t walk up to a stranger and say “I’m supposed to make friends. Let’s be friends.” You have to first provide value. You need to give input. You need to interact. Just be active, talk to people, respond to posts, and you’ll soon find that your conversations are spilling over onto a Private Messenger chat. Before you know it, you’ll have 30, 40, or 50 separate conversations with people in the course of a week and you’ll go back looking for someone you talked to recently and won’t be able to find it through the multitude of messages you’ve had (also a true story. It’s amazing how many people I talk to now only a year after I started my author journey).

Start now

Let’s put this into practice right now.

Are you a Fantasy author? Drop me a line on Facebook @tlbransonbooks.

Not a fantasy author? Even if you are, check out these larger groups for authors of all genres.
20Booksto50k
An Alliance of Young Adult Authors
SPF Community

If you’re not on Facebook. Get on Facebook. Now.

Seriously.

Instagram and Pinterest are other great places that are useful for growing your author platform, but Facebook is where people are networking.

Next up: Part 6 of My $8k Journey – Author Newsletters

Coming soon.

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