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A Love Letter (Of Sorts)

I 'joined' the young adult publishing world when I was eighteen. Before that I was a solitary writer (I posted a little on but)(no you cannot find me), and the only thing I'd ever finished was a series of short stories. When I joined Absolute Write in 2008 I didn't have any writer friends who were serious about finishing a novel or getting published or anything. To most of my friends, what I did was a quirky hobby, but not serious.

All of that changed when I joined Absolute Write and made friends with ladies that I'm still close to today! Not only did I meet people who shared the intensity of my desire to write toward publication, but I also met people who were incredibly supportive of my writing, who cheered me on when I didn't think I could finish a book, who told me I was great, even when I wasn't. And that summer I finished my very first book (it was 250k words)(don't look at me).

I know this advice is out there, written in many ways, telling you the same thing. But I want to repeat it!  And add a little something. It was (and continues to be) incredibly important that I have writer friends that I trust deeply, to tell me the truth when my writing isn't working, to cheer me on when I'm in the dumps, to give me good advice. And I think a thing that sometimes gets lost in the general advice giving of 'find a support group' is that to in order for the group to work for you you have to trust them deeply. For me, and for many of us, writing is a thing tied to our very core, and giving a book to a critique partner is very different than releasing it to a faceless mass of people who's opinions may or may not matter.

Ways that worked for me:

  • Twitter! I knew lots of faces from Absolute Write but twitter felt a lot less pressure making, and its really casual and person focused! I met lots of people on AW but I became friends over twitter because there is no fear of double posting.
  • Writing threads on forums! Most writing forums will have a 'share snippets' thread -- this is a great way to share your writing and find people of like mindedness re: writing!
  • Blogs! Commenting on fellow writers blogs, participating in blog fests, joining in on RTW or Teaser Tuesday: these are all really great ways to meet and greet other people.
These are all ways that worked for me! And maybe they won't work for you, maybe you have a different way of meeting people. Perhaps you have figured out how to meet people through the tumblr, or pinterest, or some other new fangled way (I hear twitter hashtags are a thing people use seriously? I have never been able to figure that one out). Please share how you met the writing loves of your life so we can all learn! 
Somaiya Daud

Somaiya Daud received her BA and MA from a university in DC in English. She is currently working on her PhD. When not writing or studying, she spends too much time on the internet yelling about comics and robots. Her first novel, Mirage, is coming 2017 from Flatiron Books.

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  1. Yes, please share how you met the "writing loves of your life," because some days I desperately feel in need of support. My friends are all well and good, but they don't quite understand my desire to write and become published. I "attend" twitter chats, I respond to blogs, and I post in forums, but I mostly feel as if I'm on the fringe of the "writing community." I'd love recommendations! :)

  2. Networking with other writers is so important and encouraging! I'm lucky to have a great literary community where I live, with free workshops every month. I know that, even with local writing groups, it's hard to find people that see writing as more than a hobby (nothing against them, of course!)

    It's amazing, though, the help fellow writers are willing to give online through blogs, giveaways, and contests. We're all part of a community, and I hope that someday I can help other writers the way I've been helped.

  3. Nothing is as much fun as networking and finding people who have the same passion for writing. I love reading what other people are writing too.

  4. For me, the biggest step I took was joining my local RWA chapter. Though I don't strictly write romance, they did put on the occasional YA workshop so I signed up. I've gained so much, and met my critique partner during their annual critique sessions. Most RWA chapters have published authors who are always willing to lend support and help out (and show up the meetings) and while the workshops may or may not be about my genre, the relationships and connections are priceless. Worth every penny and I highly recommend!

    1. Same here, Nicki! Five years ago--even three years ago--I never would have imagined I'd joint a Romance Writers group. But alas, I wrote a YA with the romance as a driving factor of the plot, and the local conference I attended was so helpful and well organized, I ended up joining my local chapter. Meeting with writers regularly has kept me encouraged and on track.


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Item Reviewed: A Love Letter (Of Sorts) Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Sumayyah