Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Saturday, January 10, 2009

100,000 Reasons to Celebrate

by Sariah S. Wilson

It's been almost three years in the making, and I know no one else has probably noticed this but me (because I'm all obsessive like that), but our blog hit 100,000 unique visits! Woo-hoo! Celebration time!

It seems like a good time to do a little celebrating. We've had some great news already this week on the blog (welcome to the newest Wells' baby!), but I've got some good news as well. My husband was recently offered a job which he accepted. Thank you to everyone who kept us in their thoughts and prayers. It's a little less money than he was making before, but in an economy like this one I'm just grateful that he has a job at all. And all the things that made him miserable at his last job (the impossible-to-meet deadlines, the 14-hour workdays, the constant stress and blame), the new company is nothing like that. Their set-up is totally different and my husband is thrilled to be in such a mellower atmosphere.

It also made me recognize all over again the importance of networking (which is how we make this writing related!). He was able to land the job in part because his old boss works at the new company.

Having connections has helped me out in ways in my personal life lately - we were able to get adorable pictures and Christmas cards of the kids this year because one of my sisters works for Kiddie Kandids and had points she's earned as an employee that could be used for those pictures.

Writing wise, some of the best networking for me has been online (I don't live in Utah). The first place where I made some connections with soon-to-be/already published authors was at a forum for That's where I met Julie, Jeff and Rob. Julie was particularly encouraging to me in my writing and gave me some advice on my first chapter and publisher tips. Rob was really pro-Covenant (my publisher) and gave me his advice on trying to get published. Jeff and I realized that we had the same editor and I told him my idea for starting up this blog.

There were many other authors there who gave me advice and encouragement - like David Woolley who helped me work through writing my first battle scene - and all those posters who celebrated with me when I sold my first manuscript. It was a fantastic experience to be surrounded by so many already published and still novice writers, and it was because of those connections that I got quotes for my first book and a lot of the publicity around it came because of that networking. I didn't set out to network - I just wanted to be in a place where people wanted the same thing that I did - to be published in the LDS market.

Nowadays, my half-hearted networking comes from LDStorymakers. I should be better about developing relationships there, but on the lists I'm much more of a lurker than a poster. I feel like I know everyone there probably a lot better than they know me. I see how much they rely on one another for advice and encouragement and for help in publicity tours or for getting reviews or quotes. It is a wonderful environment to be a part of, and if you've been published in the LDS market, I would absolutely encourage you to join. If you haven't been published yet, I'd make it a goal to become part of this amazing group!

For those that are better networkers than me (and this is admittedly inspired in part by the most recent episode of Ugly Betty), what are your tips? Or how has networking helped you in your life or your career?


At 1/14/2009 4:12 PM, Blogger Doug Johnston said...

You guys all know I love this site. Congratulations of having the best blog EVER!


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