Saturday, August 31, 2013

Nine Ways to Meet Writer Friends: A Guest Post by Lauren Claire

Hey everyone! Lauren Claire, a young writer friend, of mine is back with another blog post! Here she is!

I know, I know. If you have a sense of humor, you’re probably thinking this: Lauren, the online hermit that is almost never seen outside her little circle of websites, actually has friends? Well of course I have friends! Do you know how many friends I have in characters alone?

All joking aside, today I’m going to share nine ways that YOU can make friends with not one writer, but many. Yes, I have made writer friends through almost all of these methods. Let’s start with the hardest category to conquer: the in-person friends.

In Person Method -
Before I begin, there is one key thing you need to keep in mind with this method. Any contacts made are useless unless you exchange some kind of information to stay in contact. This may mean phone numbers, it might be emails. It might even be a plan to meet up semi-regularly for an informal writers’ group support session.

1. Talking – The majority of my writing friends have NOT been made by any of the other methods listed below. Instead, some of my best writing friendships have occurred because I was open about being a writer. People, writing is important to you. It’s okay to talk about how you’re struggling with writing a chapter in groups of people. You never know…another writer might be in the group with you!

2. Local College Classes –
If you haven’t already, check your local community college to see if they offer creative writing classes. Most colleges will allow community members to take the class at a higher tuition rate. But hey–it’s sixteen weeks of in-depth lectures with not just writers, but LOCAL writers. Say hello to easy accountability and coffee writing dates!

3. Writers’ Conferences –
I cannot advocate this enough. Go to a writers’ conference. You will make FRIENDS. Find one now. End of conversation.

4. Coffee Shops –
Writers, as a stereotype, love coffee. It only makes sense that they also love coffee shops. Make a habit of spending time in your local coffee shop (even if it’s only a monthly reward for meeting your writing goal). It’s inevitable that you’ll eventually meet writer friends…especially if you’re brave enough to do one of the following: a) be brave enough to shout, “Are there any other writers here? or b) ask the hostess if she knows of any frequent writers.

5. Library Events – This is one of those things I haven’t tried, mainly because I’m too lazy. Keep an eye on your nearest library though. It might surprise you how many authors live in your area (yes, even rural farming areas), and local authors LOVE to give back to their community. If you have one, they might host a book-signing there.

Online Methods - When using these methods, you need to realize that you’ll never truly become writer friends with somebody without contacting them via email or Facebook message. You need to stay in contact with them, and be every bit their cheerleader as you want them to be for you.

1. Stalk Your Favorite Authors –
Yes, I said STALK. Like their Facebook page, follow them on Twitter, sign up for email on their blog. Visit everything every single day. You get the benefit of picking up their personal writing secrets, and you’ll get the benefit of meeting other writers who also stalk your favorite author.

2. Facebook/Linked-in Groups –
This is a great way to get quick responses to your questions, to get sympathy for your writer woes, and to help develop plots. It’s also a good way to make friends with writers who have similar tastes and interests.

3. Forums – Just like the groups, finding a writing-based forum is one of the easiest ways to make writer friends. For one thing, private message systems allows you to keep some anonymity compared to the other methods I’ve mentioned before while still becoming close to other writers. You may also find (through option #1) that there is a sub-forum for writing in an author-based message forum.

4. Blogs – Honestly, this is not my favorite method, but I have made a couple of good friends through this. The real trick to this is NOT to just follow the blog, it’s not just to comment on the blog, it’s to EMAIL the author. It doesn’t hurt to follow their Facebook pages and Twitter feeds, either. Anyways, if you take the time to actually have a conversation via email with a blog writer, chances are you’ll have a great friend and buddy.
How have you made writer friends? Have any of these methods worked for you? Do you have any questions about making writer friends?

Lauren Claire is a young writer with a passion for God, life, and her young friends. She knows that there are many kids in the world that have nobody to talk to about the problems they face, so she strives to write real stories they can identify with. When she's not writing, Lauren is busy with College, Camp ministries, and going on adventures.
Check out her blog!
Help support her writing dream on Facebook and Twitter!

Tori here. I hope you all enjoyed this post! As always, thanks for reading! :)

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