How to Gain Powerful Street Cred with Real World Relationships
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Online networking, social media, cyber-conventions, and more tend to dominate the conversation when it comes to writing life. It’s easy to get so focused on this stuff that real world relationships might get lost. You need people to do more than retweet, repost, and re-blog for you. Let’s discuss why.
The first reason for making sure you take time to focus on real world relationships is that connections get you help you may not otherwise get. People want to know you are a person, not some name online or in a byline. When they understand who you are and what you do outside of writing, they feel like you are familiar to them and are more willing to help. Sometimes that help comes in the form of a trade, and sometimes they volunteer. Either way, knowing a little more about you than what you put in an author bio can create a familiarity that leads to extra opportunities.
Next, think about it. You’re good at some things other than writing, right? Me, I’m in mental health. I am good at psychology. This can translate into multiple different things from guest posts on how to integrate mental health into writing more effectively to helping with character development, like this one by J. K. Allen. My background gives me extra credibility with these things, because it comes from a place of education and experience. Look at yourself and see how you can get creative using other things in your life to build credibility with different aspects of writing.
Building Your Base
Another reason to build those real-life relationships is it can be a sales tactic, but an honest one. Those relationships will allow people to think they know you, which will also make them experience you in a more positive and warm way. These good, fuzzy feelings toward you can translate into good free publicity and potentially more sales. Worst case scenario, it gives you a loyal fan base.
Finally, there is something to say for having positive support when your writing career is not going well, and we all go through those moments. If all you’ve been doing is building a social media platform rather than connecting for real, you won’t have a shoulder to cry on when that rejection letter comes or writer’s block hits. Having the real-life relationships gives you that support and return that support for others. Both make you more of a real person, something readers love.
But wait, you say, I need to be a people person? I hate being a people person, you might go on. That’s okay. Those real-life relationships don’t have to be face-to-face relationships all the time. They can be ones you’ve cultivated online. The catch is you need to make sure you’re building a real relationship. Develop a level of trust with these people, share more personal stuff rather than only writing related, and the like—just like you would in real life.
In the end, you have to remember human beings are social creatures. We need relationships for a variety of reasons. When we are smart about how we build our relationships, we can gain strong friends and allies. Even better yet, we can have these relationships do double duty for us—positive and supportive relationships and one more piece to the puzzle of being successful as an author.
Stacy’s short stories are available now in these anthologies:
- “Karma Incarnate” in Twisted: A Horror Anthology
- “The Trial of Summer” in Tales from Our Write Side
- “Only Emma” in Anthology Askew Volume 001
- “Theron’s Dream” in Anthology Askew Volume 002
- “Seeking Salvation” in Anthology Askew Volume 003
- “Through the Gates of Hell in Mirrors and Thorns (Releasing Fall 2017)
Stacy’s poetry is available in these anthologies:
- “Searching” in Anthology Askew Volume 003
- A collection of 15 poems in Ambrosia: A Poetry Anthology (Releasing September 15th, 2017)
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