This week, I found myself thinking a lot about community. After meeting with my coordinator at the writing center where I work, conversing with fellow authors and writers, taking part in the Writer’s Guild Club on campus, attending a talk with Thisbe Nissen, and attending my 4th Local Author Night, I have a lot on my mind.
Something I am beginning to understand is the power and importance in community. I’m not just speaking of writers’ communities, but of “community” as a broader concept that can impact all people.
In the weeks leading up to my most recent book signing, I found that my college campus community was where I was receiving the most support and promotion for my work. There was an abundance of conversation at my college: my writing center coordinator was sending out emails to professors, my professors were announcing information to their class, and my fellow consultants were telling their friends about it. This was the one thing I was lacking when initially promoting my first novel: a conversational community.
I was a young writer with barely any experience when I published my first novel. Although this is how many authors begin, this can be detrimental to the success of young writers and new authors. It certainly was for me.
Luckily, I had my family connections and resources and some of my friends were intrigued enough to encourage me to participate in book signings and create social media outlets. Then, when I finally went to my first Local Author Night in September of 2016, almost three years ago now, I learned so much about how to network, what to say, and how to make my passion a success.
As time progressed and I gained more intellect in writing and advertising, I sold more books and became more inspired. Professors at college and consultants at the writing center have pushed me to further develop my writing and expand my creative outlets. Authors like Brandon Keily and Thisbe Nissen have taught me more about the world of publishing than I ever thought I’d understand. I’m lucky to have the community I have now. However, the most significant piece of advice that I have gathered from my fellow writing consultants and acclaimed authors and professors, is the power of community.
These people taught me that community means supporting those around you and sharing their work with the world. Community is sacrificing spoilers so you could offer insight and advice to your friend. In class, I’ve watched my professors create community through embracing people’s differences.
As I began to think about what community meant to me, I was redesigning this website and I realized that I wanted to rediscover this concept of community on a new scale. Even more, I wanted to expand beyond writing communities to include readers, new writers, artists, musicians, and so many other people.
So why not create a platform where people can just talk? Why not just start a conversation?
So that’s what I did.
This virtual space is not for anyone to assert their authority. Instead, these blogs, and this space, is geared for the creation and support of a community of passionate people.
We should serve each other by encouraging, supporting, and talking with each other.
By creating conversation, offering advice and tips, and sharing your knowledge with others, we are creating a supportive and safe place for writers, artists, and future authors, to learn how to be successful in their writing, publishing, and promotions. This is what I hope this blog platform can become.