What Makes a Writer Successful?

Writer friends at BEA 2013. Well, if that isn’t a loaded question. We all know the basic answers: study your craft; write, edit, revise; spend hours on sites like Query Tracker and Agent Query searching for a home for your literary babies; spend even more hours researching publishers, vetting the serious from the thinly-veiled attempts to steal your money.

But, at what point do we make the leap beyond all of that?

I think I know the answer. Or part of it, at any rate.

For years, I have being going it alone as a writer. I did all the writerly things I was supposed to do, but let’s face it, I’m just one person. However, within the past few years something incredible happened.

I developed a tribe.

A writer tribe.

It began when I joined Broad Universe, an organization that promotes women writers of science fiction, fantasy and horror. They welcomed me with open arms, and, thanks to Broad Universe, I have been able to read and sell at many conventions that otherwise wouldn’t have looked at me twice.

And, things snowballed from there. I won’t bore you with a play by play accounting, but suffice to say that I made writer frineds. Lots of them. People who will critique for me, retweet my links, and comment on blog posts.

The picture above is of me and some of my writer friends (and Scene 13 members!) at BEA 2013. Would I still be a writer without them? Yes. Would I have come as far along as I have? Probably not.

Without my tribe, I know I wouldn’t be where I am today. With them, and all the writers I’ve yet to meet (and add to my tribe), the sky’s the limit.

8 thoughts on “What Makes a Writer Successful?

  1. I love Broad Universe! I was able to sell a story to an anthology that I heard about on the mailing list.

  2. Let’s hear it for tribes! Especially tribes made up of inherently solitary people who need to get out more. *eyes door suspiciously*

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