They’ve Got My Back

- by Vonna Harper

 Right before starting on this blog I emailed a couple of writer friends. Letting my hair down around them is nothing new so maybe I shouldn’t still get this warm and fuzzy feeling when its time to chat with Kate, Catherine, Karen, Gail, Tallie, etc, etc, and my newest bestest friend Lynda.

But I do. And whenever I get a personal email from someone else who spends their time pounding a keyboard and sorting through the characters and plots in our minds, I’m delighted. It doesn’t matter whether the news is good, so-so, down, or over the top one way or the other. These are the women who speak my language and I speak theirs.

We don’t need to pontificate about the hours spent slicing and dicing to whip a manuscript into shape. We don’t need to spell out great details about agents, editors, publishers, readers, promo, and publicity.  We’ve all been there.

One friend writes the sweetest romances. Another creates worlds I never could. Yet another is spreading her magic over the religious market while another dear soul writes more in a month than I do in six. If they’re ever uneasy because I write erotica they haven’t said.  Instead they ask how my husband and mother are doing (so-so, thanks) and I know they care. I hold my own breath when one faces another round of chemo and delights with someone else when a grandchild enters kindergarten. 

In the foggy past when the writing bug first infected me I was alone with my scrambled desires, fears, and ignorance. Back then there was no Internet, no instant communication, no way of connecting with someone who lived thousands of miles away. I read The Writer and Writer’s Digest and didn’t once imagine there could be more than those monthly magazines.

What a change! Earlier this month when I attended the Ninc conference in St. Pete, I stepped into a building full of friends. Conversations went from ‘hello’ to meaningful talks about social networking and Kindle formatting within seconds. We were like the resident geese here when the local farmer harvests his hay. We attacked every morsel we could get our hands on. (At least unlike the geese, we shared.)

There were no prima donnas and, I hope, no shrinking violets. No them and us. Just a bunch of friends who’d become important to each other mostly via email.

Much of what we talked about was how to find our ways through and into the world of Kindle and other ereaders. In other words, the new world.  The amazing Joe Konrath was there to share his story as a highly successful epublished writer. Angela James, Carina’s executive editor let us in on what that epublishing venture has accomplished in just four months. The scary-smart Carolyn Pittis of Harper/Collins gave us a glimpse of where she believes we’ll be in five years.

But we weren’t there just to hear from those industry pros.  Ninc members involved with, and are developing ways for their fellow published writers to band together. No more crying in the wilderness. No more one writer against ‘the system’

I’m beyond excited about where the publishing world is going. Yes, a little scared and sometimes a lot overwhelmed. But I know where to go for answers, suggestions, possibilities, and lessons learned. Hopefully I can help by sharing some of my writing journey’s successes and failures because as wonderful it is to know that Ninc members have my back, I’m devoted to doing the same.

This is an incredible organization!!!


One comments

  1. All so very true!!