Are You The Kind Of Writer Who Is A Loner?

By on June 17, 2015
Are You The Kind Of Writer Who Is A Loner? - Writer's Life.org

In publishing, we’re constantly asking writers—typically a rather introverted bunch—to get involved, to engage, to network, to join groups and go to conferences. I often find myself wondering how many of you cringe every time you hear that kind of advice.

Maybe you’re not into the whole publishing “scene.” Maybe you don’t enjoy being in a critique group where people discuss your work.

Maybe you don’t want to be part of a crowd, you don’t want to go to workshops, you don’t think of writing as a group activity. 

Maybe social media is not your thing. The thought of promoting your book gives you hives. You don’t want to be a speaker or a blogger or a Facebook expert.

Can such a person find success in publishing?

Yes—but these days it’s rare.

You’d have to be pretty darned talented to begin with. If you’re not going to workshops to learn, and you’re not getting feedback on your work, then in order to snag an agent and a publisher, or even find a large audience through self-publishing, you’d have to be writing amazing stuff without benefit of the collaborative process. There are definitely some writers who can pull this off. You may be one of them. The only way to know is to try it and see what happens.

There are still stories of writers getting their agent through the query process, without ever networking or getting a referral or going to a conference. But eventually you’ll need to build an audience for your book, whether you’re with a publisher or doing it yourself. You are going to have to engage with your readers and potential ones.

Most of that can be done online, so if you’re at least comfortable with blogs and social networking, you should be able to market yourself just fine. You don’t necessarily have to be “out there” promoting except in the virtual world.

For all the emphasis on critique groups and workshops and conferences, we recognize the reality that not all writers are cut out for all that. While this kind of involvement does offer terrific advantages for those who are able to do it—and there are some people who would never find success if they didn’t avail themselves of every possible resource—all is not lost if you can’t.

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In the past, writers have told me they can’t afford conferences, or don’t have access to them because they live in a remote location. Some have said they haven’t been able to find a critique group. I tell them it’s up to them to find success despite the limitations.

But I rarely hear from writers who say, “I am not interested in all that group stuff. I am a writer! I sit in my cave and write — by myself. I have no desire to do it any other way.”

If this is the case you might want to consider self-publishing as well. "How to Get Published, Sell Books & Attract Tens of Thousands of Readers by Selling Your Content on Amazon’s Kindle” (CLICK HERE), which is a webinar that we put together that teaches writers how to publish to Amazon's Kindle Directory and also market, promote and sell their work.  Imagine the freedom!  No agents, publishers or editors manipulating your copy in ways you don't want!  Best of all you get most of your own royalties when you become a self-published author.

Today’s your chance.

This post by Rachelle Gardner was originally published under the title Are You A Lone Ranger Writer at http://www.rachellegardner.com/lone-ranger-writer/

About Donna Best

One Comment

  1. Elle Ay Esse

    August 28, 2015 at 1:26 pm

    I don”t know that I would say I am a loner, exactly. But as a busy mom of a pre-schooler who runs her own business I don’t have a lot of time to get out and hang with others. When I am writing (fiction, not for work or personal blogging), I tend to live vicariously through my characters so I guess that’s kind of lie being a loner.

    Thanks for sharing this great post!

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