Silly title, I know.
I’ve heard it said that writing is a lonely business and in a sense, it is. You shut yourself off from the world to focus on this project. You’re in the zone. (I applaud those who can co-write with someone, although I don’t understand it. I have to be in control of everything.) You’re on your own. With that all being said, its beneficial to connect with other writers. I did my own thing for the longest time, hiding my work from all except for those chosen few I asked to read it (mostly family members), and kept to myself. But my writing became stagnant; I didn’t learn anything new and I didn’t grow. I made the same mistakes over and over again; I didn’t know any better. Only when I started connecting with other writers did my efforts in writing begin to really pay off.
Not only have I made some wonderful friends, these fellow writers are facing the same struggle that I am facing. We’re all in the same boat together, trying to navigate through the treacherous waters of pre-publication. We’ve all failed, we’ve all had our hearts broken, we’ve all been on the verge of throwing in the towel. Your family and friends will support you as much as they can as you pursue your dream, but its your writing buddies that can comprehend your frustrations. They’re the ones you can bounce ideas off of and they’re the ones who will tell you what works artistically or not. You can send your manuscripts to them and they can catch your bad grammar and misspellings; then when you send it in to an editor, you don’t look as foolish.
When you’re having a 3am panic attack about how so-and-so has had their fifth best seller published and your WIP is burning a hole on your hard drive, they’re the ones who can talk you down because they’ve been there. Heck, maybe you’ve even calmed them down.
Get a writing buddy. Or buddies. Every writer has their own strengths and weaknesses, having a group of writing buddies can help shape you into the best writer you can be. Have someone you can lean on, someone you can laugh with over your goofs, someone you can share experiences with. Writing might be a competitive business and your fellow writers might also be your competitors, but it doesn’t have to be survival of the fittest out there. Sometimes its your writing buddy who can help you get your foot in the door.
So, who is your writing buddy?