Thursday, February 18, 2010

Writing Organizations

Good Morning, Afternoon or Evening depending on your location. Last Thursday I discussed a bit about conferences. Today I'm going to discuss and ask your opinions on writing organizations.

There are several out there and like anything else you have to find the one that fits you. I belong to Romance Writers of America, (RWA). When I began my foray into writing--after wanting to for years--I didn't even know such a thing existed. Can you say green? And I don't mean environmentally conscience. I mean pretty much dumb as far as the workings of how to get published. So I Googled Agents and started at the 'A's' need I say more.

Then I found RWA and found out all kinds of information. Some good. And some bad, and some just not for me. Through the years I've learned to sort through the information, like sorting socks. The wholy ones go in one pile, the miss matched ones in and another and the pairs are the keepers.

But I've also found I don't necessarily write romance yes I usually have a hero and a heroine, but they don't always meet during the first chapter, etc. And they don't always ride off into the sunset to have little babies either.

Do I quit RWA? Not on your life. Their network is far reaching and the information about agents, editors, the industry alone makes it worth every penny. I belong to the local Utah RWA chapter. In fact I'm their president, I'm still not sure how that happened, anyway their support and friendship helps me through any writing crisis.

No matter what I write.

Did I mention I finally met my dream agent at our local Utah RWA conference last fall and have since signed with Christine Witthohn of Book Cents Literary Agency.

There are a lot of other organizations out there, and I intend to continue to explore them. I'd like to belong to Mystery Writers of America and several others. The information I have and network oppotunity the further my career will soar, in my opinion anyway.

What's your?


Cassy Pickard said...

Mary: Great topic! I belong to a list of organizations, probably too many. But, I find the bits and pieces I learn from each somehow seem to add up to a whole picture. I confess I hit the delete button many times per day as the emails stream in from all the loops, yet, there is usually something that makes me stop and pay attention.

I know the feeling of being "green." There is so much to learn. Thank goodness the folks who are part of these groups are ready to share. I need all the advice I can find.

Mary Martinez said...

Cassy, I too need all the advice I can get my hands on. I may not use it, but a lot of it I file away for when I can!

Liz Lipperman said...

Mary, another thought-provoking topic. I, too, am a long-time RWA member. Although I would never call myself a romance writer, per se, judging by the contest scores from romance writing contests, there is always enough romance in my stories that I have to take notice. I love romance, love making two totally opposite people fall in love before my very eyes. But I also love mystery. I want them to fall in love while solving a crime.

Lately, I've been been thinking there should be a genre called Romantic Mystery. I think that's where I'd fit.

I have recently joined a lot of mystery groups, and I love the advantages of being in two different organizations. Like Cassy, I don't always read every email, but the one or two that catches my interest makes the others worthwhile. Plus, it is name recognition for when my book comes out, and isn't that the name of the game?

Lindsay said...

I agree that finding the write organizations to help you with your career is very important. Just think, If I'd never joined RWA I never would have met you fab women.
And, like you said Mary, there's a lot of information to sort through 'like sorting sock'. I'll agree about the sorting throught information but not about the socks. I buy two colours-black for work, white for casual. couldn't be simpler. Then again I'm a guy.
Like you I plan to stay with RWA and my local chapter.

Mary Martinez said...

Lindsay and Liz,
Thanks for opinions all great. And what is nice there are no wrong organizations, it's all about finding what's right for you.

Lindsay I like your sock colors, that is easy. As soon as it's warm I wear flip flops and then I don't have to deal with the socks.

Liz & Cassy
What mystery organizations to you belong too?

Liz Lipperman said...

MWA (Mystery Writers of America) although I don't actually belong. You can go to all the meetings free. I also belong to Sisters in Crime and I am on a few cozy/mystery writer loops which are great. Not only are there a lot of mystery writers there, but there's a gob of readers also. They are a chatty bunch, so I do a lot of skimming, but they are great for sorting our which books to add to my TBR pile. I'll email you with the websites. if you want.

Cassy Pickard said...

Mary: You asked what groups I belong to. Well, SinC, MRW, the Guppies Group, KOD of RWA the Outreach Group, of course and, and, and. That doesn't count the loops I'm on. As you can imagine the delete button and I are close friends. BUT, I have learned tons from those great folks out there.

You've topped me again, Mary. I'm going to have to think through what I post for tomorrow!! I'm thinking it will be about my personal conversation with the great Kate Duffy.

Kari Lee Townsend said...

Groups??? I belong to wayyyyy too many groups, but it is a great way to get your name out there. Learn new things, toot your own horn, and cheer others on. I have to say there isn't a conference I go to that people don't recognize my name. There are many reasons for belonging to groups and most are well worth your while :-)