Monday, September 8, 2014

Find Your Tribe

Over the weekend the Beyond the Trope team went to the 2014 Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Conference. We didn’t go to market the podcast – we went as a few nerdy writers looking for knowledge.

As a classic introvert I not only recognize the need for writers’ groups, I applaud them. I’m the kind of person who waits outside a party until someone I know shows up. I observe for minutes/hours/days before I participate. But once I figure out what the name of the game is, I’m fine. No more jumpy nerves. No more random trips to the car just so I can gear up for the next hour of hobnobbing (true story).

Being a member of this giant group of writers has given me opportunities I never would have found on my own. Forget the awesomeness of the podcast – during conferences and other events I get to talk to some of the greatest names in the industry. Sometimes I feel a bit starstruck, but mostly I just feel thankful. I have gained mountains of knowledge from these trailblazers, but I have also been left with the suggestion that I, too, can be a trailblazer like them.

I used to think that writers, since we tend to be such crazy loners, wouldn’t want to share information. It was silly, and now I know I was wrong. Writers are some of the best people in the world. I mean it. There’s nothing we love more than helping one another get places. If I hadn’t discovered this fact a few years ago, I wouldn’t be a writer today. I probably would have gone back to school and pushed aside my writing dreams. That would have led to extreme unhappiness, a few life crises, and many, many tears.

If you’re a writer or any type of creative person, and you haven’t yet found a tribe of crazy people just like you, you’re missing out. Go now and find them. Friends are nice, but friends who share your passions are even better. The best part? Your dreams will get bigger, and they will also get closer.

Michelle likes to rouse the rabble with a little peanut-gallery spice. She laughs at her own jokes, even when they aren't very funny. Her big dream right now is a work-in-progress about superpowers and awkward moments.

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