Hello! Thank you for joining me today on the blog.
Today, I’m naming names!
If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a thousand times: Writing is a very lonely pursuit. I’m not speaking of the times spent on social media talking/posting about writing; I’m talking about those long stretches of time where you’re either pounding furiously at the keyboard, staring at a blank screen, or slowly but surely plugging away at your goal. It’s a solitary pursuit, to be sure.
This is why, in those times where you need advice on a plot point, a pointer about advertising, or just a jump start to your creativity, you go to your tribe. If you don’t have a tribe, I highly recommend getting one.
Every tribe is different. People play smaller or larger roles, but all your tribe members are important, because they are in YOUR tribe and they help you get through this writing life.
Note, I specifiy writing life, because your writing tribe may be different from your work tribe, which in turn may be different from your family tribe (or Fam Tribe, as my 13 year old daughter says). Point is, they are a cornerstone of that area of your life.
Today, I want to talk about my Writing Tribe, my Mermaid Squad, my Unicorn Legion. These are the writers (and “civilians” lol) who have helped me in some way throughout my writing career.
Kassanna Dwight – She reached out to me when we were both at Evernight Publishing, showed me how the “new” type of e-publishing worked. (I was running on the “two books a year” model, and she set me straight pretty quick.) She now runs the Interracial Author and Reader Expo down in Florida every year. She really gave me the boot I needed in the beginning to get started and keep going.
Lynn Chantale – Lynn was and is always up to hash out plot points. I can message her with the wildest plot: Say, a cat, who’s a shifter cat, like a Maine Coon. So, if they met a werewolf, how do you think they’d get along? No plot twist is too outrageous. She will work with me until it’s hashed out!
Mya Lairis – I met Mya when I got on with Loose Id (which is sadly, no longer in existence). I was so impressed with her body of books, and found her werewolf books to be refreshing different. She’s also good for a “what if” scenario and is super encouraging. Plus, she crochets and has great cats! She is the driving force behind Colors in Darkness, which is a group that focuses on horror, dark fantasy, and speculative fiction by people of color.
Eden Royce – Another publisher match – I “met” Eden when I had a book with Mocha Memoirs Press. An editor as well as an excellent short story writer (her work has appeared in magazines such as Fiyah and Strange Horizons), she’s also good for a fast turnaround beta read. Like within a day on a short story. I mean, we know how that goes, the story is hot from our twitching little fingers, and boy, we need someone to read it RIGHT NOW!!
Shyla Colt – Who doesn’t love a crafter? Shyla writes, makes soap, corrals children, and still finds time to offer encouragement on the (sometimes) weird stuff I want to write. Who gets messages where they have to clarify as such: “Okay, so he’s a unicorn shifter who works on a cardboard factory at night and is a vigilante on a motorcycle by night? Yeah, that works! Write it! LOL No plot or creature is too strange for us writers!
Taige Crenshaw – I’ve only recently met Taige, but the effect she has had on my writing life has been simply phenomenal. For the first time in yeeeeeaaaaarrssss, I’ve got a writing schedule that makes sense. I’ve got books that actually relate to each other. No idea is too far fetched for Taige. She has an answer for nearly every writing issue, and is overflowing with tips, tricks, and encouragement. Didn’t have a good writing week? Taige will give you exactly one pat on the head, and say “Now, how are you going to change going forward?” It’s all about taking action to improve the future instead of wallowing in past writing mistakes. She gives her time, and her vast, vast, VAST experience in the publishing world. She is a prolific writer who knows how to put words to paper and I am so happy to have met her. (Check out her site Designer’s Edge Ink for information on coaching and courses etc. You won’t be sorry.)
So, there you go. My writing tribe. The people above are important because they either held my hand and nodded or put a foot in my behind when I needed it.
Having a good tribe of positive people around you is more important than you can imagine. They drag you over the rough spots and cheer when you succeed. This is so important when you’re working by yourself most of the time.
So…who’s in your tribe?
Till next time,