When Fiona Mcintosh https://www.fionamcintosh.com/books/encouraged me three years ago to come to her Masterclass the tipping point for me was that she would provide aftercare. In fact she she wrote “I have your back and will keep opening doors”.
Never were truer words said!
The Masterclass in itself was worth me stretching my (figuratively) short Scottish arms into my deep pockets but in terms of opening doors never could I have imagined the opportunities last weekend’s Masterclass National Conference would offer me.
Held at the spectacular O’leary Walker winery https://www.clarevalley.com.au/directory/oleary-walker-wines-restaurant-clare-valley 130 of us spent three days talking, sharing, laughing and pitching to 5 reps from the top publishing houses, two major book sellers, an expert in self-publishing and a social media guru.
Then when my dinner companions included acclaimed international best seller Michael Rowbotham http://www.michaelrobotham.com/index.asp?pagename=Books&site=1&siteid=9494
and our own local superstars Tricia Stringer https://www.triciastringer.com.au/books/and Meredith Appleyard https://meredithappleyard.com.au/ I thought I would lose my mind!
So what did I get out of it?
Lets start with Fiona’s reminder: “No One Cares.” Brutal but true. As a writer we have to do much more that just write to be successful.
Writers need to write with such dedication and brilliance that we make publishers and then readers care about our characters and their plight. We need to get readers to be curious enough about us and our books, through every means at hand, to get them away from Netflix and social media to go to their bookstore or on-line book seller to find my books. We need to be generous with our support of other writers, especially other debut writers, so that they care about our careers too. We need to care enough about ourselves to protect our writing time, even from those we love, and nurture our creative souls reading the wonderful words of those who have gone before us down the road of establishing themselves as an author.
What’s next ?
Polish, polish, polish my “Missing Pieces” (formerly Missing: A Hebridean Mystery) manuscript to take advantage of the amazing offer from two publishers to jump out of the massive whole of house slush pile into their (very busy) emails.
Get on the road with “Vivaldi’s Lost Concerto”. I have two library visits -with 4 other amazing writers - locked in already. (I’ll send details to you closer to the time.) And I’m planning a 2020 Scottish launch and road show.)
Take up an opportunity to podcast with the delightful Claudine Tinellis at Talking Aussie Books https://www.claudinetinellis.com/podcast-1.
Work out how to better use my social media with a coffee catch up with the Lisa from award winning PR company Commshake.
Plus plus plus.
Anybody with any ideas about where and how I can connect with you and your community and tribes please let me know via comments the section or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Jennifer is a writer of short stories, novels and a family history.