Today, we’re thrilled to have Margaret Dilloway with us. She’s the author of the upcoming novel, SISTERS OF HEART AND SNOW, (Putnam, April 2015) about two estranged sisters who are inspired and brought together by reading the history of real-life 12th century samurai woman named Tomoe Gozen. She is also the author of the middle grade fantasy novel MOMOTARO (Disney-Hyperion, 2016), as well as THE CARE AND HANDLING OF ROSES WITH THORNS and HOW TO BE AN AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE.
Publisher’s Weekly has this to say about How to Be an American Housewife:
In this enchanting first novel, Dilloway mines her own family’s history to produce the story of Japanese war bride Shoko, her American daughter, Sue, and their challenging relationship. Dilloway splits her narrative gracefully between mother and daughter (giving Shoko the first half, Sue the second), making a beautifully realized whole.
For the typical introverted writer, the hardest aspect of the job (besides, you know, actually writing and getting published) is networking. Yes, you have to network in your writing job exactly as you do at any other job. Establish relationships, form friendships, and help each other out.
But this means you have to pop up out of your dark little hidey hole and actually talk to people. (Or at least talk online). Everyone has to do it, because every writer at some point will need help from other writers in the form of blurbs, advice, cross posts, or getting the home address of a new agent (kidding).
Unfortunately, nobody writes the unspoken Rules of Networking down for anyone, so either you’re naturally good at it, or you have to observe and enact the secret customs, or you’re terrible at it.
Now that I’ve crossed the bridge to the other side and become a published writer, I’ve kind of gotten to know some of these unwritten rules. And now I’m on the receiving end of strangers asking me for favors out of the blue. I thought it would be helpful to write some of these rules down. Say them aloud. Discuss them.
The most important thing to remember when you approach another writer is that you want the other writer to feel respected. Ever used that dating app, Tinder? On Tinder, if you express an interest in someone who’s already expressed an interest in you, you can send each other messages. (Disclaimer: I’m not on Tinder. I swear). You might get a message saying, “Hey, beautiful, I want to spank you, meet me at my apartment in 30.” If you’re looking for a long-term mutually respectful relationship, then that message will be a turn off.
Same thing with networking. You want to approach someone with the intent to have a long-term mutually respectful relationship, not with the goal of using them for your means, then discarding them. I mean, take me on a date before you invite me back to your place, for goodness’ sake!
So please. Take the time to get to know the writer a bit better before you start bombarding him with requests for favors. In other words, treat the writer like you would your friend with a truck. Everybody wants a friend with a truck to help him on moving day. People with trucks don’t want friends who only call them when they want to use their truck.
Do’s [Read more…]