How to Stay Sane and Network

Staying sane involves remembering a long list of things that have to be done before I head out again since I am taking my daughter on a Girls’ Vacation next week. So here goes:

1. Tell everyone who won the Jane Green Contest — Lisa Avila! Please send your postal address to

2. Tell everyone about the great time you had at the national conference of RWA. Boy, did I have a blast. More below.

3. Make a list of everything you need to pack for next week.

4. Finish writing the next CALLING book — FURY CALLS — about Blake and Meghan (and oh boy, are these two wonderful together!)

5. Apologize for not posting the inspirational picture you used for Mitch Lama, the hero of SECRET AGENT REUNION (you’ll see that as Monday’s Guilty Pleasure) since you couldn’t think straight on Monday after getting home late Sunday night from the National Conference.

6. Finally, the real Tuesday Tip — Networking

So, what’s so important about networking to an aspiring writer? Well, everything. The reality of it is that there are hundreds of talented people out there trying to sell either their first book or their next book. Networking is one way to improve the odds of getting published.

How do you network? Attend conferences that are geared to your writing genre. Not only will the workshops help you improve your craft, it will give you an opportunity to meet fellow authors and industry professionals.

Get to know people. Say hi and learn something about them. If it’s an industry professional, remember that they are people as well and not every encounter is meant to be the time to pitch your work. Choose when to pitch wisely.

Remember to say thanks when you do get a chance to pitch and always have your business card handy to give to them.

I spent a good deal of time meeting new people at the national conference. Some were people whose names I knew, but hadn’t met face-to-face. It was so nice to be able to finally meet them and share some time. I also met a bunch of new people and had a blast speaking with them and sharing some laughs. I hope they had a good time meeting me as well.

I’ll be sharing some photos with you in the next few days, but for now, here are some from friends and fellow authors Suzanne McMinn and Loreth Anne White.

Some of the Silhouette Romantic Suspense Authors
Silhouette Romantic Suspense Authors

Lil’ Ol’ Me at the Harlequin Book Signing
Caridad Pineiro at Harlequin Book Signing

6 thoughts on “How to Stay Sane and Network”

  1. Thanks, Pat! I’m glad to be back and I’ll be posting some fun pictures and other things from the conference. Next week I’m off again, but hopefully I’ll be able to stay in touch. Some places don’t have internet access. Shocking isn’t it?


  2. Welcome back, Caridad! We have missed you, but we know you had a grand time!
    I look forward to dropping in to visit with
    you from time to time.

    Pat Cochran

  3. The conference itself requires that you register. That gives you access to workshops, luncheons and events.

    However, there is a huge literacy book signing — this year close to 400 authors — that is open to the general public.

    Anyone one in the San Francisco area should think about checking that out.

  4. Oh well done Lisa on winning *I’m green with envy!!!!!*

    LOL Caridad, loved the post today ;o) and wow you say next year RWA is in San Francisco … mmm wonder if I should visit with the family again next year *lol* but can readers attend or is this only opened to authors/booksellers??

    Wow what a busy month this has turned out and have to agree networking no matter what industry you’re in is what takes you forward – as the saying goes “It is who you know and not what you know that puts you ahead” or something like that ;o)

    This month has also been sad month for me, on hearing that two authors dying (Kathleen E Woodiwiss and Ronda Thompson) sure going to miss there type of books.

  5. Sorry to hear you were sick and yes, there’s nothing worse than being sick at a conference. I had that happen one year and I was miserable.

    So glad you are going next year in San Francisco! It should be a lot of fun.

    As for learning, I’m always learning new things from the people I meet. Not to mention that it’s fun to sit down and chat a while with new people or people who you only get to see face-to-face once a year.

  6. Welcome back! sounds like you have a busy week ahead and that absolutely everyone at the conference had a great time. Next year I’m going, but this year I stayed home curled up with my box of Kleenex coddling my sniffles. The decision not to go this year turned out to be a lucky choice. I would have been like Typhoid Mary goes to the Chicago World’s Fair.

    I agree networking is important, it’s how I got my current job. I’ve learned so much from the published and unpublished authors in my local RWA chapter and from wonderful authors I’ve met on line ~ like you.

    Thanks for hanging out with us and sharing your wisdom, energy and enthusiasm!

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