At the Left Coast Crime conference I learned about Sisters in Crime, a national organization with 48 chapters offering networking advice and support to mystery authors. One of the members of the Capitol Crimes chapter invited me to attend the next meeting. Today I went to the meeting in the Rancho Cordova Library. It was hugely inspirational. The meeting started on time (I was accidentally late) and so I was a bit confused because the room was empty except for everyone's purses and Katherine. The members were volunteering in the library for 30 minutes--it looked like they were shelving books. It gave Katherine a chance to give me a quick orientation on SinC and "Guppies" (Great Unpublished), a subset of SinC members.
Soon they were back and we did a nice round of introductions with people encouraged to shamelessly plug their books or short stories. A few people introduced themselves as avid readers. The chapter is publishing an anthology of short stories, so if I come up with a short story idea set in the greater-Sacramento area I can submit it for consideration.
The main event was a panel of self-published authors explaining the nuts and bolts of e-publishing. I have read how technology turned the music industry upside-down. First Amazon, and now the e-reader is doing the same to the book publishing business. For a person who enjoys writing and does not want to learn marketing or is phobic about the internet, this turn of events is not welcome. For the more entrepreneurial, it is an opportune time to be a writer.
I am finding it all so interesting, energizing and fun. The absence of economic pressure is a terrific blessing. I can explore this on my own terms and I have the time available to invest. I believe if I can keep my focus on creating a good story, enjoying the writing, and experimenting with the publishing side, I will remain sane. If I desire writing the next best seller, or making as much money as JK Rowling, or some other worldly byproduct of publishing, then the fun will likely go right out of it.
Taking these steps also feels in sync with my redesign.
Check out: www.sistersincrime.org (membership $35 fan/$40 professional)