Wednesday, December 15, 2010

It's not about who you know...

I've been involved in several industries before becoming a writer, dealing with the business, IT and consulting arena. Networking, building contacts and fostering relationships was a key aspect--a critical success factor if you will. I'm not talking about marketing and promotion, I'm talking about winning business and signing on the dotted line. It was how meetings were secured, how opportunities came about and how deals were ultimately made. Of course, there are other capabilities that need to be present, but I've witnessed deals being forged on the strength of a relationship alone (and I'm talking big business here). Not so with publishing. At least from what I've seen. It's the only industry I've had exposure to so far where 'who you know' doesn't seem to much matter, at least on the road to becoming published. I still think it's important to get yourself out there and network, but it's not going to get your work published if it sucks and I think it's true whether you're talking editors or agents. For me, that's very refreshing.

You also have to take into account the reputation of the publisher, but I'd think for readers, this should give a level of comfort. Of course, I could be totally and completely naive about this. Or it's possible I just don't know the right people :), but you know...I really do think it's all about the writing.


  1. Excellent post, Kaily! So true. I think networking and 'who you know' is important when it comes to educating yourself about the industry and surrounding yourself with kindred spirits. It might even open up opportunities to pitch or get you valuable feedback, but beyond that your writing has to stand for itself. If it's not up to par, it's not getting published, at least not by a reputable publisher. Like you said, their reputation is at stake and that's a big deal in this industry.

    I also agree that it's refreshing :)Funny how non-writers I know tell me I'll never get published unless I 'have a connection'. Heh. I'll show'em ;).

  2. You're right -- while connections are helpful, and can sometimes more the process along a little faster, they won't help if your work isn't up to par.

  3. I agree...unless if you're a celebrity. In which case they find someone to ghostwrite your book

    I was watching one of the "Real Housewives" shows on TV a while back and one of the women was talking about the book she was writing. The next scene showed her giving dictation to her ghostwriter. Funny!

  4. Rula, yeah I think it's important and agree about the kindred spirits. And yes! You'll show them :).

    Helen, exactly!!

    Cara, that's funny. I've never understood the concept of a ghostwriter...