Monday, January 18, 2010

Published Authors' Friends

I was reading a buddy's blog today and remembered something Lyn Stone said during a speech she gave my writers' group. That when you become published, you find out who are your real friends. She had "friends" say things like "When are you going to write a real book," "Since you're home all day, why don't you volunteer for this and that," and ask "How much money did you get paid?" Others said she'd become stuck on herself while others snubbed her. It's amazing how stupid people can be. If you ever have the opportunity to meet Lyn, be sure to say hi. She's a darling sweet lady and talented too.

People like that are not true friends. Friends celebrate milestones good or bad. Sure, there are probably authors who let their first or hundredth book go to their head, but they're rare. Thank goodness.

I know I'm not always a good friend to my published buddies. Sometimes that ugly mean green-eyed monster (envy) gets the better of me. Then I try my best to do something extra nice for them or I stay away. The only problem with staying away is letting too much time to pass without keeping in contact with that friend. Even published authors need their friends from the days before. I just make sure I don't use them. You know. Like asking them for critiques or introductions to agents/editors. If they offer without me asking, of course, I would most likely accept but never ask. That's putting a strain on your relationship with them, placing them in an uncomfortable spot.

Having a friend is more important. Considering how much I want to be published that says a lot.

It doesn't mean you can't name drop in a query. And I don't mean like telling an editor or agent the author told you to send a manuscript to them when she didn't. That's a no-no. Plus the editor/agent is most likely to ask the author if they did. You can imagine what the editor/agent would think of you to find out you LIED! Not counting you'll lose a friend.

What I'm talking about is like "I've heard of the good things you've done for AUTHOR..." Or "It was fun sitting at the table with you and AUTHOR at the conference." You get the idea.

Well, I better email my buddy. I've neglected her lately.