Ack! Why did Thursday equals my day to blog not connect in my brain until this morning?
I can see my own face on a wanted poster now! Please, Eli, give me a few more minutes to be witty and entertaining and thought-provoking ...
Here's a timely topic: how does volunteering in your local RWA chapter or running for National office help your career? Huh? you say. I thought being an officer or liaison or conference chairman took time away from my writing.
Well, it does take time. However, you can also look at that time as an investment in your writing career. Being a chapter officer gives you immediate stature with other chapter officers around the world. Those are friends and contacts who will remember you--hopefully in a good way--when you sell a book. That gives you a worldwide audience of potential readers.
Those are writers who remember you being a welcoming face at a booksigning when no one else showed up. That same writer is now a New York times bestselling author who writes a marvelous quote for your first release or recommends you to her agent or editor.
Those contacts give you the opportunity to make presentations to different chapters or write articles for newsletters that will be read by--you guessed it--potential readers.
As an officer, you will become more confident in speaking in front of people and making decisions that will benefit the entire chapter, not just one person. That thoughtfulness, negotiation and tact can translate into skills and confidence to promote your books.
And lest this all sounds selfish, one of the biggest benefits for me when I was a chapter officer was the chance to make new friends and support other writers. Romance writers are some of the warmest, most giving people I have ever met. Who wouldn't want to meet more of them?
How about you? We're voting for National officers now. (Yes, I still need to do that!) But maybe you want to consider being a National officer at some time in the future. And elections for our chapter are coming soon. Maybe you want to invest some time that will benefit both you and others. Think about it...