Authoring is a lonely business. It’s just you and your computer, pad, phone, or dictation device telling the story that’s in your head. The good news is that there are a lot of authors. It’s better to be alone together. 

How do you find other authors in your genre? Search for the type of books you write. Find those with a comparable number of reviews. And if you haven’t published? Look for those authors who are just starting out with one or two books in your genre.

Find them on social media within an author group. Comment and like things they post. Simple. Earn your name recognition, understanding that it takes time. The best thing you can do is watch the other authors’—plural—struggles as they work to find more readers and grow the foundation of their businesses. 

You may never have to talk with them as you learn what they’ve learned. And you’ll find that you have things to share, too, on your learning journey. Alone but together. And then you’ll find that you probably have a lot in common. 

Avoid phrases like “I’m an author too!” It doesn’t resonate with an established author. This is why it’s important to be in author-centric groups. It goes without saying that members are authors. Just like Batman, you shouldn’t have to tell people you’re Batman. Strangers, yes, but not the person who’s ahead of you in their authoring journey. 

You should avoid telling them you read their book. It makes for uncomfortable conversations unless it is simple praise. “I love how you integrated the cat and made him such an a-hole. He’s just like my cat.” That conversation is completely different. It’s not fangirling; it’s talking about specifics and mechanics of a story. It’s a conversation that authors and readers can easily share.

Don’t go this alone. Find your fellow authors and ease your way into the fold. As always, keep writing. There’s nothing like the newest book to shine a light on your other work. 

Picture of Craig Martelle

Craig Martelle

High school Valedictorian enlists in the Marine Corps under a guaranteed tank contract. An inauspicious start that was quickly superseded by excelling in language study. Contract waived, a year at the Defense Language Institute to learn Russian and off to keep my ears on the big red machine during the Soviet years. Back to DLI for advanced Russian after reenlisting. Deploying. Then getting selected to get a commission. Earned a four-year degree in two years by majoring in Russian Language. It was a cop out, but I wanted to get back to the fleet. One summa cum laude graduation later, that’s where I found myself. My first gig as a second lieutenant was on a general staff. I did well enough that I stayed at that level or higher for the rest of my career, while getting some choice side gigs – UAE, Bahrain, Korea, Russia, and Ukraine. Major Martelle. I retired from the Marines after a couple years at the embassy in Moscow working arms control. The locals called me The German, because of my accent in Russian. That worked for me. It kept me off the radar. Just until it didn’t. Expelled after two years for activities inconsistent with my diplomatic status, I went to Ukraine. Can’t let twenty years of Russian language go to waste. More arms control. More diplomatic stuff. Then 9/11 and off to war. That was enough deployment for me. Then came retirement. Department of Homeland Security was a phenomenally miserable gig. I quit that job quickly enough and went to law school. A second summa cum laude later and I was working for a high-end consulting firm performing business diagnostics, business law, and leadership coaching. More deployments. For the money they paid me, I was good with that. Just until I wasn’t. Then I started writing. You’ll find Easter eggs from my career hidden within all my books. Enjoy the stories.

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