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You'll be happier at work when you make some friends there. Two colleagues having lunch in

In American Sign Language, to sign the word “friend,” you hook your two pointer fingers together, then flip both hands over and repeat the action. When I was learning sign language in college, the website we used as a reference said to imagine your fingers were hugging. Instead, I like to think of things connecting.

With National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), a flood of end-of-the-year releases and launch parties, and, of course, 20Books Vegas, there’s undeniably a lot to juggle in November—and that’s without worrying about the start of the holiday season. If you’re anything like me, in a month that can be arguably one of the busiest in our industry, you’ll likely be burning a candle at both ends to make everything fit into your schedule. And eventually, you’ll start to run out of wick. 

But it’s in those moments when I find my candle growing dimmer that I think back to the sign for “friend.” These events are all important to our careers as individual authors, sure. But they’re also some of the best opportunities we have to make connections with one another. Your local NaNoWriMo group might become some of your loudest cheerleaders, like they were for Audrey Hughey, this month’s featured author. That launch party you host could introduce a host of new readers to your work—and if you need ideas, check out Angie Martin’s feature on how to prepare for your first author signing event. And this year’s 20Books Vegas conference might just bring you closer to other authors and publishing professionals who will help your career soar to new heights. 

To create friends, you first have to form connections. And although this month asks a lot of us, it gives us plenty of those opportunities in return. We’ll replenish our candles next month—for now, let’s use them to find new people, exchange stories, and connect.

Nicole Schroeder

Editor in Chief

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Nicole Schroeder

Nicole Schroeder is a storyteller at heart. As the editor in chief of Indie Author Magazine, she brings nearly a decade of journalism and editorial experience to the publication, delighting in any opportunity to tell true stories and help others do the same. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the Missouri School of Journalism and minors in English and Spanish. Her previous work includes editorial roles at local publications, and she’s helped edit and produce numerous fiction and nonfiction books, including a Holocaust survivor’s memoir, alongside independent publishers. Her own creative writing has been published in national literary magazines. When she’s not at her writing desk, Nicole is usually in the saddle, cuddling her guinea pigs, or spending time with family. She loves any excuse to talk about Marvel movies and considers National Novel Writing Month its own holiday.

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