Friday, 18 April 2014

The Social Justice Network

It's still very surreal for me. 

I'm frequently asked by interviewers and friends alike how I've managed to create the network and amass the loyal following that I have.

I'm always flattered and grateful because people don't have to read my writing or support my endeavors. So the fact that they take time out of their schedule to read my thoughts and ideas is both honoring and humbling.

April 2003 seems like only last week when I was using the invite codes to start a new blog on this wicked cool sight known as Livejournal. At the time I only had 2 readers. 

Fast forward and after approximately 11 years, 5000+ blog posts, eight articles gone viral, 14 con appearances, 3 book signing events, 2 books, an audioshort, a PSA video and countless other endeavors, it feels like I'm only getting started and having a cult following (any following) is still a difficult concept for my brain to process.

The fact that my next book, West of Sunset, is coming out on April 30, is still kinda difficult for me to fathom. He says while currently working on line edits.

Some may believe it's luck, I'm sure that's a factor, but as a wise friend once stated, there's definitely a lot of hard work, and the meeting of preparation and opportunity.

While Lady Luck may have been a factor, I certainly made it a point to stack the deck, sacrificing nights, weekends, holidays, a social life, to hone my craft and to elevate my art and career to the next level.

The irony, I never set out to build a network or get involved with social justice/equal rights. In fact when I first began blogging, I rarely discussed those issues for the sake of my mental health. Sometimes Fate can lead us down the unlikeliest of rabbit holes.

So how did the 'network' come to be where I'm constantly the go to guy for signal boosting news, resources, cross-posting articles, and multitasking with a frenzy on my iPad, Macbook, and iPhone that I feel like the male equivalent of the Oracle?

Much like getting published, I don't believe there's one set path to making connections and building an audience. I will say however, the following techniques and advice have served me well over the years and hopefully they'll do the same for you.