Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Networking Is Just Another Word for Making Friends

Indiana Chapter of ACFW at a November Meeting
Are you networking with your fellow writers? I've heard plenty of people say they are busy writing and don't have time to "network" with other writers, but there are good things that come from knowing groups of writers. There is a time to write and a time to make writing friends!

Writing is one of those industries where knowing the community can be a good thing on many levels. Ask a published author. Each has their own story of how she connected with this person and that person in writing. Soon, like some crazy patchwork quilt, it all fit together to make this beautiful story come into print.

Like anything else, balance is good. Write in solitude. Rewrite in community. Some of my best friends, or at least those who know me best in my heart, are writers. It's a great boost to my creativity and productivity to connect with people who understand me. They connect me to the right people,but also help me brainstorm, get a chapter right, or cry or rejoice with me. We're human. We need human connections. So, I ask again--who are your writer peeps? Who is your tribe? If you need a little help connecting in that area, we are here for you, right here in Indiana. Do you write Christian fiction? Have you been going it alone and wonder if anyone out there knows some more about this, knows who to send your manuscript to, or just knows answers to your questions?

We have a national organization and this will be your first stop on to connecting to a great community of all the people you need to know in Christian fiction. Go to the American Christian Fiction Writers web page to get started. The dues may seem pricey, but you get a lot for your money, and it's actually not as much as some other national professional organizations. You instantly connect with those in your genre, those who know a great deal about writing, and all those editors and agents. You get questions answered, a prayer group, free courses every month, can connect with critique groups--and you'll make life long friends who know exactly how excited you are to make a word count.

Are you wanting to meet up with fellow Christian fiction writers in Indiana? We have a group that meets statewide a few times a year, but we also connect on a writers' loop and many of us connect locally, too. Meet up with us at our state meeting April 9th, 2011. You may come as a guest or you can join our group after joining the national group. I'm including the information for our state meeting below, but do RSVP to me, Crystal Miller, by emailing me, or you can ask me questions about American Christian Fiction Writers.

Indiana State Chapter of the American Christian Fiction Writers
Meeting time: 12:00 Noon -- 2:30 p.m. on April 9, 2011
To RSVP email Crystal Miller crystal.mrsinewaATgmailDOTcom (fill in AT with @ and DOT with .) We reserve a room so we need a head count.

There is an entry fee of $10 for non-member guests, but members who are paid up on dues get in free and pay only for their meals. All are responsible for your own meal.

The location for our luncheon meeting is now locked in at a wonderful location: Jonathan Byrd's Cafeteria in Greenwood, Indiana, just south of Indianapolis. (You can peruse their website here:
Physical address: 100 Byrd Way, Greenwood, IN 46143. Their phone: 317-881-8888.
Literary Agent, Amanda Luedeke with MacGregor Literary Group
I’m very excited to announce that AMANDA LUEDEKE, agent with MacGregor Literary Group will be our speaker. See her bio below. She will be speaking and will answer questions.

About Amanda Luedeke

Amanda wrote her first book — a picture book entitled A Cat — when she was 5 years old. Though the scintillating masterpiece never made it to bookstore shelves, it solidified her dream to one day work in the book industry.

Amanda was a 2006 graduate of the acclaimed Professional Writing program at Taylor University Fort Wayne. Since college, she's made her living as a writer, working as a freelancer for local newspapers and marketing companies, while operating her own writing business.

Her love for writing and ability to think strategically landed her a full time job in marketing at an agency in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Since starting there in 2008, Amanda has written web and print copy for Vera Bradley, Baekgaard and Peg Perego. She's also assisted in marketing strategy for these companies, conducting research, launching social media sites and proposing and working on major projects targeted at the online consumer.

Yes, she knows ... she's one of those people.

She met Chip at an author signing in Barnes and Noble in 2008. After realizing they had a commonality in Taylor University, one thing led to another, and before she knew it, she was helping him with projects, research, and all the little stuff she now assumes he just didn't feel like doing.

Shortly after, Amanda was hired on as Chip's Assistant. She handled his slush pile, worked with his authors, researched projects, did the occasional writing project and realized that she just may have found her place in the industry.

Now, on board as an Agent, Amanda brings unique interests to the MacGregor Literary team. She represents general market and CBA spec fiction, YA, children's fiction, post college-aged fiction and non-fiction, and literary fiction.

Having lived all over the Midwest, from Iowa to Minnesota to Illinois, Amanda considers the Chicago suburbs to be 'home', though she's currently settled in Fort Wayne, Indiana, with her husband, Tad.

Come join us!


  1. Yes, I winged it alone as a writer for years. I did make sales, but there was still a lot that I didn't know. Networking with other writers has provided friends far and near, plus filled gaps in my knowledge about publishing and ultimately contributed to more sales. I'm looking forward to this upcoming meeting!

  2. We have such a good group of writers from Indiana. (I know I'm prejudiced.) But also our organization of ACFW at large. :) I've learned so much and have made many great friendships with my fellow writers.

  3. Even though I live in Ohio, I love being part of the Indiana Chapter.