Jackie Hosking Networking Column 4Where to Start Networking

by Jackie Hosking



Now what exactly do I mean by the word 'networking'? I looked it up in the dictionary, because I like to be accurate, and to my surprise found that firstly, the verb 'to network' did not exist at all and that secondly, the noun 'network' could only be found as part of the word 'net'. Mind you I did use a 1983 version, however it read -

Net ~work (n) arrangement with intersecting lines and interstices recalling those of net, complex system of railways, rivers, canals etc., chain of interconnected persons or operations or electrical conductors, group of broadcasting stations connected for simultaneous broadcast of same programme.

'Chain of interconnected persons' is about as close as we're going to get so let's start from there. The first writers that I came into contact with, I met at my local Community House. John Bartlett, a freelance writer, was running a course in creative writing for beginners. That course, and those people were the first links in my chain.

I joined my local writers group and subscribed to their newsletter where I learned about local writing events, workshops (many of them free to members), competitions and other writing opportunities.

I joined my state's Writers' Centre and was introduced to an even richer writers' community.

Three years later I find myself at a Children's Writers' Forum organised by a writer that I met through a Yahoo! Group - remember them?

(see http://www.writing4successclub.com/jackiehosking1.htm  to jog your memory)

Meredith Costain was one of the guest speakers at the Forum. Meredith is a full-time children's writer who writes both trade and educational books. She is also an editor (and literary editor) for the Victorian school magazines.

The first thing that Meredith did, at the beginning of her extremely informative session, was to write on the board, in big bold letters, the words NETWORKING. I smiled and nodded and had to refrain from jumping up and down and clapping my hands with glee. Here was a highly successful author confirming that I was on the right track - what a relief. All those lunches and emails and friendships, were not only enjoyable and wonderful, but they were also adding links to my chain.

So even though the definition that I found in my twenty-year-old version of The Concise Oxford Dictionary is not the most up to date, it still enables us to understand the concept. A chain without links is, well, broken.

If you haven't done so already, I urge you to reach out and touch someone. Start your chain of connections today. Get on the InterNET (isn't language clever). Surf the WEB and find support - it's everywhere.

I spent some time, the other day, searching for places to start you off and here's what I found.

And of course if you aspire to be a children's writer then you can't go past PASS IT ON (free every Monday until July 2005. After that there will be a small subscription fee). For back issues visit www.jackiehoskingpio.wordpress.com

Until next time, happy hunting.

Your writing buddy,


© copyright Jackie Hosking


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