totally made my week -- and it's been quite the week
I joined PWAC back in 1992, after following the advice of a writer buddy who told me that I couldn't use the proceeds from my first major national article sale for just anything (e.g., groceries, baby clothes, diapers): I had to use the money for something special, like a membership in a national writers' association. I've been a proud member of the Periodical Writers Association of Canada (PWAC)
ever since, and I served as PWAC national president during the membership year 2001-2002. Some of my closest friends are writers I've met at PWAC annual general meetings. It's an amazing organization made up of fascinating people
who have one thing in common -- a shared passion for writing. If you're a Canadian freelancer who is interested in swapping market information with other writers or simply getting energized -- or re-energized -- about the world's most fabulous profession, PWAC is the organization for you.
American freelancers may want to consider joining the American Association of Journalists and Authors (ASJA)
. I belong to that organization, too, and have learned a tremendous amount about the business aspects of freelancing as a result of rubbing shoulders with some of North America's most successful freelance writers.
I also belong to -- and highly recommend -- The Writers' Union of Canada
and The Authors' Guild
to writers who are interested in "the book business." Both organizations publish excellent newsletters, booklets, and other resources that can be invaluable in learning how to make smart business decisions as a writer.
I've included links to some other resources that may be of interest to writers (both freelance writers and authors) on the Links page
of my Author Incubator
And here's an advance heads up re: a course that I'll be offering on March 4/5 through Trent University: I'm offering a 16 hour workshop over a two day period (Saturday and Sunday) entitled "Publish and Prosper: The Savvy Writer's Guide to Thriving in Today's Freelance Writing Market" This no-nonsense guide to making it as a freelance writer will cover all the basics involved in launching a successful career as a freelance writer: finding magazine, newspaper, and online markets for your work; investigating other profitable sidelines like speaking, consulting, teaching, book writing, and freelance radio or TV work; mastering the strategies that successful freelancers use to market and publicize their businesses; managing relationships with magazine, newspaper, and book editors and other writing clients; and dealing with the business aspects of thriving as a freelancer: budgeting, managing income peaks and valleys, dealing with contract negotiations, and handling intellectual property issues. So if you think you might be interested in taking this course, you may want to pencil it on to your calendar now.