Once upon a time I was a filmmaker. I loved going to networking events. The free wine, the canapes, the sense of being part of something. I prided myself on being good at networking.
Then I lost my confidence and got tired of being poor and went a got a real job. I discovered, to my chagrin, that I wasn’t actually good at networking, I was just good at chatting amiably to people I knew. What’s more, I didn’t like it.
Since I’ve started writing again, it’s taken me some time to get up my nerve to go to a networking event. But I recognise it’s a necessary evil, so I steeled my nerve, and off I toddled. I made a deal with myself: stay for one drink, and introduce yourself to at least one person and you can go home. Wussy? I prefer to think of it as a useful psychological tactic.
And, goddamit, it worked. Everyone in the room seemed to be in pairs or threesomes, and it seemed like everyone knew everyone else. So I approached the one person I could see on their on, and launched in.
Whaddya know, the person in question turned out to be an agent! And she even very sweetly offered to read my work. I’ll be taking up that offer…one day. Buoyed by my success, I stayed on and I now have the beginnings of a network. Yay me!