Networking matters

As a writer, one thing I've discovered is that networking matters.  Now, this doesn't mean to go out and schmooze like a snake-oil salesman, but to be aware of who you meet, appreciative of every contact, and to treat them, always, with much respect.  Why?  Because you never know if one of those people you meet, from the ordinary fellow to the impressive CEO, might end up providing you with amazing information to share with others via your writing. 

Mind you, this is good advice for all forms of business. 

Since I began a career in writing back in 2006, I've built a long list of contacts from business owners to celebrities.  The funny thing is, I never consciously thought of them as contacts - simply remarkable people I've been fortunate to meet, interview, and/or feature in an article somewhere along the way.  I treat everyone I meet as a new friend, and I treat them equally whether or not they happen to be famous.  If they ever call on me for help utilizing my writing skills or perhaps just to hook them up with someone else I've sort of collected along he way, then the answer is always yes.  Heck, sometimes they don't even have to ask.  I just see what person A is doing and know person B is an expert so I play matchmaker (of a sort).  Most folks find this to be an unexpected blessing; good karma if you will.  The thing about good karma is that at some point in the future, it will find it's way back to you.

Some good karma visited me recently in the form of an invitation to a screening at Austin's South by Southwest Film Festival on March 7th.  Try and follow this stream - I interviewed actor Rudolf Martin several years back (I'm a big fan - he's an amazing character actor).  After that interview, I was introduced to his fan page administrator, Silke Beischl (a wonderful lady who I now call friend).  A movie that Mr. Martin had a cameo appearance in was debuting at SXSW and she suggested that I go.  Well, SXSW is one of those huge annual events where you have to buy a pass to get into the events and such and I couldn't see buying a big pass for one event, right?  She wasn't having any of that and contacted the gentleman who wrote the movie, Scott Fivelson

Scott invited me up and made sure I had a reserved seat so I grabbed my bestie and we took a little road trip from San Antonio to Austin.  It was an adventure, a sometimes-comedy-of-errors in which you discover that no matter how expensive your GPS happens to be, it's completely worthless when the heart of downtown Austin is blocked off.  Oh, if ever you go, forgo fashion and wear some comfortable shoes because you will be doing some serious walking.

Mission accomplished.  The movie, Three Holes, Two Brads, and a Smoking Gun was reviewed.  This led to a series of articles whereby I've had the pleasure of not only interviewing Scott Fivelson, but also a few of the incredible supporting cast (made up of veteran actors) such as Richard Edson (Platoon, Stranger than Paradise, Good Morning, Vietnam, Ferris Bueller's Day Off), Rudolf Martin once again (Swordfish, NCIS, 24) - I wish he lived next door - yep, he's that cool, and Joaquim de Almeida (Desperado, Fast Five, Behind Enemy Lines).  For the record, I have to share that Richard Edson is every bit as awesome and entertaining in person.  He's smart, funny, and cool.  I love my job!  "I promise not to call you sir or Mister Edson...Richard!"

In the interim, my first review was featured on Film Industry Network, and the second review on Examiner.com.  A third with supporting cast commentary is coming soon to Yahoo Voices.

It's feeling like seven degrees of Kevin Bacon up in here!  Andt his was only part of my last ten days where contacts I've kept in network have found their way to my email.  Did I mention yet, a handsome gigolo?  No?

Well, yes!  The gorgeous Ash Armand from Showtime's hit series Gigolos reached out (I was privileged to interview him prior to his debut on Gigolos).  I opened my Twitter messages and saw "Hi, Beautiful!"  Who doesn't want to see that in their Twitter, I ask?  Ash recently wrote his first erotic romance eBook which was released out on Amazon.com through Vigliano Associates.  His fellow cast members, Nick Hawk (whom I've also had the pleasure of interviewing and who also did a fabulous photo shoot for FashionErorica Magazine while I was editor) and new gigolo Bradley Lords also wrote an erotic romance - all based on their very true and very personal experiences.  Hot stuff!

So I got to interview Ash about his book.  What better way to spend a Friday evening, yes?  By the way, he's truly a sweetheart and a gentleman.  You can check out his interview here:  Ash Armand's Sexoirs of a Gigolo Debuts on Amazon.com.

In the middle of all that, still more came through with the granting of an interview with a producer of another Indie film currently making the rounds at all the film festivals, but I won't reveal that one yet - not until it's complete. 

My point is pretty simple - first, make a good first impression!  Second, keep current with your contacts.  Now and again, say hello and/or check in to see what they are working on.  Maybe they could use some press?  Either way, let them know you appreciate them and are there should they need you - but not in stalker-ish kind of way, you know?  When you do that, when you do a good job and treat people right, those good vibes will come back to you and your network will grow...so will your circle of friends.   

You just never know where that next greeting, that next handshake will lead.



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