Colleagues or competition?

Moments before Kristen gets her tail kicked….I saw a post in one of the boards that I follow that asked if I saw other authors as colleagues or competition. I work with several writers in a critique group and in no way see them as competition. We all write in different genres and styles. We offer creative ideas and critiques of one another’s work in a very positive atmosphere. I don’t see how I could ever consider any of them competition.

When I was in the costuming business and set up at events to sell my garb to other Medieval re-enactors I had definite competitors. There were other sellers of similar articles of clothing at competitive prices. I looked at those people as competitors and not colleagues.

Even if a writer in my group was a writer of Historical Fiction, they would not be competition unless they were writing a novel about prostitutes in the Old West and Querying the same publishers and Agents as I. There are simply too many variables to make me call another author competition.

At a recent Writes’ Conference another writer from my critique group was interviewing with the same Agent as I. After speaking wit her, I realized she would probably be much more interested in my colleague’s work than mine and spent the final two minutes of my allotted time praising him and his work to her. He had a very good interview, but did not acquire her as an Agent,but got much positive feedback on his work. That is what colleagues do for one another. He is fine writer of Young Adult Urban Fantasy and in no way could be considered competition, though we were pitching the same Agent. I knew his work would appeal to her more than mine would.

When I sold costuming,  some people would come into my booth looking for garb from a different time period and I had no problem pointing them in the direction of colleagues who sold what they were looking for. Those vendors were not my competition, but my colleagues.

It is the same with authors. Our genres vary so much and storylines differ. Some self-publish and some query publishers and Agents.  I don’t know any writer I would consider a competitor. They are all  colleagues who I pass on information about publishers, Agents,and other jobs they might be interested in.

Until tomorrow, Write On!

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