Navigation menu

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

It May Not Look Like Work...

Have you ever wondered if all that time spent on social media or even sallying forth to make actual live connections makes any difference in your writing career? I mean, here you are, hard at work, but does it matter? Really? And then I have a couple of weeks that feel like a genuine pat on the back.

The other night I spoke to a women’s group about my writing life and the circuitous journey I took to becoming the writer I am today. So I brought a lot of my Chicken Soup for the Soul books because my life stories are shared in those books. And I sold every last book!

But I wouldn’t have been at that meeting if a friend didn’t read my blog posts regularly and had the thought that I’d make a fun speaker for her group. And she wouldn’t haven’t seen my blog posts if I hadn’t shared them through my social media networks. I often tell people that I stay on my social media networks for work and they look at me funny, like “Come on, Cathy, we know you’re just there for the singing dogs.” Well, of course I’m there for the singing dogs. But I’m also there, working.

And then a few weeks ago, when my SCBWI region appeared at the Decatur Book Festival, I worked in our tent for promotion and hobnobbing and eventually, cleanup. A friend gave me a handful of big bottles of bubbles we didn’t use and asked me to take them to my church preschool.

So I dropped by to see the preschool director, an old friend and co-worker of mine, to give her the bubbles. And we talked about children’s books, naturally, and that mine were for Korean kids. But, I told her, my friend (the one who donated the bubbles) had a board book. “Give her my card,” she said. “We’d love to have her.” And my friend will be doing a story time in the next week, and will probably sell lots of books, too. So there we all were, connected in a friends-helping-friends way. But we were also working.

Also a few weeks ago, a writer friend was coordinating a panel presentation of kidlit authors and illustrators. But all she had signed on were picture book creatives. And I remembered that a friend of mine—a YA author—had recently moved back to my area. How did I know? I’d seen all her comings and goings on social media.

We needed a published author of novels and my friend was happy to help with the panel because she needed to get back in the writer swing of things. She had been using social media to let her friends know she was home, but yep, she was working, too.

So you never know, right? It might look like piddling around, being out there on social media. Or it might look like a long lunch with friends, or a delightful happy hour at a conference. But that’s work, y’all. I can’t help it if it looks like fun.

~Cathy C. Hall (Hard-at-Work)


  1. Love this post which proves how interconnected we all really are. I told those in attendance at my workshop, you never know how far a reach your words will have.

  2. Yes--you never know. I know that I've had things like this happen to me. I think one time I spoke at a middle school, which I had never targeted with my school visit presentation, because Sioux recommended me--and I met her in person at Saturday Writers and of course on here.

    I think this is true in every aspect of our lives. I've been noticing more and more lately that if you start making a step forward in your life, and sending out good vibes, opportunities and good vibes generally come back to you.

    Awesome post!


We love to hear from readers! Please leave a comment. :)