Need to get out of your writing slump?

Meet fellow authors face-to-face.

Writing can be a very lonely profession.

Even with technology at your fingertips—Twitter, Facebook, writing blogs, Amazon Kindle Boards—it can feel like a lot of “noise,” lacking that tangible connection we crave as creative human beings.

Since I began my writing career around two years ago, I’ve made friends with other readers and writers in Australia, England, all across the United States, and even here in Arizona (I’ll get to that in a bit).

After self-publishing my debut novel in December of last year and going back to a job I only did to pay the bills (be nice to your servers, folks!), I had a major writing slump. After living, breathing and finally publishing my fantasy novel over the course of six months, it was a bit disheartening when the reality of my sales numbers came to pass. I wasn’t getting famous. I wasn’t becoming an Amazon bestseller straight out of the gate.

And I got sad. Depressed. Dejected. Unsure of whether I had done the right thing by self-publishing. Unsure of anything, really. I was also working a lot, and barely had enough time to write—and when I did have time, I didn’t feel like it.

I also pulled back from social media, since it mostly felt like a constant barrage of advertisements or updates about those who were more “successful” than me at writing/getting married/baking cookies/being happy.

I started a novella called “Misery and Marlene,” which was in a style of writing I’d never done before, and quickly scrapped the first 10k words (it is now finished and debuting June 30th, partly due to inspiration I received meeting and talking with other authors).

Back then, I was floundering. But then the opportunity to meet with a few fellow Phoenix authors in person appeared; first was with Joanna Meyer, a newly-agented writer, Marissa Fuller, a longtime friend from Twitter, and finally, Amy K. Nichols, traditionally published and an author invited to Phoenix Comicon 2015 (her debut, “While You Were Here,” is fantastic).

After over two hours of exciting conversation with each of them, I was invigorated. It was exactly the jumpstart I needed for remembering why I am an author, reasons listed below:

1. They know what it’s like to create. Does any