(Apologies to Kanye… Okay, maybe not.)
One of the new-to-me podcasts in heavy rotation on my iPod is Jeff Goins’ “The Portfolio Life.” I just listened to Episode #014: “Is Content Really King?” In this episode, Goins talks about Hemingway’s transition to Paris in his twenties. Why? He wanted to be where the action was, creatively speaking. He wanted to connect to the other writers of his day, share a coffee or meal with them, and get to know their secrets, what made them unique in their craft.
Goins says that creatives today need to not only make great content–that’s a given. But we also need to make great connections; we should spend time investing in a network of contacts, mentors, colleagues. People we can not only learn from but also pour into. Seth Godin calls this your “tribe.”
Andy Traub, Jeff’s co-host on the podcast, asked if Goins thought that there were other “Hemingways” who didn’t go to Paris (didn’t build a network of relationships) and thus didn’t get noticed. Goins suggested that not only were there likely other “Hemingways” who didn’t go to Paris, there may well have been Hemingways in Paris (hence the post title) who didn’t connect with the network of creative people that were around them, in their own city!
This idea gave me pause. Are there creative people around me, both in-person and online, with whom I should be building relationships right now? People who can help me grow as a writer, and whom I can help flourish creatively as well?
As I’m trying to get some momentum on this blogging thing again, and as i’m starting to write creatively again on my own, this is a question I need to wrestle with: how much energy am I putting into making connections, instead of just content? Obviously, content is vital, and I should be more consistent with that.
But let’s be real, y’all. Outside of the “Webster-Hunt-bump” in page-views that this blog enjoyed every Wednesday or so, there are only like 4 of y’all who actually read this thing.
For the record, I am grateful for every one of you.
Now go tell your friends. (Just kidding. Somewhat.)
But seriously, what can I do for you? What kind of content would you like to see? How can I help you along the way?
Please feel free to let me know in the comments below. I promise, the comment box isn’t a bear-trap. It’s an invitation. If you comment, I’ll comment back! It’ll be fun.
So here’s my invitation: Come be part of my tribe. Let me be part of yours. Let’s share some ideas.