In the last two weeks, strangers, old junior high and elementary school friends, and even the principal of my junior high school who reads historical fiction, have contacted me just because I've established a web presence. And a week ago, I met another wonderful writer who's as interested in the Norman Conquest period as I am, and we've talked on the phone and exchanged emails since then. Most of my writing friends have always provided me encouragement, but there's no denying the thrill I get when a stranger or someone unexpected stops by my website, personal blog or any of the other sites I contribute to, just to say, "I love what you're doing and can't wait to read your published works."
In September, I'll be attending the Writers' Digest Conference: The Business of Getting Published, where a few of the sessions will be on building an effective author website, and marketing and promotion. Clearly, an Internet presence is key to establishing a writing career, especially now that publishers spend less than in the past on promoting authors. I'm excited to learn more, so I can hit the ground running when I get my first sale.