February on OWS is all about The Business of Writing. It is the hardest part about being an author. The writing is easy, right? We love it. It’s why we became authors in the first place! But the business end is HARD. Two of the hardest parts for most authors are A. Marketing and B. Networking. Marketing is tough, even for those of us who love doing it. *Heidi waves to the crowd* It takes a lot of resources and time. And figuring out where best to put your limited marketing dollars is a trick of the ages, let me tell you! But one of the best places I have found for marketing is at conventions, particularly conventions geared around books. Those conventions can get pretty darn expensive, though. And conventions mean crowds. Most of us authors did not choose the writerly life because we love hanging out in crowds, am I right? But with the B2B CyCon you get the benefit of marketing at a convention without the massive expense. You get the benefit of rubbing elbows with readers without literally having to rub elbows! There are tons of awesome events that will provide you with evergreen marketing content that you can keep sharing, whether you choose to do a Back Porch Writer interview, Writer Wars, or a book expo spot on CyCon (which stays up until next year!) I got so much evergreen content last year. It was kind of amazing! I met tons of new readers last year, adding over 100 subscribers to my blog, adding almost 400 people to my social media sites (across Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Google + and Goodreads!) and that was with less than 1,000 attendees. This year we are anticipating upwards of 5,000! One of the best parts of B2B CyCon that seems to rarely get talked about is the networking. Why is networking important, you ask? Well, you probably aren’t asking that because you know. You were networking when you joined OWS. Why network outside of OWS? Because as awesome as OWS is (I wouldn’t have found them without B2B CyCon, BTW) there are hundreds of awesome groups just like OWS. Some are focused on supporting indie authors, some are focused on niche genres, some are focused on supporting one another’s marketing endeavors, others open you up to sharing platforms. I have already met a ton of awesome authors and groups through B2B CyCon, including Joe Compton of Go Indie Now, Joshua Robertson of Crimson Edge Press, Angela B. Chrysler of Brain To Books, Kori D. Miller of Back Porch Writer, Richard Mulder of SciFan Society, Karina Kantas of Author Assist, and tons of amazing authors who have been kind enough to share their platforms with me as I announced book tours, sales, and promotions. Those authors in turn introduced me to other amazing networking opportunities such as 20 books to 50K, Authors Supporting Authors, Support Indie Authors, Instafreebie, and many many others.  
"Don't give up! I believe in you all. A {writer's} a {writer}, no matter how small! And you very small {writer} will not have to die If you make yourselves heard! So come on, now, and TRY!" Heidi Angell’s interpretation of Horton Hears a Who.
That networking helps in many ways, not the least of which is sharing one another’s audiences and helping with book events. They are also great to talk with about what is and is not working with marketing, where to find beta readers, cover artists, and other services. The greatest support I have found is that when I am feeling overwhelmed, and like I can’t handle the writer’s life anymore, these amazing authors rally around to offer support. (I know I’m not the only one! This writing life can be SO HARD, right?) OWS is an amazing community, and part of what makes them so amazing is that they are constantly reaching out and partnering with other organizations to provide you wonderful authors with the support and skills that you need. One of those partnerships is B2B CyCon. Angela B. Chrysler of B2B is fond of comparing CyCon to Horton Hears a Who. We indie authors are Who’s. When we are all crying out “I’m here” into the vast void that is the Internet, it is hard for us to be heard. But when we join together with B2B CyCon (Kind of like Horton) then we can all yell together “I’m Here” and the readers will know.  Be sure to Register for Your Events at B2B CyCon before March 17th. [bctt tweet="#B2BCyCon is the benefit of #marketing without the expense. @hangell5711 #networking #marketing #convention #ourwriteside" username="OurWriteSide"]