Wednesday, June 30, 2010

10 Benefits of Broad Universe Membership

As some of you noticed, I took a brief hiatus from blogging. I had a lot of overtime at work… and there was a lot of awesome things happening with Broad Universe! As no one has yet hooked me up with a personal time machine (or a personal David Tennant, but that's a different story…), I had to give things besides the blog priority.

But I'm back! And as it's still Writerly Wednesday, I want to share with you the biggest thing that's helped in my fiction writing career:

Broad Universe

As part of the community, I've made some amazing friends and business contacts, learned a lot, and had a place where I felt celebrated and supported. As an organization, we offer this to any woman writing or publishing in the many speculative genres through our discussion list, the Broadsheet publication, and the community we build online and at conventions. As a member, I'm supporting fellow women through our mission… and getting these benefits:

Spiffy Broad Universe Pins!

Show the world you're proud to be a Broad, unafraid to display your awesome feminine power, willing to help your writing sisters!

Ooh, shiny!

Post to the Broad Universe Discussion List

Anyone can join the discussion list on a read-only basis. That's pretty cool in and of itself because there's open calls, news about signings, releases, contests, and lots of great information about the publishing industry from brick and mortar stores to epublishing. Members get to be in the thick of it: asking questions, adding opinions, sharing news, networking with Broad editor, authors, and professionals.

Bad-ass faeries need my writing and reviews? To the laptop!

Promotion through Advertising

With our 10th Anniversary, one of the things Broad Universe has started doing is advertising. We've taken out ads in Locus,, Realms of Fantasy, and many convention booklets for the organization and to honor member achievements.

Conventions support our writers… we support conventions with ad $ = Win-Win!

Print Catalog Listing

Every year, Broad Universe puts out a New Releases catalog that we send out to convention faring Broads or Broads running local events. This catalog informs hungry readers of available books by members so they can sate their voracious appetite.

So… Many… Booooks… ~drool~

Online Catalog Listing

Broad Universe also offers an online catalog, and as we develop our brand new website, the listings will come up in regular search engines, helping more readers find books by their favorite authors, on their favorite topics, and in their favorite genres.

Gay, angel-ghost pairing… AND steampunk? w00t!

Broad Universe sponsored Local Events

From local libraries and coffee shops to the Library of Congress, members of Broad Universe have been able to meet readers and audiences beyond their genre and with the support of other members as they read, talk, and sign their books.

Enjoy an afternoon of intergalactic travel, dragons, and lattes…

Promotion via our Social Networks

Broad Universe has accounts on Facebook and LiveJournal, as well as an online newsletter dedicated to member happenings. Members can use all of these avenues to promote their work, their achievements, and any events they are running.

I can haz Broad Universe?

Rapid Fire Readings

Hearing an author read can inspire a reader to become a fan. Reading aloud effectively comes with practice… and not everyone is a big enough name to land her own reading (or draw enough of a crowd) by herself. RFRs give writers a chance to practice reading in short bits and among supportive colleagues. Not only that, the more readers, the bigger the audience, the more potential fans for everyone!

It's just 5 minutes. You can wow people in 5 minutes, trust me!

The Broad Pod

Taking the RFR and broadening (take or leave the pun) the audience beyond a physical location at a convention or other venue and into the infinity of the Internet - because, you know, orbiting aliens might be pirating our broadcasts - is the idea of the Broad Pod podcast. Give fiction-hungry listeners a taste of several pieces so they may seek out more.

Wait! They know we're listening?

Book Tables

At conventions where there's enough Broads willing to help, Broad Universe may purchase a dealer's table and cover the taxes - taking no cut of the authors' profits - so that members may have an extra venue to sell their books. Even for members who cannot make it to conventions, many of us will step up and let them mail us books to sell on their behalf.

So, we got your vampires here, your androids there… your dystopic future over here… What's your pleasure? All of them? Great!


In any case, being a member of Broad Universe has become an important part of my writing career, and I was happy to be able to renew this year with an extra donation to help women who want to join but cannot afford.

Please take a minute to find out more about Broad Universe, or share some of your stories about BU or your favorite organization that helped you in the comments!


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