How To Co-Author a New York Times Best Seller: Step 1

Step 1: Go to an unconference!

PodCamp Montreal OrganizersI was watching New York Times best-selling author, Julien Smith‘s presentation on Ustream live from PodCamp Montreal today. As he was presenting I was enjoying the back channel discussions in the chat room with some new and old friends.

I was talking with musecrossing quite a bit, I didn’t get her name (what’s your name?). She wasn’t familiar with Julien, so we were talking a bit about him. I was telling her about his old podcast In Over Your Head and about his excellent book Trust Agents.

Something struck me when musecrossing asked how Julien and his co-author Chris Brogan met. How did two bloggers meet to produce a New York Time’s bestseller?

I replied that they both met at the first PodCamp in Boston a few years ago. Just as I wrote this my friend Merlene Paynter replied: “I think Chris & Julien met at the first Podcamp Boston several years ago.” We both replied the same thing. A light bulb went off in my head about the value in these gatherings. I should mention that I’ve never questioned the value in attending, but it was interesting to think a little more about the topic.

Attending conferences and unconferences is key to building relationships. I’ve often talked about handshakes, high-fives and hugs that take your online relationships so much further when you actually meet in person.

Relationships often begin at events too. I first met Julien at Podcasters Across Borders in 2006, I don’t think we had ever met online before that. I first met the guys at Griffin when they sponsored the first BarCamp Nashville in 2007. Who knew then that I’d end up working for them?

The third BarCamp Nashville is coming to town October 17th, I encourage you to come join in on the incredible sessions and hallway conversations. Don’t be a wallflower either. Start your own and join in on discussions. Be a part of BarCamp, it’s free to attend. You’ve got nothing to lose!

By attending a conference or unconference you’ll be building new relationships, some of which will become friendships. Who knows, you may even end up with a New York Times best seller too. What’s stopping you?

<waving hi to my friends in Montreal>