Listen politely to stories about the existence of another sometimes shady alternative process based on forbidden love affairs, ancient family feuds and dark money. While these stories are always fascinating, they intimidate and distract newcomers who should be concentrating on building positive and productive relationships with all the players in the public policy arena.

Rookie lobbyists can’t afford to get fancy. While there are a thousand ways to delay or amend a bill, there is only one way to get one passed—through the formal public process. Leave no stone unturned in your campaign and you will find yourself engaged in enough unexpected alliances and calculated conspiracies to write your own book.