Day 17 - No Writing Today, Researching Writer's Platforms
I'm not going to try to defend my lack of
writing yesterday. I didn't write - not a paragraph, not a sentence, not a word.
I own the fact that I did not make the time to move my story forward.
It sucks! But, it happens to most writers
at one time or another. The important thing is to not make excuses - "oh,
I had x, y, or z going on yesterday, otherwise I most certainly would have
gotten some writing done."
Sorry, but there are no justifications for
not doing your job. At the end of the day, writers must hold themselves
accountable for their writing. Whether you have an editor breathing down your
neck or simply a group of supportive friends and family, you, dear writer, are
the beginning and end of the work. No one can do the work for you, and no one
is responsible for it getting done except you.
So, today, I will pull myself up by the
bootstraps and make time to write.
Instead of Writing
did I do instead of writing yesterday? Well, I'm glad you asked.
spent my writing time yesterday researching and reading about creating and
building a writer's platform. If you've been writing and selling (or trying to sell)
your work for awhile, you probably know all about this concept. However, if you
are new to the world of publishing and self-marketing, then you are probably
not familiar with the term.
writer's platform is the public, online, and publishing presence writers build
for themselves. Not only do you need to write a kick-ass story that people want
to buy and read, you also have to take the time to get your name and ideas out
there for other people to see. Unless you plan to go the self-publishing route,
publishers expect you to have the drive and tenacity to get this done.
you may be thinking this is a case of putting the horse before the cart, but I
assure you it is not.
it is election time around the country, look at it this way - being a writer
who hopes to be published is much like running a political campaign. Name
recognition is important, but the ability of the voters (publishers) to find
out about you, your ideas, and brand (platform) is imperative.
Susan Grigsby, one of
my writing mentors, has told me many times about the importance of
self-marketing, particularly online. To paraphrase Susan:
publishers will look for you online if they are interested in your work. They
want to see that not only have you taken the time to build an online presence,
but also that you have the technological skills to do so. If the choice comes
down to two authors, one who has a strong online presence and one who doesn't,
they will choose the one with over the one without every time.
fact of the matter is this - publishers only spend marketing money on their top
selling authors. The remainder are expected to market themselves and their
work. This is where building your writer's platform comes into the picture. In
my personal research of a wide assortment of publishers, I have found
approximately 25% (particularly smaller presses) ask about either what you are
willing to do to help market yourself (readings, conferences, workshops, ETC)
or what platforms you are currently active on (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, ETC)
- more often than not, they ask both.
Resources for Building Your
my research yesterday, I found some good resources to share with you about this
important facet of being or becoming an author.
Janet Cannon has an excellent article about
building your public presencehere.
am going to have to work on this process. I tend to get lost in a time suck
when I enter some of these online forums. I need to streamline the process. I'm
looking intoHootSuiteto help with that (fingers crossed).
now, I'm imposing time constraints on the amount of time I spend in these
online endeavors (because there really is no point if I never finish this
book). The way I figure it, if I can't accomplish what I need to in an hour,
I'm not doing it right.
going back to my writing. Yesterday, I encountered a stubborn little girl who
insists her story be told differently than I first saw it in my head, so I had
better get to it.