1) Writers are troubled people. Have sympathy.
No one likes to promote themselves. It’s one of those things, like hemorrhoids and hair loss, that most of us will have to deal with but prefer not to discuss. (In “all” I, of course, exclude Ryan Seacrest and at least five Kardashian sisters.) But it is especially tough for writers: a species defined by our congenital habit of roaming urban enclaves with stooped backs, alternately developing variously decent ideas in coffee shops and crying into the closest gutter in fear that said ideas aren’t good enough. (I know: I make it sound so bad. It is.)
2) Everyone needs a (shhh) platform.
And yet. We’ve all got to do it. The last time I spoke with a publishing professional, she whispered the word platform so cautiously it was as though she feared anyone overhearing might realize that writers have platforms for our own self-gain as opposed to that of starving Somalian refugees or Syrian freedom fighters. She told me that, in order to have a (shhh) platform, and more specifically, in order to ever have a book published by anyone other than Amazon or my 101-year old Jewish grandmother, I should have a website.
3) Boys who make websites are elusive.
So, I set to work heeding the professional’s advice — only to realize that the one guy I know who builds websites had a vague and fleeting interest in kissing me during the summer of 2010. At present, he would seem to have an even less focused interest in making me famous. Inconvenient.
Post by Elizabeth Tannen
Writing rules. Self-promotion drools. Isn’t this how most writers think?
But as long as you view your writing as art and your self-promotion efforts as the furthest thing from art, your chances of ramping up a successful 21st-century writing career are going to remain slim to none.
These days, there’s an art to writing and an art to self-promotion. From the moment you start putting words to the page, it’s never too early to start thinking about how you’re going to share them. And once you begin to see your writing and promotional efforts as equally artful, something wonderful starts to happen: You find readers.
Books aren’t written overnight—they’re developed one day at a time. And it’s the same with our platforms, which comprise all the ways we make ourselves visible to our readers. The idea that you need a platform might seem overwhelming at first. But if you consistently take small steps to put yourself out there, before you know it, you’ll have built a strong, sturdy foundation for your work.
So, if you’re the kind of writer who prefers being read to being unknown (who doesn’t?), here are 50 quick, simple ways to launch your platform into action. Think of each small step as a giant leap toward finding readers—and a fun, rewarding opportunity to share your hard-wrought words with others.
Listen & Learn
1. Find Your Keepers. Clarify the kinds of readers you want to connect with now, and you’ll be glad you did later. First, jot down a quick list of all the types of readers you’ve ever had. Now, decide which groups you want to stay connected with for the long haul, and make them your keepers.
Post by Christina Katz