Before we begin, an update on some of the things I have been trying out.
Vertical Response is fabulous. It is easy to use and looks great. Can’t wait to start getting newsletters out there, but first, I need some people to sign up! There is a gorgeous picture of a silver fern to the right of this post. Click on it, and it will take you to the sign in page. It looks awesome.
I have signed up to Hootsuite, only to be able to schedule my tweets. I don’t use twitter much, but as I have big plans coming up, I really need to be able to have tweets scheduled for regular intervals, without me having to sit up half the night to do it.
So, where were we, oh yes, No 21 – become an expert in your field. Now I know many writers, whom are published, but just don’t feel like they can call themselves authors. Why not? You wrote a book and it was published. Someone liked it. But you don’t have to be a published writer to become well known. Offer to teach a class about writing. I have done this on a couple of occasions at the local school now – teaching year 2 and 3 and year 5 and 6. I got just as much out of it as the kids did. It was fun to see them get what I was talking about. The years 2 and 3, we talked about description – now these are 6 – 7 year olds. We talked about hair colour, eye colour, then what superpowers their character would have – like laser eyes, ability to fly, able to breathe underwater. The kids really got into it.
With the year 5 and 6 (9 – 10 year olds, ) we discussed editing, because it takes more than one draft to write a book. I showed them some of my manuscripts with red scribbles all over it, and explained why changing things can make it sound more interesting, or powerful.
But you don’t have to teach kids. What about adults? How about guest blogging, talking about your writing processes? Offer to talk to a group about writing. Answer questions on other blogs and forums. There are lots of possibilities out there.
Number 21 involves HARO – or Help a Reporter Out. I guess this is an American thing, but does it hurt to try it here in NZ too? Respond when someone needs a quote on your subject. How about contacting a reporter about your local writing group – or a up coming seminar about writing.
Follow up on breaking news is number 22. If a subject comes up in the media, an human interest story that you have written about, contact the local media and let them know you have written a book about it. Why? Why not? It gets your name out there. Just make sure it isn’t about violent crime or homicide – that would be rather tactless.
A pillar post is new to me. Basically it is an article that orients your reader to what you are all about. It reflects your core values or your author brand and answer a question or need. This one I had to look up – because I really didn’t understand. Doesn’t this come under the “About Me” part of my website? Kimberly recommended that you visit Entrepreneurs-Journey.com for a definition, and I think he put it better than I can describe.
“Write at least five major “pillar” articles. A pillar article is usually a tutorial style article aimed to teach your audience something. Generally they are longer than 500 words and have lots of very practical tips or advice. This article you are currently reading could be considered a pillar article since it is very practical and a good “how-to” lesson. This style of article has long term appeal, stays current (it isn’t news or time dependent) and offers real value and insight. The more pillars you have on your blog the better.”
So basically, write a series of articles about – Writing. Perhaps your writing process – how you come up with characters, how you write your dialogue, where you get your settings from, how do you plot your story. All wonderful ideas that can get you going.
I have actually been thinking about this for a while. Goodness knows I have started a few, but kind of withered off into nothing, because I don’t think I have anything special to share, but someone out there might just have a problem with picking names for a character – and I might just have the inspiration they need.
So next week, we look at offline associations, media scheduling, business advice and LinkedIn.