*Ask and Ye Shall Receive! Several people asked me if they could subscribe to the blog to have it delivered to email and I finally figured out how to do that! (And by “figured out” I mean that I had someone set it up for me.) Enter your email in the box to the left to have posts sent straight to your inbox.
Yay technology! And Yay people who know how to use it better than I do!
Carry on, then…
I am not a planner. I’m not really sure how it is that the personality cards fell as they did given that my mom is a planner times fifteen. She plans when she’s going to plan. It’s something to behold.
I’m assuming I got the fly-by-my-seatedness from my dad. Maybe? Dad, am I right?
(I’m pretty sure I’m right.)
Because I generally tend not to plan very far in advance, I always feel like I should get some sort of recognition or medal on the rare occasions when I am super prepared. Those moments are few and far between and quite frankly, I find it exhausting to organize for the future. It’s a wonder I get anything done at all.
I have been in a noticeable blogging funk lately. The blogging world has evolved and changed quite a bit in the last five years. People want their information faster, shorter, and much more visually than they did before. Niche blogs are the focus right now – Foodies, decorators, DIY-ers, and coupon-ers. Blogs that offer a short burst of information, helpful to every day life, and complete with pretty pictures are what the masses want when they open their computers.
It’s hard for the story tellers to keep up.
This year, between fighting depression, finishing my novel, editing my novel and now pitching my novel, I haven’t really been able to fuel the flame of successful blogging – particularly because I’m one of the story tellers who feels like she’s swimming outside the niche.
(SIDE NOTE: I’d like someone to create a band and name it Swimming Outside the Niche. Then make really cool, funky jazz with just a hint of coffee shop flare. And if you do, please send me one of your CD’s for free. Thankyouverymuch.)
Alright, so where am I headed with all this? For the past three years, my friend Myquilin, better known as The Nester, has done a 31 Days challenge. The idea is to stretch yourself and write one post a day throughout October on one topic.
I tried to do this last year, but I literally decided to jump in on October 1 without any clue of what I would write about. (Please reference the opening paragraph regarding my lack of planning ahead.)
Needless to say, I didn’t do a great job. My topic was difficult to define, a bit ambiguous, and I had no idea how to generate 31 posts out of it. By the end of the month, I chalked myself up as a failing 31 Day writer.
But time heals all failures, and it’s another year so I’m going after it again, and do you know what I did last night?
I outlined my entire 31 Day series!
Someone give me a medal, quick!
Now for some, I fear my topic may be a little dry. You might not be interested, but I hope you’ll still follow along because I think you’ll enjoy learning the ins and outs and tricks of the trade I plan to share. What is the topic?
At first I worried that it would be pretentious of me to write an entire series on becoming an author, but then I quit shaming myself for the skills and experience I’ve gathered on this topic and embraced the fact that I am indeed qualified to write these posts.
So write them I will, and I am ridiculously excited to do so. At this point in my blogging, I need something a little more concrete to write about. I need to focus less on trying to think of funny stories, and more about the business and art of creating story (although plenty of humor will be thrown in, because you know I can’t help myself…). I would love it if you’d follow along as we cover such topics as:
- What makes a writer a writer? And what makes a writer an author?
- Writing with Purpose
- The Mechanics of Fiction
- The Mechanics of Non-Fiction
- Character Development
- Setting Fees
- What To Do When You Hit the Inevitable Plateau
And there will be so much more. We’ll cover how to find an agent and how to find a publisher, manuscript lengths, and how to write a book proposal that publishers will want to read.
I was at this writing gig long before blogging became popular. Before I finished my own novel, I helped others develop and sell their novels. I’ve written book proposals that sold, and book proposals that got thrown into the mush pile because they stunk. I’ve ghost-written several books and co-authored a book, and I made countless mistakes along the way.
I love writing, and I love to see others reach their dreams of publication. So for 31 Days, we’re going to explore this topic together.
Well, what do you know…I think I just found my niche.
I’ll link up each 31 Day post as I put them up. I reserve full rights to change, edit or move these posts around because there’s a solid chance I’ll have to do that!
31 Days to Becoming an Author:
Character Development: Creating Layered Characters