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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

It’s Insecure Writer’s Group Today: Platform

InsecureWritersSupportGroup Today is Alex J. Cavanaugh’s Insecure Writer’s Group where we writer’s share our own insecurities and offer support to other writers. This a great idea really because I feel like a dork most times about what I post on my blog.

So many writers out there exude confidence, and their blogs look professional. They even know what their platform is.

To be honest, I’m not sure what mine is. I’m known to have scattered energy. I blame it on my Gemini Rising and a moon in Sagittarius. While I’m able to focus to write a complete novel, I’m not real sure about my focus for a platform.

My deceased editor once told me I was a prolific writer. But how can that be good for a platform? Maybe someone can tell me because I really don’t know.

I mean I could write a ‘how to’ blog on writing but there are so many writers already doing that along with author interviews, and book reviews. I want to be original. That’s all really.

Before I wrap this post up, I’m leaving you this quote:

“Dare to create unique and unoriginal work.Don’t worry about retracing the path of ten thousand other creators. Make the journey your own with your honest, authentic thoughts and feelings. No one can accurately duplicate that.”

Mark Dykeman

So what do you all think?

Shelly

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55 comments:

  1. I think a lot of us are insecure, in some way or another. Even those who are rich & famous (lucky dogs!)

    Finding a platform is tough when you write so many different things.

    When I began, I had no idea what my platform should be. I went all over the place, and then much later on, realized vampires is my forte.

    Eventually, Shelly, you'll find it. It's almost like trying to find your "voice" in writing--which is VERY difficult to do.

    It will come. Don't force it, or worry. Something will come to you. Or someone on the outside might give you suggestions.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Lorelei. Sometimes I think way too much.

      Delete
  2. I think your blog is unique. I'm sure your fiction writing is too. I know what you mean about blogging. I never know what I'm going to write about until I sit down to write it (which is not true for my fiction).

    I think some blogs that are inflexible about topic can get boring and predictable.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tonja:

      You're probably right. I know why I revisit yours. It's because you share yourself. So does Lorelei and I like that.

      Delete
  3. Hey Shelly, I started off blogging about any and everything and I discovered what works and what doesn't. It will come together the more you do it. Also, check out what your favorite blogs are doing in this area. The thing about writing about writing, everyone maybe doing it,but no ones experience or knowledge is the same. You have a fresh prospective, put it out there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Sidney:

      Well, I guess that's what I do. I blog about almost anything.

      Delete
  4. I love the quote and I identify with what you wrote. I feel like my blog is a bit of this and a bit of that, but I write about what interests me. I am a writer but that's not all I want to write about. I have other interests and I like writing about them. Added to that I want to work on my WIP mainly and not have to spend a ton of time designing my blog. Finding the right balance is tough.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I liked the quote, too. Yeah. Finding the right balance is tough.

      Delete
  5. Can we start a new group blogfest called "The Lost Sheep" or something? With you on how so many people have their poop together and yet I still muddle around trying to figure out if I'm ever going to have a theme or identity. Especially as it relates to blogging.

    Seriously, I don't think I can do two posts around any central theme. Guess I blog from the heart (think you do too, btw), so hopefully at least we stay fresh? :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey E.J.:

      The Lost Sheep, eh? Sometimes that's exactly how I feel.

      Delete
  6. I think if you're writing whatever's in your heart you are being original. Your platform is who you are as a person. you can be unique just by being you. I've found people respond to that best and it always makes for interesting post. Don't worry about branding yourself, just be who you are!

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    Replies
    1. J.A.:

      That sounds really better than what I was thinking.

      Delete
  7. Even I don't know what my platform is but I've never been published before and I've certainly never had an editor. (Wait does a newspaper publishing articles you wrote while still in High School count? Because that's all I got.)
    I don't think you need to define your platform, however. Can you define yourself? I don't think so.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear AvanTika:

      One, you are a published author. And no I guess I can't really define myself. Jeez, I'm a woman. We're constantly changing.

      Delete
  8. Sounds like I needed this today!

    Platform doesn't always come with the first book. I took me a while to find my place.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Diane:

      I'm so glad to hear that. My first book should be out by the fall. And I'm working on another one. A completely different kind.

      Delete
  9. Hi Shelly, just dropping by via the IWSG page and found your topic pretty interesting.

    I've never even thought about a platform. Of course, I'm not a published author either :)

    One thing I try not to do in my writing is compare myself with others. Of course, this rarely works but, to me, my only competition should be with my past works. I think once you channel that errant energy into defining your platform, you'll probably find it rather easily.

    I wish you the best of luck with it!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I think it's easy with creative types, whatever we might be, to have a degree of self-doubt or uncertainty at times.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sir Wills,

      I've quite a bit of it lately.

      Delete
  11. Platform is so hard to figure out. I know my blog is way off the charts as far as the normal author's platform goes, but I guess that's me. You just have to figure out you. And you can!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alex:

      I'll just have to keep writing then. Free write myself into a platform.

      Delete
  12. Who needs a platform when you have such a great writer's voice. Your "About Me" cracks me up! You're the type of person that could make anything sound interesting. ;) Great post!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Kimberly. I worry about stuff like this.

      Delete
  13. Thanks for sharing this. I feel like a dork for not knowing what a platform is but I am relatively new to the whole blogging thing. I found my first blog from 10 years ago - it was terrible - and I realised that I still struggle to find something interesting to share let alone find an audience. Thanks again. Cheers!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cheers to you, too, Clay. Thank you for visiting.

      Delete
  14. My IWSG post this week is along this same vein. I don't feel like we need to add to the "how to write" information, though I would love a "how to" on getting published. As you know, my blog started as a way to talk about my newborn son, but it's really just a way to get my name out...somewhere. I think that's the most you can do about "platform."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Brent:

      Yeah. Probably. It's to get our names out there.

      Delete
  15. I think if you just be yourself. Write what you feel and it will become your platform. I really don't know what mine is. I just write about my journey in life and writing. Maybe that's a bad thing. I don't know. Keep writing and being yourself.
    Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hi :)

    Just popping by from the IWSG :)

    Hmmmmm, I totally get where you're coming from. I see a lot of writers blogs and go "wow!" but..... Although I want to be different, original, I realise that that's not necessarily what people want. If you've got a few followers, they follow because they like YOU. They want your take on things, even if it's something that's been done to death a million times :)

    Personally, I try to stick to 'writerly' stuff, my journey, things I learn and some on my writing. I started my blog for me, to keep a daily record and I'm shocked that anyone else wants to read my ramblings, but it seems they do lol

    Good luck hon, it looks like you already have so loyal followers :)

    Xx

    ReplyDelete
  17. Platform, shmatform! I say, write what you want.

    I hear you, I don't have a theme or a regular schedule for my blog.

    I just like to entertain and share. Sometimes I share too much.

    Best of luck and thanks for coming to visit.
    HMG

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Heather,

      I like your platform shmatform. Very cool way of putting it.

      Delete
  18. I think the important part of that quote is the word 'honest'. If you're true to yourself, and write what you love, what you're passionate and excited about, that love of your subject comes through your words to your readers. And readers can only ever be excited about writing that the writer is also excited about. Be true to who you are and what's in your heart.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Angeline:

      That is excellent advice. Thank you much.

      Delete
  19. Don't confine yourself to a theme for your blog. Let your creativity guide you. One day you might want to write about something personal, the next it might be something you've learned professionally. The best thing to do is to let your readers get to know you.

    Gemini rising, huh? I'm a Leo (spell that E-G-O!) with my Moon in Gemini and Libra rising.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm Libra with the Gemini Rising and Sag moon. Yup.

      Delete
  20. I wouldn't worry too much about fitting into anything specific, not if you like writing a lot of different genres. A writer is a writer is a writer. New follower here:)

    ReplyDelete
  21. Visiting from IWSG (new to IWSG!).

    Great quote. Platform wise, we can only be ourselves and people will find you and follow you for that. It's worth exploring all the 'platforms' available because some authors obviously favour twitter etc don't they. But otherwise post and put it out there and it'll come together!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're the lat commenter so far and all of you are saying the same thing. Be myself. Thank you.

      Delete
  22. I really like your blog Shelly! I know what you mean though, when I signed up for this IWSG, I immediatley became more insecure than usual..most other people seemed to be ACTUAL writers, ie, authors, (even you!)...most of my stuff is just silly in comparison, but I tell myself that there is a need for silly..I never thought of declaring a platform, afterall, it's just a blog...I'm not running for office or anything.
    I do find your blog refreshing though..I like the different things you write about...and you do seem to know astrology! All I know is that I'm a Leo, (July 28th)..have no idea about moons rising, or stars waning, or anything like that. I say, stick to what you're doing, it's working so far!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Eve. I really like your blog too. It's like a talk show in writing.

      Delete
  23. Great post! I agree that most creative types tend to have some amount of insecurity. We always want our writing to be validated (even when we say it is not important). I agree with Norma, leave the platform open to write what you feel like writing. I just go with the flow and post what I want. They have to know you as a person, and you are a great person. And you are Libra? So is my husband. I'm Scorpio (so you can imagine I must drive him crazy)! Take care!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Lena:

      Libras and Scorpios get along though. My NoNo is one. And yes, she drives me crazy.

      Delete
  24. I think your writing pace could have a positive effect on your platform--I've read that the number of novels published each year by a single author is going up due to demand.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So the more novels I publish the better my platform?

      Delete
  25. All you can be is yourself. You can't get any more unique that way ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lynda:

      You always give great advice.

      Delete
  26. Ah, you have hit the nail on the head. Being original trying to build a platform is so hard! I've been trying to do so but, as you said, everything has been done so what is it left for us newbies? Well, more out of sheer luck than anything, an answer came to me: Write for a magazine. I'm currently reviewing books as a volunteer for a magazine dedicated to my genre, horror. It has helped to get me to know important people in it, to get to know what is 'trendy' and what is sooo last week; it has also helped me get my name out there within the group of readers I'm writing for. I still don't sell my books like warm cookies but I like to think I'm working on it, and the more work of mine published, the more it will reinforce the positive cycle.

    Maybe not reviewing, but interviewing, or writing 'how to write' articles for stablished mags will help you build your platform.

    Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gina:

      That sounds like great idea.

      Thanks for stopping by.

      Delete
  27. I like the quote. I had a hard time blogging in the beginning, but I guess I've found my platform now -- Egypt, where I live.

    I hope you'll come to my blog for no other reason than to tell me what a "Frag Queen" is ... I did read it right, didn't I? It's not "Frog Queen," is it? lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lexa:

      I'll be over to your blog in a few. And yes, I am the Frag Queen.

      Delete
  28. I love reading your blog postings no matter what you post. I think ppl read postings and are either going to like them or hate them no matter what choices a blogger makes.

    ReplyDelete

Let me know what you think.