A platform, a platform, and some social networking has, as of recently, been pounded into me from conferences, writers, and different online blogs. This is an interesting topic and one that steamrolls me.
If you are a celebrated and well-known author, this really doesn’t apply to you. Not because you don’t have a following but, you’ve already succeeded in getting one. Your books, writings, speaking assignments and your cover face have already landed you your platform. You are the all-knowing Yoda and I want to learn from you. You have all the answers and the “secrets” of success.
A new writer, like myself, may struggle at getting a platform. Outside of close friends, family it can be difficult to get a platform. But of course, not impossible.
Most of my fellow writers, I perceive, want contact foremost with someone who can benefit themselves as a writer. This is how I am. Me, Me, Me and some more of Me. I love hearing about stories about struggling writers succeeding. I mean, who doesn’t! But first, I want to learn how I can succeed. To do that….I need to learn from the masters themselves. Not a struggling writer who hasn’t made it yet.
Most newbie writers want to learn something from agents, editors, and already published authors who know what they are doing. Success breeds success. If I could just touch the hem of someone who had a published book, than I could also be published. I actually had someone at a conference confess to me, “I like your stuff, but come back when you get published.” I responded pathetically, “Oh don’t worry, I will.”
Then there are those of us who haven’t yet been published. We are swirling around in a cesspool hoping someone will extend a rope down to lift us to higher ground. We enjoy talking with each other about our small success and our heart breaks. It is a roller coaster ride that sometimes leads to nowhere. But we trudge on hoping to find that rope to success.
My family and friends are a great support. As are my fellow writers. I’ve learned so much. To find a platform, you must push it forward. You must splash your face on places like twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and respond to as many blogs as possible. If you follow someone else they are much more likely to follow you. I am innately shy, which sucks in a business that can be as much about you as what you write. In the end, someone will agree to publish your book if it is good enough. Then hopefully, your platform will follow. If not…..