Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Being Yourself as a Writer Pt.1
Thank you for all the fabulous comments yesterday! If anyone didn't get the chance to answer my questions yesterday, I'd love to hear more of your thoughts, so I won't go too far off topic today...
Let's add a twist for writers. Many industry people believe that it's important to create a brand as a writer: sure, once you're sufficiently well-known for good writing you can start to branch out and write anything you want, but as a beginner it is often recommended that writers (and, I think, bloggers) find a genre or a style or a subject matter for which they can be known, to help build an audience. Let's use retail as an example -- if you have a local store that sells clothes that you like, that flatter you and fit you well and match your style, you would keep going back for more... and you'd probably shop there LESS OFTEN if you couldn't count on seeing those items for sale every day. It would be very disconcerting if one week they sold bicycle tires, another week they sold kids' toys, another week they sold those nice clothes, and then back to tires again, or maybe landscaping equipment... the odds are higher that you will find an appreciative audience for ONE THING than for dozens.
So, how do you "be yourself" as a writer? Writers, are you dying to bust out something that your current audience might not appreciate? Bloggers, do you ever find yourself holding back about something you'd like to discuss, because you know that your blog is a "writing" blog, or a "travel" blog, or a "political" blog, or some other niche? Or perhaps, like me, you just try to find some kind of angle to make the topic work within the confines of your chosen genre?
Or did you chose your writing/blogging topics and style because they are so inherently you that this isn't even an issue for you, because you're already writing about everything you could possibly care about? Why would anyone ever want to sell anything but bicycle tires, right? Those weirdos...
Tell me more. Who are you, and how do you present yourself? And, who are you and how do you present yourself as a writer or blogger?