Thursday, June 7, 2012

Oh Go Ahead--Brag A Little

I liked the poster above when I saw it on a friend's facebook page this morning. It made me think about how often writers don't consider themselves amazing. They downplay their accomplishments instead of blowing their horn. Telling the world all you've accomplished is bragging, isn't it? And Mom told us not to be too boastful. Then again....

...for a writer, it isn't truly bragging. It's part of building your platform. If you don't believe in yourself enough to tell the world what you've accomplished in your writing life, then maybe you need to take a good look at yourself and your writing goals.

A writer who is or hopes to be published needs readers. To get readers you have to write well enough to get published. It doesn't stop there. Someone who reads your work and likes it might want to know more about you, would like to read more of your work. In today's world, people can google your name, look for a website that tells more about you and your work. It's on that website that you have to paint a brilliant picture of yourself. Go ahead and brag a little. 

List your writing accomplishments whether published works or awards or nominations for awards. If the list is long, all the better. If it's short, add to it whenever something good happens with your writing. 

All writers, well nearly all, have families and friends. They allow you the perfect opportunity to continue building your platform. When you have a new story published online or in a book, send out a notice to this group. If you have a link where the story can be read, include it. I usually add a line at the end of the announcement to the effect that if they have no interest, just hit the delete button. I don't think many do, as I often get a note back regarding the story. Look at it this way-it's not bragging, it's sharing. A lot of those people will send the story on to several others. Some people have told me they love getting a new story of mine, that they look forward to it. I admit, I hesitated to do this in the very early days of my writing, but I've learned since that I need to get the word out.

When you have a new story published, spread the word on twitter and facebook or your state writers association website. We have so many outlets to use today, unlike the writers of the past century. Use them!

So go ahead and brag a little whenever and wherever you find an opportunity. Do it with a small dash of humility tossed in and a dose of respect for your readers. Like the poster says, you are amazing but it's up to you to let your readers know that.

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