Do you have a niche?
How do you get one if you don’t have one?
Does a writer need a niche?
Tony Eldridge has a great article on niche and what it means to an author when it comes to marketing yourself and your books.
The BlogHer group have taken these ideas a step further and put together a comprehensive social media strategy to think about when you have defined your niche/brand.
As part of looking into niche and branding, these ideas had me thinking about Author websites and blogging.
Alexander Chee has written a great post on Author blogging. Why should an author have a blog? Should you blog if you have been pressured to do it?
This is thought provoking stuff to all the author bloggers out there.
I was encouraged (strongly) to blog by a friend. As you can see my blog is not about my writing...(if I didn’t have the link to my book blog you wouldn’t even know.)
This blog is about my learning.
Since I have been blogging (just over two years, once a week) I have learned an amazing amount. I have found new friends that share some of my ideas (or humour me:) I have been challenged, stretched and energised by the blogs of others I have read and the discussions that I have participated in. The discipline to write an article once a week about my learning has hopefully made me a sharper fiction writer.... I hope that my learning discoveries have helped others.
Alexander also has part two of this article which is even better about the story that sells the story. He takes a look at James Kaelan and the Zero Emissions Book Tour and how James got corporate sponsorship and ended up bare chested on the cover of Poets and Writers magazine.
Seth Godin and his decision to abandon traditional publishing has been a hot topic across a niche blogosphere that I read this week. The decision has angered some and dismayed others. Seth’s ideas on marketing and his innovative way of publishing has given him a huge following. Linchpin was an instant bestseller and will be the last book he traditionally publishes. (i.e. paper and ink)
Mike Shatzkin has talked about Seth’s decision and what it may mean for authors and publishers now and in the future. As Mike says 'not everyone is a Seth Godin...'some of us need traditional publishing but for how long...
Two best selling authors have taken their book into social media and mixed it up. Today Neal Stephenson and Greg Bear announced that they have partnered with Subutai Corporation to deliver the worlds first digital novel on a social book platform. They are publishing a chapter a week with lots of supplementary material, all their research etc all on the ipad, iphone and ipod touch. This is story telling into the future. Of course it would be two speculative fiction guys who would do this....
Over on Craicerplus (My Amplify page) I have linked to articles on
Tension = Conflicting Emotion Article by Donald Maass.
Beware The Eyes That March-What Eyes Can And Cannot Do In Fiction
Words To Think About from A to V from the Blood Red Pencil
Two Items Needed In Every Authors Toolbox (Melinda linked to this from her blog)
Mr Rochester Is A Creep...(those weird Bronte sisters)
Making The Most Of Criticism...( a good post for those critique-ing out there)
So there you have it... a round up of my learning and reading this week. As I ask my kids every day... what have you learned...anyone want to share what they have learned this week?
pic from niche market