Writers Must be Speakers
Must is a strong word, but it is true when it comes to building a career with your words. It would be nice to live in a world where you can hide out in the back room pounding on the keyboard and have all the income that you desire from the results. Who knows, maybe you WILL be that lucky one. Writers, Authors, and even Bloggers will tell you that getting out in the public and speaking to groups is the best way to grow your platform and ultimately your income.
“But I have nothing to say.” If this is a true statement, then you might as well back away from the computer right now. There is no reason to continue putting words on the screen if you have nothing of value to contribute.
“But I am afraid of speaking to groups.” If this is your excuse, then join the club. Most speakers will tell you about the gut turning feeling the get before stepping out in front of a crowd. Actors – professionals that get paid to be in the spotlight – will often say the same thing. Experts have said that speaking in front of crowds is one of the top paranoia that people possess.
“But I need to be writing.” If this is your excuse . . . well, it is not an excuse. You do have to write if you want to be a writer. You also have to make time to speak about what you are writing, or how you are writing, or maybe why you are writing.
There is always an excuse or a reason to not take that step. Building a career with words means taking that leap and stepping out in front of the crowd.
Finding Ways and Places to Share
- Local events. Many times, local conferences or seminars will allow individuals to set up booths. Set up your own booth highlighting your website. Have samples of your articles printed so people can read what you write and also include a link to sign up for your email list. Be sure that they receive a benefit for signing up (like the download of an eBook of your top posts or a Top 20 list of your best quotes or ideas). Free gifts are GREAT incentives. Setting up like this allows you to connect with readers – and even potential sponsors – in a one on one environment and can be the best way to begin stepping out.
- Send out a one sheet. Make up a list of topics you can discuss. Think of the key components of your website, anywhere that you have a large amount of knowledge about writing or blogging, or maybe just things that you are passionate about in regards to your topics or writing in general. You can have the talk already written out and then create a blurb about the talk or include the major bullet points. Send out your one sheet or write query letters that can be sent to conferences, events, and groups in your area.
- Look for audio only opportunities to talk. Start with radio (on line or in person) and look for programs that talk about or around your key points. Send those locations a query about being a guest. Radio can be the perfect way to ease into the talking path.
- Consider online events. There are multiple platforms for leading a presentation or being part of a group presentation online. Do a search for online conferences, events, and groups and then reach out to those organizations.
The opportunities abound for a person willing to seek them out. You have something to share or you would not be sharing already. You have the ability to do it because you talk every day. You can speak if you will speak, and speaking will be a strong part of building your writing career.
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Over the last few weeks, I have shared some of my thoughts and ideas about how to take your hobby and create a platform that will allow you to make a living wage. Despite all that I shared, it is not the magic bean. The ideas and suggestions are just more tools for you to create your own way.
Your way and my way may parallel or intersect at times, but your way will always be your way and my way will always be my way. The key to both is to go – move in the direction of your success. Try out the ideas and suggestions and find the path that works for you.
About the Author:
Kathryn Lang offers a phrase of hope through her columns, articles, books and workshops to shine the Light on the moment. Her personal hope is that every person who encounters her words will feel as if those words were written (or spoken) just for her. She speaks at women’s conferences, professional organizations and schools on finding purpose, being encouraged, pursuing writing, and growing relationships.
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