Ive been reading Get Known Before the Book Deal by Christina Katz.
Ive seen her other book, Writer Mama but Im already doing fairly well as a writer raising a family (I do an inordinate amount of screaming and yelling and ordering people out of the room but Im paying the bills…lol) so I didnt see the need to buy that book. Of course that might change.
But I saw a tweet of hers about the Get Known book and thought… What the hell…
I write about crime, inmates, and women on death row. Its important to me for many personal reasons but also because the death penalty is just plain wrong. Ive been doing it for over five years. I planned to write a book about my experiences with the women on death row but then three things happened to me that stopped me dead in the water-
My mother died of lung cancer and I sat and watched it. Its a heartbreaking, earth shattering thing. Not long afterthat I had a person I thought of as a dear friend try to ruin my life after she used me incessantly for years and then my father died of lung cancer.
I was emotionally drained and it was all I could do to just make enough money to pay my living expenses. It seemed life kept firmly sticking its celestial finger in my solar plexus and giving it a good jab just for the hell of it.
Any way- back to Christina. My book was a dream I let go a long time ago. Life had taught me the lesson that I was no one to have any dreams. Just give it up Kelly and do the 9-5 thing and realize your just another writer out there. No one special. I bought Get Known Before the Book Deal because I wondered if my work Id done so long ago could be revised at all. If it was still valid platform building work. I wondered if it had been working for me all the while I was giving up on it.
I read the first few chapters and realized I did have a platform for my book. I have the website that gets 1000 hits or more a day, my blog gets several hundred a day and my articles at Ehow and Associated Content on the subject are hit on every single day. Hmmmm…
In Chapter 6 Christina talks about crafting your niche. I almost skipped over that part. I have my niche crafted for me. Its the women on death row right? Wrong. I read on and discovered I didnt REALLY have a niche. While women on death row is a fairly small area of capital punishment it isnt a real niche. I went back and made a few changes to my blog. On page 38 she talks about condensing things to make yourself more accessible to the public. I took that advice (or I have started to.I think this will be a process) and then I updated my contact information and changed things around a little.
The very next day I received an email from a lady in Australia who said shed found me through my Ehow articles and then my site and blog. She had questions about how to find an inmate she was interested in writing about and how to go about it. I thought, Holy Shit. I think I have a platform. I think I have the beginnings of a platform, at the very least I am doing on or two things right.
So just for shits and giggles, why dont you follow me while I follow her advice and see if this thing really works out for me! Oh, and wishing me a little luck would be cool too.