Developing a Platform~ Guest Post

Thinking about Thursday

Developing a Platform
Guest Post By
Writing Coach 

Many writers realize that nowadays we have to have a platform. One really great way to build platform is through public speaking. However, many writers shy away from this because of fear of talking in front of large groups. While public speaking can be done in person, consider other options such as online workshops, webinars and other ways of speaking to a group without standing in front of a group.

Once you’ve gotten over that hurdle or determined where you’re going to speak or you’ve been invited to speak, the next thing a writer needs to determine is what they’re going to talk on. I suggest that writers write on something that’s related to the topic or what the theme of their book or the research associated with their book and their genre, without speaking directly to the writing process.

For an example, if you’re a suspense writer and your book is about kidnapping such as Amy Wallace’s was, she did a wonderful job of teaching and speaking and having a website surrounded around safety for children and protecting your kids and the FBI and things like that. While reaching out to people who are interested in the topic of her book she did not specifically talk on her book.

Another example would be if you write Regency romance, such as Linore Rose Burkard. She has a wonderful website and offers things like information on clothing of the era and social mores and etiquette. Therefore people who are interested in that time period can get valuable resources from her and also will begin to develop a relationship with her and read her books because they know her and they’ve seen her stuff.

As a writer consider speaking on topics that are based on the research that you’ve done for a particular book, novel or industry, and not just be like you need to speak about your book specifically, about publishing specifically or publishing journey specifically.

Engage individuals who are interested in the topics that you cover in your book and that will help you develop your relationship and thus your platform.

Thank you, Tiffany, for those great suggestions. 


Tiffany Colter has been published locally and nationally. Her publishing credits include Charisma Magazines, Suspense Magazine, Today’s Christian, Encounter, On Mission and The Toledo Business Journal. Online she has a successful blog that teaches business principles to writers the Writing Career Coach and she writes a monthly Marketing Column and a quarterly Feature for the Afictionado E-zine. Suspense Magazine regularly publishes her work in their “Ask Your Writing Career Coach” column.

She teaches on topics as diverse as Writing for Small Business Owners to Special Needs Adoption to Thriving during Financial Crisis. Her speaking is managed through Command Performance Speakers’ Bureau.

I happen to be an exception to the "writer=introvert" rule because public speaking has never bothered me, but I know there are people who fear it worse than death.  

So, what about you? Does speaking in front of people make you break out in hives? Or do you love being in the spotlight?

FIGHT! Guest Post By Rayne Hall

Tell Me Your Story Tuesday
 
FIGHT! 
Today, We have a great guest post from 
Rayne Hall. 
Rayne  writes dark fantasy and horror. She has published more than twenty books under different pen names in different genres, and her stories have earned Honorable Mentions in 'The Years' Best Fantasy and Horror'. She holds a college degree in publishing management and a masters degree in creative writing, and teaches online classes.

Even if you've never wielded a weapon, you can write an exciting fight scene.
Rayne will show you how, in her workshop on 
which starts on 1 June 2011: 
You can find out more about the class here


The Final Showdown
How to Write a Great Fight Scene for the Climax of Your Book

Does your novel climax with a big showdown between the hero (or heroine) and the villain?
Here are techniques to make this fight powerful and memorable.

* The fight scene during the novel's climax is longer than the other fight scenes in the book. It is also the more violent, and the more emotionally rousing.

* Raise the stakes as high as you can. The climactic fight is almost always to the death. In addition to the hero's life, something big is at stake, something he's prepared to die for: the freedom of the slaves, the lives of the innocent, the future of Earth. This big cause is probably what the hero has been pursuing throughout the novel.

* State the purpose of the fight, that big cause for which the hero is fighting. Spell it out, and keep it in the reader's mind. The more you emphasise the purpose, the more the readers will root for the hero.

* Use an unusual location for the fight, preferably a dangerous place, such as burning house or a sinking ship.

* Stack the odds against your hero (who can, of course, be a heroine): Give the villain the better weapons, better armour, better preparation. Make your hero vulnerable: he's unarmed or poorly armed, without protective armour, maybe even injured or exhausted. The more you stack the odds, the more the readers will root for the hero.

* If several people are involved in the fight, arrange it so there are more bad guys than good guys, because readers always root for the minority.

* If the villain is supported by several henchmen, let your hero defeat them one by one. The villain has to be the last one to fall, in order to keep the tension high.

* Show violence. Even if you've skirted around violence in the earlier parts of the novel, this scene will benefit from injury and pain.

* Create a 'black moment' when all seems lost. Then the hero recalls his purpose, rallies his last drop of strength and courage, and fights on until victory.

* If your hero has a special skill, find a way to use it in the fight scene, preferably in a surprising way.

* If your hero has a weakness, phobia or fear, force him to face it during the climactic fight. For example, if he fears heights, the fight takes place on the roof of a skyscraper. If he has a phobia of snakes, the villain uses snakes against him. If he's terrified of spiders, he must fight in a spider-infested cave.

If you have questions about writing fight scenes, feel free to ask. I'll be around for a week and will respond. 

Thank you so much for being a guest, Rayne! 

So, tell us your story! What do you struggle with when writing fight scenes? Rayne will be around all week to answer questions. Let's give her some!