Blogger: Rachelle Gardner
Every time I blog about platform or social media, the vocal response in the comments reminds me that it’s a difficult subject for many authors. Everyone wonders how and when to build a platform, and many writers aren’t enthusiastic about it.
There are two things I’m constantly stressing to authors:
(1) Building a platform is important.
(2) Mastering the craft of writing is crucial.
For unpublished fiction writers, these two things are not equal.
Your writing should be first priority. Aspiring novelists should spend most of your discretionary time writing and becoming a better writer.
Read high quality fiction, read books on craft, get feedback from critique partners, edit and rewrite… but mostly write, write, write.
Don’t spend to much time trying to build platform yet. Get a head start, yes. Do some blogging and social networking for fun and leisure, so that you’ll know how it works. But I recommend a 90/10 ratio. Spend 90% writing, 10% on platform building.
Until you have some strong fiction completed, you have nothing on which to build a platform anyway. And until you’ve become a good writer that people want to read, the rest will be irrelevant.
Things change when you’re about to get published. At that point, you’ll be doing everything you can to gather an audience.
And things are different if you’re a non-fiction writer. Authors of non-fiction are expected to have a solid platform before a publisher will consider them.
But if you are a novelist who has yet to be published, remember your first priority: your writing.
Whether you’re published or not, writing fiction or non-fiction, how do you divide your writing-related time? Percentage-wise, how much writing time versus how much social networking and platform building?
Should Unpublished Novelists Build Platforms? Agent @RachelleGardner weighs in. Click to Tweet.
If you’re an unpublished novelist, your writing is top priority – not platform, says @RachelleGardner. Click to Tweet.
Unpublished novelists, @RachelleGardner says spend 90% of time on writing, 10% on platform building. Click to Tweet.