Lessons Learned in May – on consistency, making friends and free
The last month has been quite an adventure in my writing journey, I’ve experimented with all sorts of things and made some wonderful new friends along the way too. Perhaps though the most important thing I learnt was consistency, not only consistency in terms of writing regularly, but also of content. Slowly, it seems I am finding my voice and my place in the enormous writing community/
Practical Lessons Learned in April
1. Taking part in Friday Fictioneers has introduced me to a huge number of new writers who have a common goal to support each other. It has helped me to begin dipping my toe in the water of some alternative ways of writing and subjects that I would never have thought about before. I get a lot of inspiration from everyone that takes part and I’ve even found some help for my weekly word posts as a result of the wonderful language used by others.
2. I’ve always been a bookworm even to the extent that as a child I was banned from bringing a book to the dinner table, this made me intensely interested in the blurb that was on the back of any packets or jars that happened to be around. However, I was a conservative reader too although my tastes changed over the years. Getting myself involved with the writing community has shown me authors and genres I would never have considered before and as a result I believe my writing will benefit hugely.
3. Having a structure is important as it means that I know what I’m going to be writing about three out of every five days that I blog. However, I realised that I was getting a bit boring by using the same introductions and opening paragraphs (it’s also not good for SEO as the search engines rate the first paragraph as the most important content on a page …!) therefore I’ve started modifying things, moving bits around and generally trying to come up with something a little different on each of my consistent subject areas.
4. I don’t know how many times I’ve heard (and advised) that ‘free is good’ and I decided I’d try the Kindle Lending Programme and offer my novel free of charge for five days – it’s been quite an adventure and nine days after the free period ended the book is still ranking at a level I could never have anticipated. I will definitely do this again, but next time I will be a little more strategic about it, instead of doing it on a whim.
5. Creating a set of social media schedule documents is helping me to keep control of my online activities and is helping me to measure the results. They are being constantly refined and when I have a set I’m completely happy with I’ll share them with you for your use as well.
Personal Lessons Learned in April
1. Perhaps the hardest lesson to learn has been the need to separate out my business life from my writing life. I’m still working on some strategies to try to make it easier to manage. I’ll follow-up on the blog post I wrote later on this month hopefully.
2. I’ve discovered a love of flash fiction and plan to write more of it – not just for Friday Fictioneers but just for my own pleasure too.
That’s it, those are the most important lessons I have learnt in May and I’m looking forward to learning more in June.