I'm not the most media savvy author on the planet but then I've never claimed to be. I prefer spending my days at the keyboard making up stories and consuming enough caffeine and chocolate to keep three people going full speed ahead. Sharing on social media makes me nervous. How much is too much, how much is not enough? I've spent a very frustrating year, my second without a published story since I've started publishing.
I think there comes a time in every author’s life when they realize that it’s time to apply that wonderful “what if” question to their own career. About eighteen months ago I had torn the same manuscript apart more times than I’d like to admit when it suddenly dawned on me that I had a paranormal romance with a nice twist that was getting lost because I kept trying to make it fit into a structure that wasn’t working.
Banging my head against a wall had never been my style before so I didn’t recognize what was happening at first. By the time I did figure it out, I knew that more than the story was going to need revising. My entire career was about to change. Change is good became my mantra. Change also takes time and requires planning so I made a list and have been steadily working through it while finishing the paranormal romance.
I knew that the change was also going to require some investment of time and money. My first website was comfortable...familiar. It was my first foray into promoting my brand, a concept I didn’t really grasp the importance of until after I was in the business for a couple of years. Yes, as a newbie with one contemporary erotic novella under my belt, I don’t think I really had a concept of what I wanted as my brand. The only brand that concerned me then was writing a good story. That hasn’t changed but I have a clearer idea of how I want that brand reflected.
While I have a certain nostalgic fondness for my first website, it's definitely slanted toward erotic romance and it took about two seconds to realize that it won't encompass my new stories. It literally took months to come up with some ideas to give my webmistress so that she could get started. Trust me when I tell you that Dee Tenorio of Laideebug Digital is the most patient person on the planet. I love the new art deco feel and I can't wait to unveil it.
Not everything will be changing. For the past year, I've been taking RWA (Romance Writers of America) University workshops on everything from career planning to social media and the one outstanding little nugget of information that kept popping up was that in this day and age, authors need to make it as easy as possible for their readers to find them. I've come to realize that for me, keeping the Paris Brandon pen name instead of choosing another is best. I'm not a social media whiz kid. I can barely keep up with one pen name let alone two. I'd rather be writing.
It's hard to believe that 2015 is just around the corner but I'm ready for whatever it brings. Who knows, I could become addicted to Pinterest. Change is good.
Until next month,