Special Edition: #Blog4Biz A Writer’s Business

Blog4Biz Day 5

Out of Hiatus for a special cause….

 

My friend Shai  has me coming out of my blogging hiatus.  Per my post on my birthday, I am technically on a blogging break, but sometimes we have to make changes for good causes and this is a great cause.

 

What is #Blog4Biz?  I’m glad you asked.  It’s a  blogging challenge for the month of July for business owners created by Shai. It’s a blogging challenge to help you get your business off the ground if you’re a new entrepreneur.  If you’re a seasoned entrepreneur or a ‘serial’ entrepreneur it can help you get focused on the current or the next project.  And who doesn’t want that?  We get a new prompt every day.  Would you like to join us?  Check Shai’s blog daily and join the Facebook group.  We’d love to see you over there.  Tell Shai I sent you so she doesn’t think I’m slacking. 

 

Not only is this challenge to help you blog for your business, it’s to help you flesh out the plans and dreams you have for your business as well as connect with your customers, clients, audience and readers (in my case). It’s like a written business vision board. Sidenote: we love vision boards around here.  For the 31 days of July, there will be a different prompt and the word number increases – yes, the word number increases.  For those that don’t know me and are new here – welcome!  But word count is never an issue for me as a writer.  I’m wordy as hell.

 

My prompt for the day is:

Choose a word that starts with ‘mo’ like momentum, mobility, moving, etc. and write about how that relates to your current business incarnation

Of course, why would I end up with this one?

After pulling up all the words I could think of that started with ‘mo’ I chose the word….

MOXIE

mox·ie  (mks)

n. Slang

1. The ability to face difficulty with spirit and courage.

2. Aggressive energy; initiative:

3. Skill; know-how.

 

I’m writing from the perspective of someone who IS the business.  Basically, my words are my business.  I take them seriously.  If you’re a creative, an artist or someone who provides a service or a product, you’re still part of the business brand.  Many times, you are the brand.  As a writer, people come here to read what I’m writing and they pay attention to what I say – that was a scary thought when the blog took off.  I mean, people really care about what I say or don’t?  Yeah, no pressure. 

 

The reality is it takes a lot of moxie, on a daily, weekly basis to continue – with any business.  Some days are more successful than others.  There will be a number of failures, poor decisions, etc that happen.   There will be a lot of times you want to throw in the towel and quit.  Trust me, I know about this – I have seriously thought of deleting the blog a few times.  I didn’t.  I persevered because I realized what I’m doing right now is important.  To me and my readers.  What’s coming up is important.  But you can’t get to the other side of things if you stop in the middle.

 

The moxie is what carries you through.  Those are the days it becomes extremely important to dig in, tap in and carry on.  For me, it’s the moxie that gives you the momentum.  

 

When I first started blogging, I started just to test the waters.  As a writer I wanted to know was I any good.  I wanted to know how people would respond to my posts.  I wanted to know what people would say first-hand.  Did I have the nerve to publish?  Could I handle the negative comments that sometimes come an author’s way?  Was I ready to face the rejection or someone telling me my ish wasn’t good?

Yes.  Yup.  All day.

I also realized somewhere in there, I didn’t exactly have a concrete plan.  While I’m not posting daily for the challenge, I would like to say my ultimate client is mostly all of you – anyone who reads and finds the blog comforting.  My ultimate goal is to get these stories I’ve been hiding and housing for years, edited and posted into Amazon and then see where it goes from there. In the meantime, there is so much work to actually be done.  Despite the fact I’m a creative and I write, blog, etc., there is always business to handle.  Setting up business entities, handling money, making decisions for next steps, making sure the blog is maintained and handling the editing and the publishing of the book.

If you’re an artist or creative person, don’t ever let anyone let you think it isn’t a legitimate business.  There’s so much work that has to be done and considered on the back end of things – in addition to all of the creative work that has to be done.  Seriously.  It’s like double work.  However, it’s worth it.

What’s your word?  Let me know in the comments section below.

For all of those that normally follow From Rae with Love, I’ve started a new group vlog, called The Stepsisters with my friends Shai, Tanisha and Eva.  We’ve been having an amazing time.  Right now we’re discussing blogging, collaborative blogs and the #Blog4Biz challenge.  However, don’t get it twisted, we talk about EVERYTHING on there.  We tend to roll off on a good tangent every show and that’s when the magic really happens.  Check us out!  Mind you, the show is about an hour every Wednesday at 9pm and we do the show LIVE.  Seriously.  Stay for what happens past the business side of it and you’re guaranteed a good time.  Also, you can follow us here collectively on twitter @StepSistersBlog.

It’s been difficult to stay away from the blog, however, sometimes we have to take a break in order to reset ourselves and refocus on our purpose.  I promise I’m not going anywhere because there is so much more to come.  I have some things in the works and cannot wait to share them with all of you.  You also know you can find me on twitter @fromraewithlove.

Before I go let me give you a few really good books I’ve been read and talk about the business side of the creative field:

The Artist’s Guide: How to Make a Living Doing What You Love by Jackie Battenfield

Blogging for Creatives: How Designers, Artists, crafters and writers can blog to make contacts, win business and build success by Robin Houghton

Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life  by Anne Lamott

Choose Yourself: Be Happy, Make Millions, Live the Dream by James Altucher

APE: How to Publish a Book (Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur  by Kawasaki/Welch

 

As with any business it’s about having the moxie to put yourself and your work/product/name/service out there.  More importantly it’s about doing the work.

Would love to hear your comments below!  Please make sure to visit and sign up for the challenge!  Hope to see you all there on the other side of completion and success!!!

Love,

Rae

 

Advertisements

When a Writer Panics

I had this idea over the years that all of the notebooks and the snippets of stories would someday rescue me.  That they would all come together into a novel.

Clearly, I was wrong.

I have a pile of stories that are amazing…possibly ready to be published – if I would finish them.  Lines upon lines of unfinished or “homeless” sentences.

I was going through some of my notebooks and archived ideas the other day.  I almost had a heart attack at some of the horrible writing I was reading.  Wondering to myself how I came up with some of the foolishness I had actually written down.  In my opinion it was bad.  It wasn’t reading the way I wanted it to read.

I panicked.  I’m still panicking a bit.

I was so worried.  I was like all of this horribly written shit?  Lord help me.

Just when I think all hope is lost, I find a gem in the hundreds of misguided stories.  One that could possibly save my hope for myself as a writer.  I’m sure you’re asking (and maybe not but I am) why would I think I’m a bad writer?  See, that’s the thing.  I don’t.

But the way I have progressed over the years; what I write now versus what I wrote then; what I can envision now and capture in the written word?  It’s so different.

Writing fiction is different than writing creative non-fiction (which is how I see this blog).  It’s creative, but I’m speaking from my life.  What I talk about is real.  But isn’t the imaginary world I would create in a novel real?  Creating a world in which I can immerse myself, in which other readers can immerse themselves for a while feels like an entirely different thing.

But is it?  How come I’m having such a difficult time hearing the characters and seeing the story?  Will it at some point just come to me?

During my #30IN30 this month – and this is Day 22, I’ve learned I need to keep writing and show up at the keyboard no matter what.  If it takes writing some shit, then that may be what I need to do to flesh out the one sentence birthing a novel, a story.  I also know as the days have passed, I’ve found I can write – and write well, under duress and pressure and still have something of value.  Please see the days when I posted twice or three times to catch up.

So now the question is can I write fiction?  Will it be something I need to put on hold until later?  Am I better at creative non-fiction?  I need to sort a few things out. I need and want to take a few classes.

In the meantime, I will continue to write, journal, read and most importantly, live.  Collect all of the stories of life.

I waited many years before I decided to begin the blog.  I’m thankful I did because had I not, I would have had to pay with the awful writing I was seeing.  I knew then I wasn’t ready to share all of the stories, the parts of my life.  Now, on a different shift I am growing and learning to look at the newer goals I have writing.  After the #30IN30 has ended, I will post a few short stories here on the blog for your critique to see what you think.  Beyond that, I’m planning to submit a few of the stories (once finished) for publishing in the literary journals.  I will need to set an official blog schedule within the next nine days.

What are your thoughts on your writing over the years?  If you’ve been participating in #30IN30 and #Writelikecrazy have you set goals beyond the challenge?  What kinds of things have you learned during the challenge?
Love,

Rae