Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Is it a Platform or a Ledge?

Last year I connected with people who write.  There is so much available to writers that wasn't there in the past.  Or maybe it was always there, but it seemed so unreasonable for me to reach out to those folks.  I mean, I'm not really a writer.  I just want to be one.  I want to share my stories with others.  I want the privilege of creating something that others will find worthy of their time.

One of the things that I kept hearing about was that writers need a "Platform".  Some way for people to learn about the author and for the author to communicate his/her work.  So I started a blog and I spent time on Twitter and some web sites dedicated to writers.  My problem was that it felt like I spent more time doing those things than actually writing.  Not only that, but I also learned so much from my online friends and online writing sources about the craft of writing that I realized I wasn't ready for a platform.  It felt... I don't know...dishonest.  I am not writing enough or well enough to begin building my platform.  At this point in my development, I don't have enough to say about my work or writing in general to spend time on a platform.

For me, the platform felt like a ledge.  I thought I was supposed to be there because everyone else was, but it was so unstable that I was teetering on the edge.  I was going to fall.  I hadn't built up enough of a foundation of writing skills and materials to make the ledge stable enough to be a platform.

I haven't blogged much this year.  I've spent very little time on Twitter and my online resources.  I have spent my time reading a lot of books about writing, style, genre, etc.  I'm at the point where I've got a story in my mind and I just need to pull the trigger.  In other words, I need to write. 

No more time-wasting working on a platform I'm not ready for or reading any more books to gain insight.  I am stepping off the ledge and going to sit my butt in a chair and write.