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"Required reading" for today's smart writer. As featured on: Pro Blogger, Men With Pens, Daily Blog Tips, Write to Done, Technorati, WOW! and other popular sites.

Monday, July 30, 2012

4 Common Writing Myths That Keep You From Making Money...And Making Progress


Make no mistake about it. Writing in today’s economic climate has become as competitive as professional sports!

And if you’d like to “score” more opportunities to have your work published, reach readers, and get paid, don't drop the ball.
You must recognize that success is as much about having a good game plan and the proper mindset, as it is about having proficiency with words.
I've said this before, but repetition reinforces...

With this in mind, here are four principles and practices to consider:

1. You are a writer when you “think” and declare you’re a writer.
Uh, no you’re not.
Sorry, thinking doesn’t always make it so. Here’s a case in point: My “inner Diva” thinks she’s a size 6. But no matter how often I try to align this mental perception with the physical reality, it just doesn’t work. There‘s no nexus.
When I try on a size 6 in the dressing room, the proof is right before me. The clothes stubbornly refuse to cooperate. My point? You’re a writer when you take this craft seriously. When you put pen to paper consistently. When you study and read and apply accordingly. When you submit to editors and risk rejection. Until then, you’re like my inner Diva--just a dreamer. :-)
Consider this. Lawyers don’t become lawyers by “thinking” it, nor do doctors, nor do teachers. IMHO neither should writers. :-)

2. Bloggers that Blog on free platforms (Wordpress, Blogger, etc.) aren’t taken seriously.
Don’t believe the hype!
Well -noted authors and public figures have been able to achieve the same goals and notoriety as their self-hosted peers. People like Kelly James Enger and Hope Clark to name a few. Not to mention, my Blog, (gratefully), has allowed me to garner clients, get decent paying writing gigs, win awards, and guest post at many of the top-dog Blog sites for writers. And yours can too! The key? Excellent content, easy navigation, take-away value, and a serious attitude about success.

3. The more you post, the better.
It all depends. Sometimes less is more, folks.
For most bloggers, posting everyday is a struggle. But they’ve bought into the belief that the more they update their blogs, the more they’ll be remembered, and the higher they’ll rank in Google.
Proceed with caution; sometimes this can do more harm than good. Blogging in excess can cause you and your readers to feel bored and overwhelmed. Particularly if it’s not quality content. Choose wisely. Remember that if you're bored, more than likely your readers will be too.

4. For real writing success, you must write something everyday.
I’ll let you in on a little secret here…
As a professional writer and blogger, for over a decade, (who has earned thousands of dollars in the process), I can attest that I have never written everyday. And likely never will.
Sometimes I spend creative time reading, watching movies, hanging out with other creative cool cats and doing things to actually have a “life” to write about!
Hello? Don’t feel guilty if you miss a day or two from your writing routine.
Relax when warranted. And most of all, find out what really “works” for you and then work it!

How about you? Any of these myths you're guilty of buying into? Any you'd like to add to the mix? Let me hear from you. :-)


Image: SPFF

9 comments:

  1. I have tried to ^force* blog posts at times so that I can have one daily a month. You're right; the posts suffer from that pressure. And those posts don't generate much reaction.

    Also, my hobby blog is on Blogger. I have written for Examiner, too. But, I don't have a writer's blog or website yet because I am waiting until I can "buy" one at National Writer's Association. Is it better to start out using Blogger and then to switch to a self-hosted platform? Or to wait to get a self-hosted platform?

    Thanks for these tips!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jennifer Brown BanksJuly 30, 2012 at 11:22 AM

      P.S.

      D7ana,

      Think of it like a "starter home". You'll still get to experience the joys of ownership without the expense, initially. Hope this helps.

      Delete
  2. Jennifer Brown BanksJuly 30, 2012 at 11:03 AM

    D7ana,

    Girl, where you been? Great to hear from you today!
    Bloom where you're planted.
    In other words, I would definitely recommend starting out with Blogger until you decide to do the self-hosted thing. To be honest, I read a lot of blogs.
    Some bloggers with free platforms have more successful sites than their "self-hosted" peers. Just make sure it has quality content, an attractive design, and good take-away value for readers.

    I've done pretty well with mine. :-) Thanks for stopping by today. We'll have to do this more often. lol

    ReplyDelete
  3. So, your inner diva does that too? Mine thinks she's an 8. But no wait, that's my daughter's size. Maybe my diva should go shopping with her.

    Love these points. I agree, writers need to be serious about writing, learning, and being consistent in that pursuit. But that also, as you said, does not mean you must write everyday. I think everyone needs to find the stride that is right for them. Good post, thanks!

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  4. Jennifer Brown BanksJuly 30, 2012 at 2:37 PM

    Karen,

    That's funny. Thanks so much for your thoughts. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Yes, I do believe that writers - especially talented ones - with also a high skill level have a better chance of making money and progress.

    It also looks that in our culture there is a big emphasis on cosmetics, and that it is considered as a standarised measurement of various levels of comprehension. Only I don't know if writers are alway's that standard.

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  6. Jennifer Brown BanksJuly 31, 2012 at 9:27 AM

    HP,

    I appreciate your time and thoughts. :-)

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  7. Jennifer,

    I really enjoyed this post! Thanks for sinking some of these myths. I used to wonder how I could live up to writing something every day. You are absolutely right that we have a life, and that the life experiences give us something to write about. Also agree with you that quality is better than quantity, so now I don't try to watch my number of blog posts per month, although I do try to have fresh content.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Jennifer Brown BanksJuly 31, 2012 at 1:38 PM

    Yasmin,

    Here's to living a life worth reading about! :-)

    Glad to get your feedback.

    ReplyDelete