Publicity Tip #16 ~
Find a variety of avenues to expand your author platform with writing.
Take those short stories lurking in the depths of your mind and get them on the page – submit them to one contest after another until you’ve exhausted your options (start small if you haven’t built up your confidence yet: submit to online and local contests where the prizes are minimal but the exposure is optimal).
Submit that poetry you’re not planning to use in your own compilation or the stuff you wrote in your journal when you were having an exceptionally bad day – spruce it up and get it out there.
Do guest blogs on sites you follow and look for new sites on G+ or LinkedIn that offer opportunities for guest content (like Infinite Pathways!). You don’t have to write about writing – if you’re a mother, consider an anecdotal or a top 5 list of dos or don’ts that is humorous but informative. If you’re an amateur astronomer, take a few pictures one night and do a write-up on a blog for people just like you! The opportunities are endless. You could even use your extensive knowledge of your ‘day job’ to write a few blogs… don’t limit yourself.
And then there’s article writing. Consider reaching out to print and online magazines with proposals for articles before spending the time writing them – just in case the magazine you’re contacting likes your idea but asks you to spin it a slightly different way. Then, if your idea is passed over, you can try the next journal on your list.
I realize that not everyone has extra time to devote to other writing opportunities – your book is likely your main focus and you need to get it done. However, during the editing and revising stage of your main work allow yourself to branch out during your down-time, away from your manuscript, and try these others avenues. An agent or publisher will be more likely to read the first chapter or two of your book if you can show that you’ve written in another capacity elsewhere.
Don’t limit your options, reach out and touch someone with your writing however you can.