Yes, I’m one of those dummies. I love to write, but I hate to market. I recently began a journey to learn more about marketing because, like it or not, if I’m going to get the written word to the reader, I have to market (and I don’t hvae thousands of dollars to pour into it).
The first thing I asked myself is why is marketing necessary? It’s only necessary if you want people to read your work – whether that be a blog page, a short story, a how-to article, or a full-blown novel. There may be different reasons why you want people to read you, but they won’t unless they know about you. So, marketing is a necessity.
The public must be aware of your product, which in the case of writing, is two-fold – your book, and you. It’s not enough to get your book in front of people. You must also sell yourself. By that, I don’t mean to be pretentious and put on a front. Be yourself. What I do mean is that people must learn to trust you. That calls for building relationships, and that’s not an easy task.
So, how do we do that? There are several things to consider, and that will lead us to Part 2 next time. Until then . . .
Some people call it flash fiction. I much prefer the term, short story – very, very short story. Regardless of what you call it, the question remains – am I my brother’s keeper?
The question was first posed by Cain 6,000 years ago. After murdering his brother, God comes looking for him. We read in Genesis 4:8, 9, “And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him. And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper?”
The answer really is “Yes”. We are responsible for the care of others whether we like it or not. We are to send the warning call for all to hear. If they refuse to listen, that is certainly their choice. Still, we have a responsibility. We have been made watchmen/women on the wall.
Much of Jesus’ ministry was spent sharing parables. Parables were a special kind of story that shared a veiled meaning. Those who listened on the surface would miss the real meaning. Those who truly sought the Master would understand and respond. To those of us who want to follow in the steps of Jesus, the meaning is clear. We must sound the trumpet and warn those lost in darkness before the darkness overtakes them. Will you respond?
Grab your trumpet and come along!
The third watch had just begun. Elishima climbed to his post upon the city wall. For the next few hours, his job was to watch for the enemy and to warn those inside the city gates if the enemy appeared. Elishima’s trumpet, the instrument of warning, hung at his right side ready to be put into service at a moment’s notice.
The midnight sky was dark and overcast and a strange silence filled the air. “Tonight would be different than other nights”, Elishima told himself. He could feel a sense of danger all around. As he stood there alone atop the city wall, Elishima intuitively knew he would be called upon to save his city that night. Where and when the enemy would strike, he did not know.
A gentle breeze blew across the city wall. Anticipation whispered to Elishima in each breath. Danger was approaching as the city slept. Silence continued to grow into the night.
Then to the northwest, a glimmer of light was seen. A low rumble of chariots could be heard. The torches were burning brightly in the night darkness as the enemy approached on horseback. The salvation of the city depended on one man – Elishima.
With numbness in his hand and a tightening in his chest, he reached for his trumpet. The first blow was weak and powerless, yet he knew his responsibility. Again, this time loud and true came the warning signal to the town below. The enemy was coming!
The townspeople heard, but late in the night, they made no effort to rise. Perhaps it was just a dream, or maybe Elishima had made a mistake. Certainly, it was not serious enough that they should be disturbed. Elishima again gave the trumpet call, the signal that the enemy was approaching. It seemed as if it fell on deaf ears.
There were a handful of people who did answer the call. They ran to meet Elishima at the lookout atop the wall. At this time, Elishima’s perch on the wall was the safest place to be.
The horsemen rushed the main gate, breaking it down with little resistance. There had been no maintenance for years. The rusty bolts gave way with ease. Once inside, the enemy set them to burning and looting the city. All those refusing to hear the call were taken captive and later executed.
Elishima and a handful of diligent people were undetected atop the wall. They quietly climbed over the edge and lowered themselves to the ground and escaped under cover of night.
Marine biologist Les Griffin’s precious marine life has been contaminated by radiation off the coast of Miami, Florida, and he has been contracted by the United States Navy to find the cause. The Navy isn’t appreciative of Les’s work, but then neither is Abaddon, who rules the underworld from beneath the Bermuda Triangle. The cost of his investigation – radiation poisoning, his daughter, and his own soul hangs in the balance. What will happen as Les approaches the unknown in the underworld? This suspense-filled book will have you turning pages to find the answer.
What makes a writer write? Writing is an expression of the writer’s soul. It is who we are. It is what we are about. It is our very being. We write not because of what we are, but because of who we are.
We write about things that matter to us. We write about things that matter to others. We write, whether fiction or non-fiction, to expose our soul – that very deepest part of our being.
We write to connect to those who read us. In turn, our readers feed us; push us harder and stretch us further. As they read, We are in their memory – in their thoughts. We become a part of them. What a privilege!
So the question becomes, what are you writing? What are you sharing? God has given you, through the written word, the ability to affect people’s lives for eternity. Are you affecting them positively or negatively?
With every privilege comes responsibility. You, that have been entrusted with the gift of writing, how are you handling your responsibility? Are you writing responsibly with others in mind? Oh yes, bare your soul, but do it in a way that edifies and builds your readers.
So remember, be passionate about what you do. Wear the nameWriterproudly. But ultimately write every word for the glory of the Lord. He has entrusted you with the gift. Now you guard it and protect it as you write for Him.