He Who Started It All

The way he moved, it was like he was dancing around the bullets. Gliding seamlessly between kicks and strikes, moving from one victim to another. Untouchable. I’d watched hundreds of hours of cctv and every time I singled out his suave knife skills. You could tell it was him, always handling the blades as if he were only twirling a pen in class.

It was hypnotizing. How effortlessly he could rob someone of their life, destroy a bank or thrash someone who he disliked.

I forced myself to put my laptop down. It was 3 in the morning again. My eyes stung. I’d been going too deep again. But I didn’t pull myself out of the rabbit hole on my own. My phone was buzzing fervently in my pocket. I dug it out. The room was illuminated by the word ‘Chief’.

I straitened, a rumpled pillow falling into my lap. 

“Hello sir.”

“Amadeus I need you here asap.”

It was Alex’s shift. He was a competent detective. Had been on the force five years longer than I had. My mind immediately went to the worst. 

“Is he ok?”

“He’s fine. I’m getting the whole division down here. Another one showed up.”

“Yes, sir. Understood.”

Laptop in my bag, pulled on my pea coat, grabbed my uniform off the rack, kicked on my shoes. My heels still get caught on the backs. The car didn’t want to start again. Too cold I guess. I changed out of my sweatpants while it warmed up. Then I was off. 

Its eight miles to the station takes and takes 17 minutes. What a quiet night it was, considering the world was about to end. Very few cars were out so I didn’t turn on my lights. The city was dim, most places closed by now. I looked for anyone walking along the road or cars going a little too fast.

I stepped in a puddle in the lot, which was nearly full at this point. My soggy shoes left spots as I hurried inside.

“Hey Truther, they’re in the office.” It was Williby, I didn’t pay him any mind.

I could see my supervisor and the rest of the team at the chief’s desk. They’d called me last again.

“Hey, I made you a hat so your hair wont get wet.” He pointed to my desk.

There was more tinfoil sitting on it.

“Ha ha, thanks bud… thanks for noting”

*knock knock*

“Get in here.”

I shut the door behind me and leaned against it. The room was small, smelled a tad like smoke and looked like a paper bomb had been set off. Alex had his computer on the table and was watching closely, the others were gathered around a very small piece of paper

“But what would this relate to then?”

I set down my bag and walked around to the open spot.

I was just like the last one called.

Character Dossiers and Updated Information As I Have It

Information on the Connectivity of Crime

Lore Report: The Screamers

March 6th 2025

On March 11th, 2011 Varistary Mall in Jacksonville Florida was held up in a hostage situation. The perpetrators laid bombs at the base of the concrete pillars that supported the five-story tall mall. It is still unknown how many individuals orchestrated the attack as the pretended to be civilians and evacuated after only five hours in the mall. Three individuals were found dead on inspection and two people were shot before demands were met.

Varistary is an Another Buried Warning Sign

“What concerns me most is how easily the criminals left the scene… leaving three dead in their wake.”
-Hostage negotiator on scene

This event was largely forgotten as on that same day, three hours earlier, a tsunami hit western Japan and the following earthquake and aftershocks devastated 10’s of thousands of lives. So too was it overlooked as the demands were so inconsequential.

But this was just the first event.

June 21, 2023. A warehouse is on fire in downtown Atlanta. In one of the units the workshop of a few amateur scientists heats to 1800 as precious relics act as wicks. After sixteen years spent reconstructing fading books, the deeply complicated culture of the original occult is cremated. At least a thousand tomes were lost to history.

December 29th, 2023. A museum artifact is stolen. No others have been found that are like this. It was special. One of a kind. A small metal disk originating in 1540 in native nature-based pagan religion related to the origins of modern-day Wicca.

This item had been reported stolen from several previous museums. Not different artifacts, the same exact one. The reports on file date back two hundred years. Nothing else was stolen from the West Elm Museum of Natural History. The robbery is not reported to authorities.

February 11th, 2024. An bank in New York is robbed for an excess of $400,000. This would seem disconnected. But during the hist, the artifact, called the Milanoa, can be seen spinning on the countertop. The bombs are the same as the ones from Jacksonville.

Chase Refused Comment

“They were cocky. One was wearing a blind fold… It was humiliating.”
-New York City Officer (wishes to remain anonymous)

July 1st, 2024. San Fransisco Police start investigating potential cult behavior based off the number of dead cats found by chalk symbols on street corners. The symbol on the streets is that of the metal disk.

October 31st, 2024. The Portland Massacre. 24 young men are found dead in the forest just outside town and three young women washed up in the Willamette river. Countless more are presumed dead. Oregonians have a habit of wandering off. Only this time it was different. This time they haven’t been recovered.

It’s all tied together by a thin trail.

Though I’ve presented this information to many a source, few are inclined to side with me. I know why. The implication of these events all leading back to one source is this: there are terrorists within American borders, they know how to build bombs and are actively planning something. People have told me to leave the topic well alone. But I say

“Bring on the Satanic Panic.”

Character Dossiers and Updated Information As I Have It

It’s likely that I’ll be killed during this investigation. For that reason I want my reasoning and information to be publicly available so that those at fault can be brought to justice. Please fallow the above link to receive the in depth information I’ve recorded.

If you are in need of more proof I will be posting the first bout of information ASAP. Please stay tuned.


Update: I’ve just published the primer. It’s how this whole story starts.

What Everyone Forgets- Fiction Writer’s Guide to Platform Building

So one of my most popular videos on youtube is Wattpad Vs. WordPress, which one is better for fiction writers. Its also one of my best preforming blog posts. But I’ve learned an awful lot about building a platform in between then and now, so I wanted to do a fallow up.

  1. It’s not about being perfect from the get go, as you practice and get better (and you will) then your audience will find you on any platform. If you don’t want to put out content either because it’s not good enough or because it’s amazing and you want more people to see it, then you need to take a good long look at your audience count. It will grow with you

2. With that being said, choose the platform that works best with your style. I hate video editing so it’s hard for me to put out youtube videos, but tik tok’s aren’t expected to be well edited. It’s much faster to make and tends to compliment my comedy style and BOUNUS the people on the app are actually my target audience.

3. So who is your target audience and where can you find them? I’d be willing to bet money that your target audience is yourself 3-5 years in the past. These are the people you can provide the most value too as you’ve been there and know exactly what they’re looking for. If you want to sell a service then just look at what you wanted or what you were buying before, you only need to be a few steps ahead of your audience.

4. The 90% rule: Get your work to 90% of perfect. The last 10% will take the most time, be recognized the least by your audience (who hasn’t been staring at it for six goddamn hours), and what you learn doing the first 90% will make it much easier to make a new project. Perfectionism is the creator of burnout.

5. 1000 true fans. It doesn’t matter what number of people you have as a fallowing. You could pay $50 for 10,000 Instagram followers. What does matter is the number of true fans who love you, fallow everything you do, and have money to spend on you every year. With just 1000 people with $100 to spend on you yearly you’d be making $100,000 yearly. So there’s no reason to aim for everyone, deeping those connections is more important.

20 Tips for Writers to Stay Strong in Your 2020 New Years Resolutions

It’s already the 20th day of 2020 which is pretty shocking to me. I was at work talking about resolutions when my alway tired and flustered co worker says to me ‘I don’t believe in new years resolutions, they’re just a capitalist scam to sell more gym memberships’ I was completely caught off guard because I’d never met one of these people in the wild. I didn’t get to say everything I wanted to so please enjoy my post/rant.

1-3 Dispel the Doubts

1. “You can change any day so why change on the first?” I completely believe part of this- You can change any day and you should be growing and changing everyday. The reason to change on new years is because of all the support from your community. I can not believe how many Podcasts, Instagram posts, youtube videos, etc I’ve seen with advice and motivation to get you picking goals and setting realistic goals this year. It simply has peaked. You’ll find my favorites at the end of the list!

2. “I can’t even think of a resolution besides write more.” Stop smoking, take more time for yourself, watch less TV/youtube/social media, spend more time with family, work on your hobbit more, implement a system to use your time better, read more, start a new sport, save more money, make more money. Anything and everything that you wish for can be turned into a resolution. But resolutions with that framing wont stick, you have to write them in a better way. For your writing goals, see if any of the fallowing resinate with you:

"I will build momentum by sitting down to write one sentence everyday. If I go for longer thats amazing." 
"Whenever I ride the bus I will read from one book that motivates me to be a better writer."
"I will schedule writing time in every week and will not let anything get in the way- it's nonnegotiable"
"I will continue to write even when I think it's bad. I can't get better without practice."

3. “I wasn’t like that last year so why will it be any different?” You won’t wake up on the first a brand new person, but you can start down the road to become a better person. On day one you just need to take the first step. Day two take the second. Any day you missed, well that was just a hiccup, just keep moving forward whenever you remember too. Give yourself leeway and don’t expect yourself to be perfect, start small and work your way up.

4-6 If you Don’t What Your First Step is:

4. Define what you want out of your writing- Do you want to write for your self of an audience, be published, self publish, have stories to tell your kids? Do you just want to write more? Sell more? Support some other hobby, record your own personal story?

5. Figure out the first few things you need to do to get there- Do you need an audience to feel successful? How will you build one? Do you need to do research on publishers or editors? Do you need to know what an agent actually does? DO you want to take classes, if so then your task is to google writing classes in your area and online. If you can write out tasks in 5 minute chunks then you’ll see how easy it is to more forward on your path. It’s just one sentence after another

6. Do those things and if you get stuck or don’t want to work on it anymore as yourself why and get to the root. Most of the time the thing that’s stopping us from our success is our own beliefs. Whats the story you keep telling yourself about being a writer, about who you are as a person, about why you can’t do that thing. Work your way back and try to come to an understanding of why you have that belief. Then find reasons to prove that it’s false.

7-14 Stay Strong.

For me this means sounding myself with motivational/ supportive things. This of it like how the AA works, you see other people achieving so you should too. Download podcasts around your goal, fallow Youtubers who talk about writing, and find writing hashtags anywhere you spend time. This servers as a reminder about your goal. I got some audiobooks to play at home while doing dishes, podcasts for the commute, a physical book before bed, background music for while I work, apps that send me reminders and I told my friends and co-workers about it so they’ll keep me accountable.

7. Schedule in time to work on your goal- If you don’t the world will make sure you don’t have any ‘freetime’

8. Give yourself some leeway and listen too your body. We all need to take some time for ourselves and forcing yourself to do something is a great way to give yourself burnout.

9. Aim for something crazy that your excited about and know it’ll take time. Stop playing it small, you’re much less likely to stick with something you can only imagine mildly improving your life. Get moving working towards a big end goal.

10. Add habits slowly once you have power behind them- like a character thats unmotivated you can’t use willpower alone to do everything. But when you give your character and yourself a good reason to spring into action you know they will. Get clear on why you’ve chosen your habit and write it down to remind yourself every day.

11. Write down what you want to work on the next day before bed. That way you wont have to come up with tasks on the spot, you’ll just know what you have to do.

12. Limit ‘Low Fun’ activities. These are thing you do just because they exist. I’d much rather be hanging out with friends then watching cat videos and when I get in the flow of writing I love that a lot more than flicking through Insta. Recognizing whats actually fun and what’s a time filler will really free up your schedule.

13. Focus on Completion. It’s so easy to hop from task to task, googling things as soon as they come up, going back to check the MC’s eye color-again etc. These little tasks can completely derail you and destroy your momentum. Instead, make a note to correct it later and then keep moving forward.

14. Just hit send. Stop thinking so much about what others will think. If you’re worried about not having a big enough audience or not having the best work just know that these feed each other. The more times you go through the process the better you’ll be and the bigger your fan base will be. Just start getting your reps in.

15-18 Motivation Resources

15. Podcasts

  • Don’t Keep Your Day Job
  • Entrepreneurs on Fire
  • The Happiness Lab
  • Write now
  • Being boss
  • Level up Your Course

16. Entrepreneurial Books

17. Books on Writing

18. Youtube

  • Author Brittany Wang
  • Hello Tyne (Mine)
  • Better Ideas
  • Writing with Jenna Moreci

19-20 When you ‘Fail’

19. Any step forward is a good step, even if you don’t think you’ll be able to do it consistently. Setting goals only works if you have motivation but any day you move forward leads you to a better tomorrow

20. You can start over and re-set at any time. Take ever day as it is and don’t define yourself by your past failures. Things will come up, your job is to be comfortable letting the small fires burn instead of getting out the firehose anytime you see the spark. Feel comfortable letting problems sit for a moment so that you can work on you passions. Actions speak louder than words so take the action today that makes you a writer

10 ways to kill your passions, develop burnout and utterly destroy your life

I never thought of myself as a youtuber, as a writer, as a designer. Even when I’d created my fifth channel, finished my second manuscript, or designed the perfect dorm room. I used to be so happy, creating new and fun things everyday. Then, not long after I graduated college, all the joy and happiness just… went away.

I thought that I’d finally reached the level of adulthood that everyone talks about. It’s rough earning a living, you’re going to hate your jobs, you’re going to fail, you’re going to give up on you passions and make way for excuses.

I’ve done a lot in my few years but I’ve yet to be satisfied. In the last month I’ve both reached my top limit for burnout, noticed it, recovered from it and started reaching my audience in a more direct and impactful way than ever. So I’d like to share with you two things.

Everything I’ve Done to Destroy my Chances of Succeeding & The things I Will Never do Again

Over Research Killed my Passion

I’ve always had high hopes and too much passion. So when I started a new social media and found that I enjoyed using it my next step was to read every article online about how to cultivate an audience and make money on it. I loved Instagram until I was told that all my photos should have a consistent color and style. This limited everything I put out.

Then I heard that travel influencing on Instagram was the most difficult to break into. Well thats the niche I had picked and so I all but gave up on Instagram. In retrospect that was an awful idea- I was aboard in Japan at the time and if I hadn’t taken the word of other so seriously then I could have been confident in myself while building some kind of fallowing. My most viewed post to date is the one I put out directly before I was told I couldn’t break into travel influencing

Brand Identity Distracted Me from What’s Important

I made five different youtube channels, one for each topic and style. Whenever I’d take vacation days I’d redesign my website to match my new since of self. I started trying to force my whole life into a box of exactly what I wanted to look like online. I was trying to make myself pick just one identity and trying to decide what that looked like was killing me.

See I’ve always like two very opposite things. I’m both a motivational pastel optimist and the edgy eboy who wears all black and listens to murder podcasts all day. I’d found a way to combine these things in my novels but when it came to making all my platforms cohesive, well I’d forbidden myself from posting a certain kind of content without ever deciding what I wanted my brand identity too look like. And in the process of making myself look perfect online I’d taken away my personal identity as well as made myself look plastic and un interesting to everyone who found my content.

Not Listening to my Gut Wasted Hours of my Time

It all started when I was 17 and was researching how to sell my book. I was told I needed to start a blog, have a email list, post content three times a week etc. As I was researching how to blog I ran across affiliate marketing. Well why not make money on my blog, right? Well when I tried to get all the information I could about how to make that kind of money, I found all the passive income myths.

Every step of the way I didn’t like what I was doing. I just wanted to be a published author yet I kept doing what influencers told me I should be doing. Being so motivated to ‘do everything right’ I’d lost all the heart and soul that came with making the decisions that felt right and that I’d put more time and energy into doing correctly.

Trying to Do it All on My Own Wasted my Time

Not only did I waste thousands of hours by being cheep and not hiring graphic designers, developers, proof readers etc. I never even asked anyone if they thought it was a good idea. I was so caught up in myself thinking that everyone would love my product/ email sign up bonus/ youtube video that I never asked my audience if that was something they were interested in.

So I spent hundreds of hours developing a skill in order to create a product that no one wanted to look at, let alone spend money on.

Focusing on the Tools Instead of the Content was an Excuse

I can’t be a real youtuber, I don’t have a DSLR and a blue yeti. I can’t be a real writer, I haven’t edited my novel enough, what if there’s a spelling error? Well when I finally had the editor, finally had the microphone then I held myself to a whole new level of content that I had no business making. Before I’d been taking myself so much less seriously and enjoyed the process more. Spending $100 or $1000 on tech/help just made me think I had to justify it and create something so much better than what I was before. Which was impossible.

I’d also used it as a excuse to not make my best work, to not submit my work to publishers, and discount an success I got. Oh I passed 30K views? Well people must be making fun of it. What do I do for work? Well I have this little side project I’m working on… I thought that because I couldn’t spend thousands of dollars on what I was told I needed that I wasn’t a real ___ yet. So I didn’t have to try as hard right?

Putting Money First Created no Profit

Well looking back over my favorite manuscript and comparing my 10th and 15th drafts I can tell you that I got so obsessed with what would sell that I took all the selling points (uniqueness) out of the draft. When I forced myself to make videos that I thought would get views and thus ad revenue I stopped putting out content as regularly, as I couldn’t think of infinite niche content, and thus lost the small fallowing I had.

Whenever I started a project thinking about how to make money off of it it always ended up sucking. The money I have made all ways came as an afterthought. People can smell an ad from miles away and when you’re just trying to sell something there is no audience in place who wants to be advertised to. If you get an audience first they will tell you if they want merch or if their the type who will use affiliate links.

Too High of Standers Meant that noting was ever Published

Endless proofreading, editing, cutting, restarting and otherwise delaying projects made it impossible to keep any kind of consistent upload schedule. But more than that, whenever I put out work that didn’t do as well or wasn’t absolutely perfect I got wrapped up in a spiral of self hate.

Then whenever I needed to put out content it was impossible to motivate myself. I knew it was going to take a long time, assumed that no one would see it or like it, and associated it with hating myself. So why even bother except for to fulfill some arbitrary goal I had for myself with no reward and no end.

Not Specifying My Work Time Made me Develop Burnout Faster

I used to try to spend my every free moment working on a project or learning something new. My youtube feed was all educational, I only had entrepreneur podcasts saved, my social feeds where full of influencers in my genre so that I could study what their techniques were. My every waking moment, even when I was trying to relax, was full of things for me to consider and actively think about.

I thought that not blocking out time was alright but then I ended up working 24/7. I never let myself rest. Little did I know the times you let your mind rest are the most important for coming up with unique, creative ideas that you’re passionate about.

Forcing Myself to be Ready to Soon Turned me Into a Failure

I’m just going to run away and become a writer, I said, and I moved to Japan for three months with only $2000 to my name. I’d never set pass/fail goal for myself before that. I thought ‘fake it till you make it’ would just carry me though it. I’d have to sink or swim. Well turns out if you don’t give yourself reasonable goals and celebrate achieving them then your brain isn’t going to instantly rewire it’s self and turn you into a major success. Who knew?

If I’d taking a bit more time and done a bit more soul searching/ growing up, I could have enjoyed my first month in Japan a lot more. I wouldn’t have been trying to build a business and instead worked on passion projects and sharing stories people might have actually found interesting.

Being Afraid of Judgment Made it Harder to Find an Audience

I was so self aware regarding what I put online that I didn’t want to take the risk and put out something with lots of personality. I didn’t want to be ridiculed or made fun of. So instead of putting out one video with very strong opinions I sprinkled them through many different channels. I never ended up finding the people who thought the same way as me because I never put myself out there.

I heavily moderated what I let say or do online and ended up seeming like a shy, worry wort with no personality all because I was afraid of loosing the few viewers I had. If I’d just been true to myself I would have been able to connect with people so much easier.

In conclusion, you’re going to make mistakes and thats ok. Try not to be a perfectionist, take risks, stay focused and spend your time enjoying life. Whatever happens will happen all you can do is try to recognize when you’re making a bad decision and try to mediate the damages. Everyone has to find their own path and theres never just one way of doing anything. Learn to trust yourself and go forth doing what makes the world a better place.

I wish you the best of luck.

The Fiction Writer’s Ultimate Guide to Using Pinterest for Your Author Platform // Resource List

I find the sheer number of blogs/ posts/ and videos about any given topic overwhelming. When it comes to creating an online presence, there’s enough to do already. So I’ve limited the list for you. Each link should provide comprehensive and/or a unique look at its section so that you can use the best advice for where ever you are feeling stuck.

If this too feels overwhelming I recommend you at least take a look at the one time tasks and take your time checking them off one by one. These not only permanently boost the feeling/ look of your Pinterest profile but also will help you with your SEO immensely. This would include:

  • Setting up your business account
  • Connecting it to other platforms
  • Creating your bio
  • Setting up a board for every topic you can think of and making the empty ones secret so that you can easily organize your pins as you run across them or make them
  • Creating your board descriptions
  • Putting your best boards on your website and adding a pin it button
  • Considering and looking over an autopinner or another post scheduler

Resource List.pngYou may even want to pin this post so when you are ready to start creating pins and giving them descriptions, check back in to make sure you hit the high points. With that being said allow me to present this summarized slice of the internet.

Your Main Goal:

Create a visual experience of your philosophy and your author brand.

Best Link For a Complete Overview & why Pinterest is important: 

Pinterest Traffic for Bloggers: How We Get 300,000+ Monthly Visits

34 Strategic Ways You Can Use Pinterest to Market Your Book and Your Author Brand

Set Up Your Business Account:

Pinterest Business Accounts: The Definitive Guide to Getting Started

Create your bio:

How To Write A Pinterest Bio That Attracts Followers

HOW TO WRITE THE PERFECT PINTEREST PROFILE

Don’t forget to include a CTA or Call to Action to invite the viewer to engage with you elsewhere. Refer back to your why and make sure you are inviting people to do what alines with your goal.

Connect your Pinterest to your website:

WordPress  ▽  Wix

Note: You can only claim your website if you have and upgraded account on Wix or have a WordPress business plan

Add the Pin it button to your website:

Make your ‘Pin It’ Button look perfect

If you are going the Plugin route check out: 11 Best WordPress Pinterest Plugins to Increase your Pins & Traffic in 2019

Put your boards on your website:

WordPress   ▽ Wix

Board Ideas:

Remember, you’re trying to make boards your audience wants to look at, here are some ideas:

  • Board of story prompts
  • Board based on the aesthetic of your book
  • Fandoms/ related books
  • Your favorite books
  • Aesthetic pictures of books
  • Quotes that your target audience would relate too
  • Drawings/ pictures that convey the feeling/ genre of your book (horror, romance etc.)
  • Posts from your blog  (with an email opt-in graphic that links to an email sign-up page on your site)
  • Posts from your youtube
  • Posts from your Instagram
  • Behind the scenes boards for world building, character creation, and plotting
  • Refer to your unique selling points list

What is your mission or the message you’d like your readers to hear?

Write good board descriptions:

How to Write Pinterest Board Descriptions That Get Results

Write Amazing Pinterest Board Descriptions With This Template

How to optimize your Pinterest boards

Where to make Pins:

Canva   ▽   Photopea

Best Practices:

Look:

  •  600 x 900 is optimal or otherwise quite long
  • Bright/colorful
  • Simplistic
  • Include a logo if you can, people can change the descriptions

Pinterest for Authors: How to create a pin for your book

Pinterest for Authors: Your Essential Guide

Posting:

A word from Pinterest

Write good Pin descriptions:

HOW TO WRITE A PERFECT PINTEREST PIN DESCRIPTION

6 Tips for Writing Effective Pin Descriptions on Pinterest

Rule the Pinterest Search Bar: How to Write Great Pinterest Image Descriptions

Pinterest SEO in 2019: How to Optimize Your Pins for the Changes

Authors/account to for Inspiration or Following

Find the flow and make things easier:

Look into an auto pinner that can post a few times in the morning afternoon and evening. This makes your boards easier to find. I was against this at first, but you can set them up to pull from secret boards you’ve set up ahead of time.

You can also try Later.com to plan your custom pins.

For the AuthorTubers:

 

 

Fiction Writers: Here are The Nine Never Talked About Rules to Launching Your Author Platform from Scratch (With Examples of How Others Started)

My Anecdote // Background for why I think this is the best way to build an audience

My first experience learning about the self-marketing side of being an author was reading a book called ‘your first 1000 copies’. I picked it up my first year of college and religiously followed everything it told me to.

I wanted to be a full-time writer/author so badly I blindly followed any advice I could get.

So I read every book in the library, every blog post, scowerd Youtube, took online courses. The more I studied the more I leaned.

You need a blog and an email list, promote your blog on Pinterest, get on the platforms your audience is on. Redesign your website, it needs these pages. Be an AuthorTuber, put out videos twice a week, put out Instagram posts daily, use a Pinterest auto pinner. Remake your website again. if you have multiple ideas for your youtube videos you need different accounts. But authors don’t make money from selling books: set up one-on-one coaching, sell corses, get public speaking engagements and do everything you can… everything except for writing.

I constantly felt overwhelmed, like I had too much on my plate. My love for writing deformed and became relentless self-promotion. It took up all my time and I never had the chance to write. I was slipping in and out of burnout every day and developed depression related to my identity. All the sources said I needed to have one solid, unified online presence but I was having a hard time trying to fit myself into one box. I thought I was the flawed one for being a ‘jack of all trades’ type and tried to cut out every other avenue of my personality.

I knew there was an issue. A work acquaintance once asked me: “what do you do for fun?”

I replied, “I work”

“But when you’re not working?” He asked.

“I go home and find more work to do.”

Then three things happened.

  1. I moved to Japan so I could dedicate myself to my work
  2. My best friend built a pretty substantial following on another platform without any of the research, just doing what they were passionate about.
  3. I released my first short story and it sold zero copies

I was trying to do everything perfectly and plagued with self-doubt. I talk like this was a long time ago, but it was earlier this week.

Well, I ran across this article and realized I was taking myself too seriously.

I’m not a big brand and no one wants to follow or “be friends” with marketing. When I look at a blog, a youtube channel, any social media, I look for people with personality. My brand screemd ‘love me’ & ‘buy me’ &  ‘look mom’ & ‘newbie’

So how should small writers start their platform? What are the best practices and how much should you stick to them? How will you actually grow? Well In all truth, I don’t know. What works for one person may not work for the next. But let me share with you what I know in the hopes that you get put on the right path.

Difficult roads often lead to beautiful Destinations

  1. Help relentlessly. Your job is to help your audience as much as possible. That’s how people will find you and respect you. Make a profile of the type of reader you want to attract, think about what kind of content they want to find online as well as what content makes them happier. Not what they need. But what they are looking for. Your writing will provide value for someone, an escape, motivation, inspiration, that’s what you want to convey even before the launch of your book.
  2. Go against the grain and fuck the flow. If you are competing with everyone else in your genre then you’re competing for second place. You have to break out and create some new, different, unique, be the originator for this topic so that you are the influencer on that topic. Otherwise, you’ll just be competing for second place. If all you’re doing is following advice you will never stand out against all the other people following the same advice. Take a stand, think for yourself and most importantly be yourself.
  3. Be absolutely and completely genuine. Actually be a person, not a brand. Post, comment on other people’s posts, reply to people… That’s how social media is meant to be used and using it properly will be the biggest difference in how much that platform promotes you.
  4. Never surrender. Know that if you keep working at it you will eventually stumble across the right topic, the right platform, the right audience. My favorite example in the super carlin brothers who made vlogs back and forth every day for a year before eventually discovering that viewers also shared the same passion for Pixar movies and theories that they did. They filled an untapped market. Over the next few years, their channel has blown up and branched out to topics higher up in the pop culture sphere.
  5. Master your fate and don’t leave things up to chance. Know the rules before you break them. Knowing the best practices won’t hurt you, getting too wrapped up in them will. There’s nothing wrong with doing things right as long as it doesn’t get in the way of your creative prosses. You need t find the balance that works for you.
  6. Give your all to everything you start. Stop putting out content just to have content out on a specific day and start putting out high-quality content. Only pick two social media to start on so you don’t overload yourself. Determine what social media your reader likely uses and focus your efforts there. Then choose the one you like the most. Over time and with patience you’ll build your own system to post high-quality content on schedule and then you can spread out to other platforms.
  7. Create Remarkable Content. Fallow the 80/20 or 80 percent rule. You want to make content that isn’t just helpful but remarkable, something so great that everyone wants to share it. But… putting that level of pressure on yourself is deadly. Take stock of what the top 20% best performing content looks like and work on the project to 80 percent completion. What you learn doing the first 80 percent will make the next time you do the project a lot easier and the last 20% will take up the most of your time and create the least amount of improvement.
  8. Follow your intuition… When you get excited by an idea, TRY IT so you have no regrets. Realize when you’re creating excuses and overcome them. You never know what is going to be the piece of content that blows up. It’s been studied and proven that your intuition or ‘gut feeling’ recognize patterns faster than the conscious mind and will point you in the right direction. We shut down what feels right with excuses and those tend to be our regrets. If it costs less than $20 or will take less than four hours to do, there is no reason why you shouldn’t at least try.

9. Heres my biggest tip: Start with something searchable. As creators, a lot of our content is actually impossible to find. No one is looking for the book title of the novel you haven’t launched yet. So start with a genre or fandom your passionate about, (and is related to your book) something that people are already looking for. A great example of this is the youtube channel ‘hello future me’ where the creator, Tim, originally was making theories and plot break downs of famous works of pop culture and then started to make new content about more general topics, like creating your magic system, but still referencing the fandoms he built his audience around. Then he released a book on the topic.

That’s it. Those are the things I’ve learned from doing marketing wrong for five years.  I’m going to be doing from here on out. So if you want to find out if they work I guess you’ll just have to follow me on some platform to see if I start to grow exponentially 🙂

Instagram • Pinterest • Youtube

 

Let me know, what do you wish you had been told when you just started out?

How Fiction Writers Find Their Audience // Make an Actionable Plan and Create Compelling Content

The reader profile. Essentially a character sheet that lets you envision the person you’re actually writing your book for. It could be anyone, maybe even someone very similar to you.

I thought I knew my target audience inside and out, being that they are essentially a younger version of me. I thought this old business trick was overrated and I could do it all in my head. Oh, how I was wrong! When I finally completed this one page I was able to find and focus in on the elements that really mattered.

How to do use it:

Your Reader

  • Fill out this sheet (example below)
    • Figure out what they are searching for and where they’re looking
    • Focus your content creation on the platforms you think they use the most
    • Figure out a way to address their problems, fears, and anxieties so your content becomes extremely relevant
    • Realize what makes them happy so you can make sure to include that in your mix
    • Learn about related works and fandoms so you can discover people to collaborate with and the best practices of big names
    • Connect with your audience over shared interests so you become a person instead of a brand

 

Here’s mine, all filled out.

Copy of Untitled Design

So what did I learn? I need to be more active on Reddit • I want to make more content that inspires confidence • Most of my content isn’t outwardly very gay, I can definitely dive into that more • I can talk about other fandoms that I like, such as anime or specific gay novels, and I’ll probably meet more people like him.

This also informs how I talk to my audience. My specific reader wants to go into a science field as is a bit older and more mature than I originally thought. I’m not too different from him so I shouldn’t hold my self in such high regard above him. I need to talk with my audience more like peers.

Then I just needed to figure out what kind of content I could put out on those three platforms that help anxious people, connect with anime watchers, or helps people moving out to college for the first time. Topics like that will be much more helpful than what I’m doing right now… Helplessly sharing my writing prosses on insta and my blog hoping people will pity me and buy my books while acting like I have some kind of authority.

So, I took each different piece and list out 10 ideas per platform, per interest and suddenly I have 150 new ideas for posting. I can also make sure to fallow plenty of new communities on those platforms to start commenting and introducing myself in all of them.

Fill out the form and feel free to download it or save it to Pinterest for later. It should be easy to edit in most software but I’d recommend Canva or Photopea. I hope this helps you focus in! But anyway, thats all I know. I wish you the best of luck.

How I Plan my Author Instagram Posts, September 2019 Printable

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Right-Click this Image to save it, or save it to Pinterest 

I know September already started but I wanted to put this out in case anyone else wants to use it!  I recently stumbled across this video by Bethany Atazadeh. I’ve always had trouble being consistent on my various social platforms because I get self-conscious about what type of content I should be posting. But following along with her video made it extremely simple!

It didn’t even take me 60 minutes to do! If you’re looking to plan out or schedule your Instagram posts this is definitely the way I’d recommend. Feel free to save my little calendar, it’s easy to edit in Canva, Photoshop, and other photo editors, or you can print it out and write it by hand.
Best of luck to you!

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