Things have been quiet on this blog. I know. I thought that through working a part time day job and freelancing, I’d have more time. But instead I’ve been joyously busier than ever. It’s been quite wonderful. I wasn’t expecting to achieve the many things that I have these past six months. There’s been radio, TV, writing and teaching opportunities. You can follow what’s happening with me between sporadic blogs on Facebook and Instagram.
A little over a week ago I signed with a literary agent (Jacinta di Mase Management)! I’m so excited to be on the path to writing a memoir. After many years of writing a blog and in the media, I want to achieve my dream of being a published author.
Today my proposal, which I spent hours on, was sent to publishers. Fly, my little words, fly!
Thanks to everyone who believe in me – especially those who read my work and publish it in the media. A big thanks to Writers Victoria who have been helpful to talk to and work with. I met Jacinta at a Writers Victoria event last year – I almost didn’t go and only stayed half the day because I had something else on later and I was just about to go overseas. But I went , and I met Jacinta – it was serendipitous.
I’m so excited to be working with Jacinta!
I posted the following advice in a blogging group last weekend. I know there are a few bloggers who follow this blog, so I’ll share my advice here too.
After many, many years of blogging, which led to writing for the media, I have finally been picked up by a literary agent. I’ve had a little bit of publisher interest recently and so the obvious step was to approach an agent. We are working on polishing my book proposal, and then it will be sent to publishers.
For a while I didn’t think I was a successful blogger because most brands weren’t interested in me. Sometimes I think we measure our success on what others are doing: sponsored posts, paid travel reviews and #gifted items. I see a lot of new bloggers asking when they can expect to make an income from their blog, or why their stats are so low.
My advice: don’t measure your self worth on numbers. Create blog and social media posts that people enjoy reading and keep coming back to. Catch the eyes of editors (and brand managers if that’s your thing). Put yourself out there by sharing your work on social media. But don’t get disheartened. Success – whatever it is to you – doesn’t happen overnight.
I don’t have tens of thousands of social media followers on each platform, and now I don’t blog often enough to have over 50,000 visitors a month (I used to). But I do try to create quality blog posts and share interesting, fun and engaging content on social media. I found a niche (yes a niche does help!) and spend a lot of time in that niche’s online spaces. I engage with my audience and I regularly pitch blog posts (and unwritten articles) to editors of news sites. Sometimes they read my blog and commission articles or republish content. It has taken years.
When I submitted my first draft of my book proposal, I included a letter from a reader, saying why she wants to read my book. She has the same skin condition as me, and wrote that because of my words, she now has the confidence to wear a dress in the summer as she doesn’t feel ashamed anymore. This means more to me than any brand asking me to write about their product, or a bajillion followers. If you change one reader’s life, it’s worth blogging.
If you have a dream to be a writer – of a novel or opinion columnist, or even writing sponsored posts on your blog – just keep writing. Good luck!
Here’s a list of niche-specific (and wider) writing Facebook groups that might be useful to you.