Creative and Memoir Writing  

          Carol Brennan King May 10, 2023

Welcome to my world!

Join me in one of my favorite places to think about issues of life, faith, and writing.

Carol Brennan King

Greetings Writers,

If you are here, it is because you are a writer. Remember, you don’t need to have someone tell you that you are a writer. You just need to be someone who, once you have overcome your fear of the expectations you have on what it means to be a writer, recognize that you are a writer.

You find it satisfying to play with words, the way an oil painter loves to play with oils. You both create lots of things no one else will ever see. BUT, you both also make things of beauty that move the viewer, that allow them  into a new world, your world.

Welcome again to the writers who have wandered into my room.

First, I am on a journey toward publication. I have been published – two poetry books for starters: Walkabout and The Empty Cross and lots of other things. But this is a book I am talking about publishing right now, and you are in the right place at the right time to go on that journey with me.

One thing I learned is that the writer must start working on building a platform or a way to connect directly with potential readers for your book. (from

You have to start building that platform at least six months before your book comes out. That means now! Reading this post and thinking about its content are your first steps. We’ll talk more about it next week.

But what is a writer’s platform? Jane Friedman addresses the challenge of defining a platform because it is defined in different ways by different teachers. I love her summary definition: it is an ability to sell books because of who you are or who you can reach.

As you build your platform, you need some solid planks that show you can sell books. Think about why someone would think you could sell your book. What kind of reading experience are you creating?

Have you been published before? Where? If someone googled you name, what would they find? You do know, prospective agents or publishers will google your name. A writer must be able to demonstrate that their book will make money, (sell a lot of copies) because even writing or selling books involves making money. And prior publications tell an agent your writing has already impressed someone enough to publish it.

Then who can you reach? This means “Do you know your audience, the people who will buy your book.” Think about who might want what you have to say or sell in your book? Is your audience accessible to you and do you know how to you reach them?

For example, I think my book will appeal to women largely, and women interested in their heritage. Men can be interested in genealogy as well, and if they have Irish ancestors, this book might be of special interest to them. Or anyone whose family sailed the Atlantic in the mid 1800’s to safety from the challenges of the period: politics, war, religious persecution, starvation, and famine.

Are you or can you get yourself visible enough that they will find and want to buy your book?

Don’t sweat it if you answered with a lot of no’s there. In the next weeks, we will talk more about How to Build a Platform. For the moment, open a file and name it Platform. In the next week, work on answering some of the questions posted above.

Some of you will have lots of answers. Others, lots of questions. Either way, every single writer must go down this path to publication.

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