Welcome to day 13 of the Basics of Author Online Presence Challenge. To catch up on previous tasks, go here.
Remember task 11? You had to share your writing. This task is for the same reason, only on a much larger scale.
Why? Because I said so 😉
Seriously, being on a writing platform like Wattpad is good for your writing, your online presence and for you as a writer.
Being on a writing platform has several benefits, as explained in my post “9 Reasons Why Wattpad is Good for your Writing”.
- Reason 1 Wattpad is good for your writing: Writing more.
- Reason 2 Wattpad is good for your writing: Community.
- Reason 3 Wattpad is good for your writing: Competitions.
- Reason 4 Wattpad is good for your writing: Having your work read.
- Reason 5 Wattpad is good for your writing: Learning to be a reader.
- Reason 6 Wattpad is good for your writing: Experimenting with different writing styles.
- Reason 7 Wattpad is good for your writing: Learning to deal with comments on your babies.
- Reason 8 Wattpad is good for your writing: Having a deadline.
- Reason 9 Wattpad is good for your writing: Experimenting with different genres.
The point of being on a writing platform, besides all the above reasons, is explained in my post “Why Authors should have a Writing Platform”. Here’s just a taste of why you should have a writing platform:
- Getting your name out there.
- Building your brand.
- Name recognition.
- Garnering fans across platforms.
Sounds like all the things that make up your author online presence 😉
Not compelling enough? Alright, here’s something you need to remember: there are several paths to the road of becoming a published author. The one thing they all have in common: great writing.
And how do we get to the point of being great writers? We write. A lot.
Whether that’s by joining a writing community like Wattpad (I already told you my nine reasons for doing so) or one like Writing.com which focuses more on critiques (I’ve covered how to give a good critique) or a writing community that only works in one language like INK: Skryf in Afrikaans (I’ve shared how awesome that’s been for me) or even one where you get paid to write like on Patreon (read the interview with two awesome authors using this platform to get a handle on how it works), it doesn’t really matter how. It only matters that you do. Writing more and getting other writers to tell you what’s working and what isn’t, is the only way to grow.
No matter what you decide to do, your profile must stand out.
For example, to make your Wattpad page stand out: a proper bio piece, links to your other social media networks (it has to be the full URL if you’re going to mention it in your about piece), a cool header, your profile pic, and a reading list. This makes your profile interesting even without your current WIP (work in progress).
Don’t believe me (even after all those cool links), check out my Wattpad profile. Perhaps it’ll inspire you…
So if you’re going to join Wattpad, there’s a couple of things you need to know.
Besides all of the above, you need to have a story you’re going to share.
Please don’t freak out. Sharing your writing publicly is good for you.
I’m not saying you should share the novel you’re going to traditionally publish – that’s a bad idea, for everything you share online is considered published. No, share something else.
Like your flash fiction pieces. I’m sharing mine on Wattpad and they’ve had quite a few reads and the book has been added to several reading lists. That’s a good thing.
You also need to share something closer to what you’re going to sell (the novel). I propose writing short stories (published as chapters) that are part of a bigger story. You can always plot the whole book out before you start writing. The only important thing is that your writing is proofread and contains no spelling or grammar errors or any typos. Readers don’t want to trip over your horrible spelling: they want to enjoy your story.
There’s a lot more to know about how Wattpad works (tags, covers, titles, groups, clubs, etc.) and you can find all of that, and more, in my post “How Wattpad Works”.
Getting over the fear of sharing your writing, writing more and making friends is what this task is all about.
Did you join Wattpad? Did you fill in your author bio with all of your links? Great stuff! Now add books to your reading list. Follow people whose writing you like (most likely the authors of the books you’ve added to your reading list). Share your experience with Wattpad on your blog, Twitter (using #AuthorOPChal) and here in the comments. We’d love to visit you on Wattpad, so add your profile URL in the comments too.
Author: Ronel Janse van Vuuren
Ronel writes dark fantasy filled with mythology and folklore, some of which can be read on Wattpad and on her blog Ronel the Mythmaker. When not leading her Rottweiler pack or arguing with her characters, she’s writing award-winning fiction.