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Next up is chapter seven of You Are a Writer (So Start Acting Like One) by Jeff Goins, where we learn about what a brand truly is and how it relates to writers. If you are tempted to skip this chapter, don’t! This is something all writers need to understand and, unfortunately, a topic that many people in all industries just skim over. This helps to set up your writing and how you want to change the world in the future. Let’s begin!
What do you think of when you thinking of the word ‘brand’? Do logos pop in your mind? Do specific people come up? Just think about this word for a second and what you believe it means. Often we have specific meanings attached to words that can often be inaccurate and end up actually hurting our business and writing rather than helping it.
Writers especially may have an inaccurate view of having a ‘brand’, as Goins said, “One of the biggest mistakes writers make-one of the biggest ones I made-is believing they don’t need a brand.” He also warned, to those who may think they can coast along without a brand, “A brand will happen whether you like it or not.” So don’t think you can get away from it or hide is under a bush.
Okay, so we need a brand…what does that actually mean?
Goins explained, “A brand is who you are. But it’s more than that. It’s your truest self. The part people remember.”
Still sounds intimidating and vague? Goins (thankfully) broke a brand down into three elements that we all need to work on:
- Name: This can be your real name, a ‘pen name’ or a business name. I identify as The Pink Bookworm and use that in my social media, website and elsewhere. Many people identify me easily when I use that name.
- Image: You can use a photo of yourself or a logo. I use my business logo and even if I change it or adjust it later on, I know that a couple elements with always stay consistent (mostly the pink part, connecting directly to my business name).
- Voice: The voice is the part that will take a lot longer to truly identify and build from. It has taken me a couple years, but I’m finally getting comfortable with my voice on here and elsewhere. This one is mostly all about practice, so don’t feel down if you still have a ways to go on growing this part of your writing world.
“You will have to work to find your voice.”-Goins
I confess that some of my earlier writings on here were very proper, almost robotic at times, depending on the topic. And I’ve had to go through phases where I almost copied someone else’s style just to see if I liked it better than how I had been writing before. But thankfully, writing, writing, and more writing eventually fleshed out my voice, helped me see where my strengths are and where I need to just accept that I’ll never be able to change (I still like using old-fashioned verbiage at times, even if to me it sounds too serious, it’s just the way I work).
So take heart. As you write, then modify and adjust, your voice will shine through. You just need to keep putting yourself out there, see what sticks, what you like, what you hate, and what needs changed ASAP.
Because your brand is out there. You just have to be patient and be willing to find it.
If you would like to join us, you can get a copy of the book at You Are a Writer (So Start Acting Like One) And if you want to join the conversation, post your thoughts below or tag us on social media with #thepinkbookwormclub I look forward to hearing your thoughts!
When you’re done with chapter seven, be sure to share your thoughts below!