I’m doing a workshop for the American Christian Fiction Writers this month, and I’m having a ball. The title is “Too shy to pitch and promote,” and I’m using this class to streamline the presentation for the Colorado Christian Writer’s Conference in Estes Park. I’m also using this class and my notes from giving the class in the past to write a little book on the same topic. It’ll only be offered as an eBook on CD or as a download and I’m going to send the download version free to all of those in the class that are helping me write it. I’m also going to send it free to those who register for that early bird class in Colorado.

It’s cool working on it this way. Since I’m working on it as a Q & A it is literally producing hundreds of emails, but it is producing great questions and great comments. We started talking about actually cultivating a ‘writing persona’ that will allow us to overcome shyness or if we aren’t that shy, that will allow us to project the professional image that we need to exhibit.

Then we turned our attention to platforms, what they are and why we need them. We looked at making pitches and preparing proposals going through each in detail. There were misconceptions and by the time questions were answered and discussion focused on each detail people have been saying things were becoming clear in a way that hasn’t happened before. Good discussion will do that.

People started posting their one-liners or ‘elevator pitches’ and their query letter and interview opener blurbs and they started critiquing them. As they worked on their blurbs and other people’s blurbs as well they started getting much better at seeing what they should be writing and better at writing them. Once again the discussion getting better and more focused.

We’re talking about marketing and having a marketing plan now. What should a writer expect to do and sharing ideas about marketing strategies we might could use. Talking about the various groups that comprise our platform and how we can grow that platform – talking about strategies for reaching those specific groups. We’ll go on to talk about how to get published, how to identify comparables and why. We’ll talk about what gets submissions rejected and how to avoid that. Depending on how our time goes and what the questions are there are a number of other subjects we may be able to address.

I’m very much enjoying the course and I believe it is producing a little book that others who haven’t been in the class may find useful.