A Fiction Writer should be their own Platform

Stress can kill you, take away what you believe in and recently for me, make you sick as hell.

The stress came about because of my worries for my NaNoWriMo project, a project which, like last year, fell on its face and hasn’t begun to start moving, even though I’ve prodded it.

The biggest reason for its flop is Platform.

That word is such a buzz word in blogging and writing right now. It’s very hard to get away from it.

The biggest problem I see with that word is another word, fiction.

Fiction writer’s create worlds. Sometimes we don’t know where the story is going, even with an outline, and because of that we can’t truly set up a Platform.

A Platform is supposed to be a guide for a project. 

If you’re a fiction writer, that’s more difficult because you may not know where the story is going from one chapter to the next.

Those who write self-help books can use Platforms really well, while the rest of us are left wondering why it doesn’t work when we try it.

Here are reasons why I believe Platforms don’t work for Fiction Writers:

  1. Most fiction writers don’t write for an audience, and those who do already have there established group of readers.
  2. Platforms don’t allow for movement. If things change in your life, you have this Tribe that knows you as one person, but if you go through a spiritual awakening that is different than the one your Tribe knows you as, you have to start over.
  3. Change. Life is filled with change, some of it under your control, most of it not. If your writing changes or you choose to write in another genre it may alienate your tribe.

You may want to create a Platform, but in creating a Platform you may not be taking into account your life changes, your writing changes and the biggest of all, You Change.

The change you go through personally may alienate your tribe or may create divisions in your life.

Creating a Platform shouldn’t be something difficult, for fiction writers maybe it shouldn’t be something at all.

Writers create stories, some of them have similarities that when put together as a collection ofr work show those similarities, but as we write we may not understand the similarities and may become annoyed by those telling us to write another book like our past book.

For me who’s never published, though I’ve written two novels, I just want to get a book on the shelf.

Looking for a Platform for my writing caused me so much stress in the last few weeks I became ill and with that I swore I’d never do what people expect me to write.

My Platform is I’m a writer of different genres, mostly Science Fiction or Fantasy based, but I’ll never limit myself to those two.

I choose that Platform because trying to pigeon hole myself made me sick.

Your Platform should be what makes you the person you’ve lived with for your life, never limit yourself to who you are, or your Platform.

Be your Platform!

I’d rather be my Platform than do something I wouldn’t be proud of.

The Delusion of Genre Classification

Delusions of...

I like the idea of trying to write a book in every genre.

China MIÉVille

Our idea of what our writing should be is covered up by labels.

These labels aren’t what we want, but a way for publishers to place our work in the market.

Each of us write different genres, but these genres shouldn’t limit who we are as writers.

Are we a Fantasy writer with their epic worlds and magical places?

Or possibly, a YA writer, creating worlds for teenagers to escape from reality and possibly discover someone in fiction who’s going through the same struggles they’re going through?

Then again, maybe your a Science Fiction writer, creating marvelous technology and doing amazing things in the future or some place among the stars.

Being any of these is great, but being the writer you want to be is more important than being classified as one genre or another.

Many writers write in different genres. Neil Gaiman has written children’s books, adult books, YA and comics. Stephen King may be the king of horror, but his Dark Tower series is fantasy.

Never let anyone tell you what you should write.

Even if you’re published, you can always write genres other than what you’re known for, even if you have to keep them to yourself for a while.

Writing is about discovery. Find the right story for you, whatever it is.

The genre isn’t as important as good writing.

Don’t define your writing by a genre classification, let others do that. Just write!

What’s your favorite genre to write? Answer in the comments.

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