Throughout my career I have belonged to many writers’ groups which I consider the most important tool a writer can have to improve their skills. The one thing I loved critiquing as a writers’ group member was short stories. Standalone short stories are not easy to write. To produce a beginning and ending with a full engaging plot in the middle with a limited number of words and getting an audience to love it is almost impossible for me. Yet, in all writing groups I have participated in, most members came up with awesome short pieces. I always wondered what would happen to these stories, and often asked if they were part of a short stories book project. More often than not, the answer was disappointing as I was inevitably told that there were no publishing plans for them. They were actually just the product of exercising their writing skills. In very seldom cases would someone tell me that their short story actually inspired a book length project they were working on.
Knowing what I know now about promoting, I wish I could go back to all those writers who were just exercising their skills and give them some ideas on how to re-purpose those short stories for platform building. Here are a few tips:
· Blogging. Many believe that bloggers only post articles, poems or essays. But, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. It is through blogging that writers have the opportunity to share themselves with the audience. Creating a blog that features the author’s short stories among other things is an awesome way to generate a following.
· Another way to build a following through short stories is by publishing them in local newspapers. Finding out the publication programs of local media as well as other digital publications relevant to short stories is not only a way to build a follower platform, but it is the best way to build a writer’s resume, just in case one decides to embark in an agent search at some point.
· Invest some creativity in the short story delivery. Blogs don’t have to be completely in writing. There are also podcast and video blogs. So the short story author could actually perform the story as a skit on the blog. This could be done live and made interactive; it can even be promoted through social media, which in turn promotes the blog, generating even more followers.
Short stories are a quick read for an audience who lacks the time or attention span but still enjoys reading, viewing short audio or listening to video clips. Giving away short stories to your audience will pay off when the full-length book is ready as they will already be loyal fan. For information how we help authors visit us at www.readerviews.com or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.