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Publetariat Dispatch: A + B = You (The Secret Equation Every Author Needs to Know)

Publetariat: For People Who Publish!
In today’s Publetariat Dispatch, the duolit team offers help with identifying your writing style and target audience.

Who are you?

I don’t mean in the sense of your name, age, or personality.

I mean, as an author, who are you?

If you had to describe your writing – not a specific book, but just your personal writing style —to a stranger, what would you say?

It’s okay if you don’t know the answer right now.

Because by the end of this post, you will, thanks to our two secret equations (Yeah, that’s right, you’re getting a two-for-one!).

Defining who you are as an author is about more than just your genre, your book, or your blog.

It’s about what makes you unique.

And once you know what makes you unique, you can find the right readers who will appreciate your unique appeal.

So how do you find out who you are as an author?

Easy – you just have to do the math.

Don’t worry, I’ve got two simple formulas to help you along and all tests will be open book and open notes!

Both of these equations will give you two key elements:

  • Something fans can relate to (in this case, a well-known author)
  • Something that makes you unique

It’s up to you which one fits your writing personality best (Or, if you want to get really crazy, you can use both!).

1. The Unique Twist Algorithm

Start this equation by choosing a well-known author with a very similar writing style and genre (it has to be someone fans of your genre would definitely know and like).

Now take that author’s work and add a twist that describes why you are not only different, but *better* than that author (yeah, it’s bold, embrace it, my friends).

So you’ll wind up with a declaration something like one of these:

  • I’m like Nicholas Sparks, but with more laughs and less tears
  • I’m like Stephanie Meyer, but with stronger female characters

2. The Love Child Theorem

This second equation is my favorite. If you straddle a couple of genres or feel like you sort of embody a mix of two completely different styles, this one’s for you.

Start again with a well-known author who shares similarities to your writing style and genre.

Then, add another author.

Someone very different from Author A. Whether it’s in terms of genre or writing style or subject matter, just choose someone different, but who is also similar to you in some way.

Put those two authors together and proclaim yourself their simply unique lovechild.

I, for example, consider myself the lovechild of Joshilyn Jackson (smart, Southern, sassy) and Carl Hiaasen (fun, colorful, Floridian).

Try it out! You’ll come up with a statement like one of these:

  • I write science fiction like Ray Bradbury, but my characters are more like something from John Steinbeck.
  • I write a mix of fantasy and political thrillers like the love child of Stephen King and Brad Metzler.

So, which equation fits you best?

Try’em both on for size and figure out which one highlights your unique author attributes the best, and then share it with us in the comments!

Once you have a short synopsis of your writing style, you’ll have a much easier way to introduce yourself to new fans. Even better,  you can do a little internet stalking/research on your new author doppelgangers to find out who their fans are and where they hang out!

This is a reprint from Duolit.



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