This is the extremely tardy third part of three-part series “The Business of Writing.” Part I and Part II, while very old, still might be of some use when it comes to crafting a business plan and platforming. This third part is largely about self-care and growth opportunities.
You have your writing business plan in place, and you are starting to build your platform, now what? Well, now you need to turn the focus back on yourself through resume building, pursuing “writerly” learning opportunities, and self-care.
Always be on the lookout for ways to build your resume and presence. From writing contests and continuing to submit to magazines to guest blogging, there are solid opportunities to push yourself and your writing. You might not succeed in landing these gigs, but you will win by having another completed piece of writing that can be used for another purpose or set aside as a learning experience. So get out a calendar, write down potential contests or story deadlines that interest you, and then write them into your business writing plan.
Another aspect that should be included in a business writing plan should be learning opportunities. Workshops, conferences, writing groups, online courses . . . anything that is going to encourage you to strengthen your writing or simply refresh. Be on the lookout for these opportunities because they are invaluable. I have personally placed them in a section labeled “Personal Growth Goals.”
When I penned my now-out-of-date writing plan, I hadn’t slated any personal growth opportunities; however, they found me, and I attended BAEN’s Writer Symposium at GenCon in Indy, which completely recharged me. Since then, I’ve attended a local writing workshop, took a few Coursera courses, watched writer-targetted YouTube videos, to name a few things I’ve done. I’m planning also planning to attend 10MinCon–put together 10 Minute Novelists–in 2018, all things willing.
Educational opportunities don’t have to be expensive but do note that some writing conventions and workshops can cost an arm and a leg. So plan accordingly to save money if you desperately want to go to a particular one despite the price tag. A saving plan might be a welcomed addition to your writing plan.
Other educational possibilities might not even be about writing. These can be events related to a topic of interest and that is connected to your writing subjects, such as historical reenactments. So mark these on your writing business plan, too.
This last thing is not something I’ve added to my writing business plan, but after consideration, I think it is a must: self-care. Give yourself time off or a treat, particularly if you have achieved your yearly plan, or mostly did. From a trip to maybe a fancy pen, it is OK to treat yourself.