In addition to the advice I shared in my first post (The Beginning of Personal Branding), knowing if you are going a traditional or self-publishing route influences your personal branding decisions. Self-published authors are responsible for the entirety of their projects, if not directly then through a management role, and that will influence how you present yourself.
Either route you pursue, you need to consider the following:
- What genre are you writing in?
- Who is your audience?
- What makes you unique?
- How do you want to present yourself?
I will be approaching literary agents first and working with one along a traditional publishing path. I have two books . The first is an adult sci fi/fantasy novel, North to Here. The second is a picture book I authored and illustrated, Finding Fred. As I thought about describing these books to an agent, I considered the commonalities between both books. Both are highly imaginative. The picture book is very visual, while the novel pulls from all five senses to create an engaging adventure. I believe adults who would enjoy my novel would also enjoy reading the picture book to their children. Specifically, my audience pulls from the "grew up on Jim Henson crowd."
In addition to my books, I want to include my existing Etsy site and possibly expand my artistic endeavors to include illustrating for other authors. I am still working to iron out the linkages and will probably be solidifying these ideas on this website over time. This is definitely an area where I would love to have some guidance from an agent. But these pieces definitely make me unique.
As I continue to work on personal branding, I am creating a short list to work from. This includes adding some of my artwork to this website. I believe it is prudent to wait until I can confer with an agent before posting illustrations from my picture book. There is a lot to learn about copyright and I don't want to make a misstep. I also have some sketches I did of some of the characters in my novel, so I might post some of those.
As far as presenting myself goes, I'm working on untangling and reweaving all my social media and existing websites together here. I'll post some artwork. I'll get a good headshot...I hope.
I'd love for you to share what steps you've taken to create your own personal brand. Feel free to share information in the comments!