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Monthly Archives: April 2016


children-playing

Whether you develop your character sketches at the beginning of the writing process or work on it throughout the time you are writing the first draft, your writing will be faulty if you don’t know why a character does what he does.In other words, what motivates your character?  If you don’t know why a character does what he or she does, neither will the reader. Everything a person does is for a reason. The deeper you understand that person’s reason, the better you understand what makes the character tick and your readers will find it easier to identify with that character.

In my last post (IDENTIFY) I mentioned that some of the motivating factors relate to past events in a character’s life, also I mentioned relationships with others are motivating factors, however, other factors do apply and it is worth the effort to explore these motivating factors.

The Character’s Mission

The character’s mission is the why he or she is in the story. This is not only a motivating factor for the character, but it is also a motivating factor for the author. The protagonist’s (main character) mission is usually the main plot of the story. The main antagonist’s main mission is to thwart the protagonist’s main mission. Other characters in the book also have main missions as they relate to the story line. If a character doesn’t have a mission, there’s really no reason for him to be in a story. Also, every character in a scene should also have a mission for that scene.

Archetype

character stereotypes

Archetype comes from the ancient Greek and refers to the idea that similar people objects or concepts are derived, copied, modeled or emulated. According to Jung, archetypes represent fundamental human motifs of experience and evoke deep emotions. These archetypes symbolize the basic human motivation of the character. Each archetype has his or her set of values, meanings and personality traits. There are three different cardinal sets of archetypes ego, soul, and self.  Within each of these sets are four different archetypes. Although there are many different archetypes, Jung defined twelve primary types that symbolize basic human motivations. Each type has its own set of values.  The four Ego types are the innocent, the regular guy (or orphan), the hero and the caregiver. The Soul archetypes include the explorer, the rebel, the lover, and the creator, and the  self archetypes  are the jester, the sage, the magician, and the ruler.

By identifying each character’s archetype, you understand can better understand how what “makes the character tick” and make certain that the character emulates the cliché “to thine own self be true”.

signs of the zodiac

Zodiac Sign

Another way of judging a character’s motivation is to look at his or her sign in the Zodiac. Whether you believe in this or not, doesn’t matter, but these signs are similar to the archetypes mentioned above. My character–Robert McCray–was born on July 4, 1776 in Philadelphia. His sign is Cancer.

Cancer, the fourth sign of the zodiac, is all about home. Those born under this sign are ‘roots’ kinds of people, and take great pleasure in the comforts of home and family. Cancers are maternal, domestic and love to nurture others. More than likely, their family will be large, too — the more, the merrier! Cancers will certainly be merry if their home life is serene and harmonious. Traditions are upheld with great zest in a Cancer’s household, since these folks prize family history and love communal activities. They also tend to be patriotic, waving the flag whenever possible. A Cancer’s good memory is the basis for stories told around the dinner table, and don’t be surprised if these folks get emotional about things. Those born under this sign wear their heart on their sleeve, which is just fine by them.

This would explain why in my future novel—The Anvil—Robert opts to join his family on the frontier and doesn’t understand why the girl he wants to marry is completely against the idea.

If you prefer, use the Chinese Zodiac for your guide instead.

Your Character’s Gender and Sexual Orientation

A productive Writer has to find a balance between focus and diversity in order to be as productive as possible.

Each character has a biological gender and identifies with a specific gender role. The role may or may not be the same. In my novels they are the same, but what if they weren’t? How would a transgender person be different than a biologically born male or female? How would they be the same? If this is an issue in your writing, what are the unique nuances of these characters?

Did you know that a transgender person is not necessarily the same as a person who chooses sexual orientation of a person who gay or lesbian. A transgendered female or male may be sexually oriented to individuals who can be either male or female. This whole issue is as complicated as any and you have to understand the nuances of an individual’s gender and sexual orientation if you are going to make these type character believable or not.

In traditional male and female roles, nuances also exist. It is important to understand the usual stereotype of these traditional roles. How do men traditionally think differently than women? How do women react to specific situations compared to men? If you are an author writing about the opposite sex, it is important to think like that person of the other sex. This is especially important when you are writing from the view of that character.

How Being Rich or Poor Affects Character Motivation

I was just reading the other day that people who are rich have difficulty relating to the life of poor people and vice versa. They don’t eat at the same places. They don’t have the same concerns. For instance, a poor artist may think that money will buy them happiness, whereas a rich person might feel trapped in the family business and be wishing for the freedom to explore his artistic talents.

Your Character’s Birth Order and Motivation

Do you know that the fact that whether your character was a first born child, a middle child, a youngest child, or an only child makes a difference on how he or she reacts to the world around them? I have had this discussion with several people lately. I am an eldest child. I am the eldest of six. By the time I was three and a half years old I had three younger siblings. Not only that, but both of my parents were youngest children. From as far back as I can remember (and I remember way back), I remember that I felt responsible for my brothers and sister. It wasn’t because I was forced into that role, but because it was because of who I was. To this day my siblings still come to me for advice and guidance.

Handicaps-Physical, Mental, or Emotional

Not only were my parents youngest children, but they also both had handicaps. Dad had polio when he was in his teens leaving him with a severe limp and my mother had whooping cough when she was seven leaving her deaf. Any hearing ability she has is thanks to an extremely powerful hearing aid. Not only did this add to their being coddled by their parents, but also gave them both strong opinions on vaccinations. It also affected the way other people looked at them. Handicaps can either make or break us.

Not only physical handicaps, but emotional and mental handicaps do affect a character’s motivation. It doesn’t matter whether the disability is their own or the disability of someone close to them. As one of their children, I often felt self-conscious because of my parent’s disabilities.  When I think of disabilities, I am reminded of the movie Forest Gump. Forest had mental and physical disabilities as a child that he overcame with his mother’s help.  Jennie also had a disability. She was abused as a child, so she fell into abusive relationships until she finally accepted Forest’s genuine love for her and their son.

Understanding Motivation is Psychology

Yes, understanding motivation has a lot to do with understanding the psychology of a character.  The more you as the writer understand your character’s mission, his archetype, zodiac sign, gender, birth order, or handicap, the better the reader will understand and identify with the character. The deeper you get into your character’s psychological makeup, the more realistic he or she becomes. So put your character on the couch and learn what makes your character tick. Your reader will thank you for it.

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .


How do you utilize otherwise unused garden space?

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .


me_on_the_laptop

Last week we talked about branding by looking at my goals and who I am. This week, we will be looking at my fiction series  and how these books relate to me, my goals, and it  brings my brand together to reflect the ideals of my vision and my mission statement.

Consistent Genre

One of the first things I  needed to understand about your product when developing a brand concerns what genre my  books are in. People associate writers with specific genres. For instance, what genre do you associate the name “Stephen King?” What genre would you associate with John Gresham? What genre would you associate with Lawrence Block or John Steinbeck? Imagine that these people came out with fiction that was outside their genre. How would you feel? Confused? Maybe even betrayer or cheated? These individuals have developed a brand based on the type of book that they right. We call it genre, but it is basically the same concept as “brand”.

Not that we have to use the same formula for every book. None of the writers mentioned above  have what could be called  formula fiction. My fiction series, The Locket Saga is all historical Christian, Romance. every book in the series has these aspects, however, each book has other aspects as well. When God Turned His Head and my upcoming book In the Shadow of the Millpond are mysteries, Soldiers Don’t Cry and my soon to be released Sailing Under the Black Flag are action adventure. A Coward’s Solace as well as another future book The Anvil are primarily straight Historical Christian Romance.  What holds all the books together is the family connection as well as the locket that is passed from one bride to the next.

Reflects Author Mission Statement

Last year I wrote out my business plan and wrote this as my mission statement:

“The mission of Cygnet of the Ozarks Publishing is to write, publish, and market books that encourage, inspire, educate, and enlighten. “The Books Folks ‘Swan’ to read.”

Every one of my books in the Locket Saga reflects this statement even though what I write is fiction. I have written every book to reflect this statement. I write every one of these novels to be entertaining, but I also wrote them to encourage others, to educate individuals concerning historical figures or events that they might not otherwise know. There is also an inspirational aspect in every one of the books of the Locket Saga. I try to build into each book a spiritual component that is not preachy and allows the reader to draw his or her own conclusions.

 

Reflects My Vision as a Self-Publisher

Cygnet of the Ozarks Publishing is destined to be the most sought after publishing enterprise through its uniquely created books that inspire, educate and enlighten. Books from this company are marketed in such a way that it benefits writer and reader alike. I have self-published my books because I wanted to get my books out more quickly than I might have been able to do through a traditional publisher. Although I have not yet fully realized this vision, I continue to see growth in my writing platform for this book series. Every day, more and more people are becoming fans of this series.

My Lifetime Goal concerning the Locket Saga

A new life goal that I have added is based on a goal that I heard that Walt Disney told. He said that  he intended to continue selling movies  so that I can continue making more movies. My goal is this

“I will continue marketing and selling books so that I can continue writing and publishing books”.

 

Equal Focus with Nonfiction Books

Just as I have gone through and compared my fiction series-The Locket Saga with my mission statement and my vision, I have also done the same with my nonfiction books. It is easier to see how these fit in with my mission statement and vision. My gardening book-Simply Vegetable Gardening as well as my other two books Help from Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard do entertain, educate, inspire and enlighten others of more natural ways of protecting pets, children, wildlife and self from toxic chemicals. I am also selling and marketing these books so that I have the means to continue to write and publish more books.  None of my gardening books promote the sale of harmful chemicals that harm the environment. Therefore, it is congruent with all that I stand for as an individual knowledgeable in this field.

 

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .


marriage supper of the lamb

In our previous post, we saw that Sabbath meant rest and we looked at a number of verses that talked about when various Christian in the Bible met. Jews traditionally maintained their Saturday Sabbath whereas the Gentile or Greek believers met on Sunday which they considered the Lord’s Day because that was the day he overcame death. If you missed this post, click here to check it out.

Today we are going to continue with this Sabbath theme and discuss what we should do on the Sabbath. (Don’t worry, it won’t be all that painful)

First, Cease from Working

Since the word Sabbath means rest, it is a day when we should rest from our everyday work. since the old testament law is a teacher and a foreshadow of what Christ has for us, we can look at when God first instructed the Jews in honoring their Sabbath. He had taken the Israelites out of Egypt and started feeling them manna. Every day they were supposed to gather their portion of manna and eat it. The only exception was the Friday before the Sabbath Day when they were told to pick up enough for that day too because there would not be any manna to pick up that day. After the Israelites settled, they were to continue the tradition of not gathering or preparing food on the Sabbath. Everyone was to rest from their labors.

What does that mean for us today? Well, if we are to continue resting from work on the Sabbath, I would think that we should also assist others in being able to rest on our Sabbath as well. As much as we are able that its. I think that we should be sensitive to those people who work in food services on our Sabbath. Granted, our Sabbath may not be their Sabbath, but I think that we need to show consideration to those who are allowing us to rest from working, cooking, and serving on our day of rest. I think that one of the worst things that we can do in our Christian walk is to mistreat those who serve us in restaurants. Both my own personal experience in the past as a cook and waitress who had to work on Sundays (my chosen Sabbath) and those I have known in food services all agree that some of the meanest spirited, demanding people who we have had to serve were people who had just come into the restaurant from a church service. And tip? I got far better tips from motorcyclist groups. Not only that, but they often treated me as though I were a heathen because I worked on Sunday. I cannot tell you how many tracts I got in leau of gratuity. When I have brought this to the attention of other Christians, I have been given the excuse that sometimes they just didn’t have the money to leave a decent tip. My response to that is that if they cannot afford to leave a tip, then perhaps they should have gone out for fast food (where no gratuity was expected)rather than to a sit down meal.

Second, Celebrate What God Has Done

The word Sabbath not only includes the concept of resting from work, but it also denotes the idea of celebration. Because God rested on the seventh day after all of his creation, the Israelites celebrated and praised God for his creation. As Christians, we too can do this. This time of year I find it especially easy to worship God through his creation. Everything is coming to life and the colors are so vivid after the drabness of winter. We have so much to be grateful for. We have been given so much. Our gratitude and praise is what God is looking for from us as we rest from toil and focus our attention on him.

In addition to worshiping God for his creation, we Christians also have Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. We also have the gift of His Spirit living  inside of us, our helper, our counselor. We can also celebrate everything that his work on the cross gave to us. In addition to salvation to an eternity with Christ, as believers, he offers us healing in spirit mind, and body..

Third, Gather Together

One of the biggest arguments that I have heard from others about why they don’t go to church is that they can worship God wherever they are. Although that is true, God is available everywhere, I cannot recall anywhere in the Old or New testament where anyone thought that worshiping alone was what they were supposed to do on a regular basis. At first, the goal was to go to the Temple in Jerusalem for as many major days as possible. when the temple was not available, Jews built synagogues in the cities where they lived. Christians throughout the Bible also gathered together even at the risk of persecution or even death, they gathered together to worship God.

We also get together to pray. As the word says, where two or more agree as touching anything,, God will do whatever they ask. That’s some pretty powerful stuff when you think about the idea that one will put a thousand to flight and two ten thousand. Imagine what prayer could do if a whole church filled with people believed what God promised!

When we cease from our labors and gather together in prayer and  to praise of God for all that he has done for us, the Sabbath becomes a day of true celebration. At least one day in seven becomes a day of celebration. Joy begins to radiate in our lives to the point that we are gracious to all those we mean, even those who serve us.

IMG_8330 final copy

 

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback 

Get a free e-book copy of Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard, when you sign up for my free newsletter

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .


I think that the most writing that I ever do regarding writing that never make it into my novels is in writing the character back stories.

Just as Pinocchio wanted to be a real boy rather than a wooden puppet, your characters also want to be real.

Just as Pinocchio wanted to be a real boy rather than a wooden puppet, your characters also want to be real.

 

If you remember from my last post, I mentioned that Pinocchio was a wooden puppet who wanted to be a real boy and that characters in stories are asking  the same courtesy.  The real story behind Pinocchio was that he gained the experience of being a boy. He developed a history that explained why it was important to tell the truth. Like a boy he learned that strangers don’t have your best interests at heart and so one. As he went through his adventures, he became fleshed out as it were. He developed a backstory which made him less wooden and more like a real boy. In the same token, our characters want to be fleshed out with backstory as well.

Happy Birthday Character!

 

I begin my character’s backstory by giving him/her a birthday. This way, as I am writing my story if I want to discover how old a character is at any specific time in the book all I just have to determine the character’s age in context  by his/her birthday. Sometimes it helps to understand the circumstances of a character’s birth. For instance, when I started writing Soldiers Don’t Cry, I worked on the character backgrounds of Rachel Mayford and her younger sister Elizabeth Thorton. Rachel was quite a bit older than Elizabeth so why was that? Rachel and Elizabeth had different fathers. Why was that? This back story  lead to the creation of Rachel and Elizabeth’s parents which lead to the creation of an earlier episode of the Locket Saga: When God Turned His Head.

What was the character’s birth like? In A Coward’s Solace, James McCray had a difficult birth. Did this affect his life long term?

Develop Unique Physical Characteristics

 

Every person is different and the more detailed you can get with the physical characteristics of each character, the more you will get to know their physical attributes. For instance, in one of my future stories in the Locket Saga, one of the boys will be mauled by a bear. In subsequent books, when he is mentioned, he will have to live with the scars of that incident both physical and emotional.

Does your character have a scar? How did he get it? Does she have a birth mark? Did the other kids make fun of it when she was growing up? Does she have a lazy eye? Does he wear glasses?

What Makes Your Character Tick?

Does your character have any unusual ticks or tags that he uses again and again? In When God Turned His Head, a minor character had a habit of smoking a pipe everywhere he went.

Reaction to Significant personal or Historical Events

 

What does your character remember about significant or historical events before the beginning of the story? How did that affect them? Personally I remember when Kennedy was shot. I was four years old and sitting in front of the television eating a bowl of cereal when it was announced.

I also remember when my brother Tom was born a year earlier. I remember that Aunt Mary was cleaning windows when we awoke that morning to learn that Mom went into the hospital “to get our brother”. I remember my brother Allen being dropped off at Uncle Carl’s and my sister Carol and I went to Aunt Mabel’s and we spent Christmas there. I remember waking up Christmas morning and seeing a brand new doll for me under Aunt Mabel’s snowy white Christmas tree. I named the doll Susannah after Susannah of the Mounties played by Shirley Temple.

Create memories like that for your characters.

Include Not so Happy Events

I remember when I was about five or six when we were at my Uncle Warner’s house and mouse was in the house. Family members were trying to scoot the mouse out of the house with a broom. My brother Allen, my cousin Randy and I all climbed up into a chair to avoid the mouse. The mouse in its terror climbed up the back of the chair. I remember seeing its fangs (real or imagined I don’t know. It’s just how I remembered it.).  Allen and I jumped out of the chair and ran to the safety of the couch. The chair went over backwards because Randy moved slower than we did. All three of us were phobic of rodents from then on.

Relationships

How does your character get along with others? Do they dislike certain people? Why? What exactly makes them dislike this person? Did your character and his/her best friend have a fight that never resolved?

In When God Turned His Head, John Adams defends Drusilla. In Soldiers Don’t Cry Peter Mayford has had a falling out with him because John defended the soldiers involved in the Boston Massacre. In Sailing Under the Black Flag, John Adams has a cameo appearance early in the book and convinces Peter to include his ships in privateering activities during the American Revolution.

Who does he like? Who doesn’t he like? Why? Why not? Is there a story behind his or her reasoning or is it simply a gut reaction this person has about this other person?

Look at each character write down everything you can discover about this person. The more you work on your character’s backstory, the more real this character will seem to you, the more like a real person that character will become. Your character’s backstory may end up being tens of pages long, but that’s okay. Of course, you won’t be putting every detail of this back story into the story line, but don’t worry about not including every detail because it will be there, between the lines.

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback 

Get a free e-book copy of Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard, when you sign up for my free newsletter

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .

 

 


All over the country people are planting their gardens. This video shows how you can avoid the three most common garden planning mistakes.

Can you Think of other mistakes? How do you prevent mistakes like this in your garden?

The Garden Planner is available from several major websites and seed suppliers:
http://www.GrowVeg.com
http://gardenplanner.motherearthnews….
http://gardenplanner.almanac.com/
and many more…

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .


Stephen King

Stephen King, Author

Who Do You Say that You Are?

Look in the mirror, what do you see? Do you see yourself an aspiring writer? A Wanna Be? I say, it’s time to stop. You are either a writer or you’re not. You might be a beginning writer,, a writer in training rather than someone who is aspiring to be a writer. a number of other published authors agree. I have read this idea from Kristen Lamb and Jeff Goins. Stop calling yourself an aspiring writer. If you write, you’re a writer. If you don’t, you’re either a non-writer or a procrastinating writer, but aspiring or wannabe? No, lets drop that idea.

But I am just starting out, you say. I can’t call myself a real writer. Real Writers. . .( you fill in the blank.) These are goals that you want to accomplish because you want to become a real writer. Whatever you answer to what a real writer is, those are goals that you have toward becoming a real writer. Rather than calling yourself a “wannabe” or an aspiring writer,  call yourself a Writer Apprentice instead. You are a writer apprentice studying under the greats. What great writing styles have you studied? Have you read Stephen King’s On Writing, A Memoir of Craft? Now read it again, take notes, learn and apply his style to yours. Do this and you will have studied under Stephen King. The other day I re-read Benjamin Franklin’s Autobiography. I studied under Benjamin Franklin. What other authors have you studied under? What authors have you studied the work of greats in your genre? Gresham? Lawrence? Don’t know who they are? Go to amazon and search under your chosen genre. Whose names are at the front page? Apprentice under those writers, learn what makes their writing great or at least popular. How good is your grammar and spelling? Do you need to study those? Include those in your apprenticeship program. Do you write every day. Do you write at least in a journal? Do you do writing prompts? Do you have works in progress? Do you at least have ideas for works in progress. Finally, do what you consider a real writer does. Fulfill what you believe a real writer does and consider yourself graduated from apprentice to real writer.

Your Brand Mirrors Your Goals

I am a real writer and I brand myself as such. Real writers write. Real writers convince others that they are real writers. Not the other way around. I am a real writer because i do what I believe real writers do. I brand myself as a real writer. I dress as I perceive a real writer and author. dresses. I have the confidence of a real writer, and most important, I have the goals that I believe a real writer and author has. I have done my apprenticeship time, I am doing what I believe a real writer like King, Gresham and Lawrence, therefore, I am a real writer and I write fantastic books. So far I have written six books, three fiction, three nonfiction. I am working on two more and brewing several more.

This is the end of the first whole week in April and the end of the first week in the second quarter of the year. I figured that now was a good time to look at my goals anyway, so it makes sense at this point to determine if who I present myself to be lines up with those goals.I found that yes, i have been very productive as a writer, but my marketing has not been what I would like it to be, yet. My problem isn’t hat I don’t think that I am a fantastic writer. No, my problem is that I have not convinced others that I am a fantastic writer.

Become Your Own Character

When writing my novels, I can’t really say that I create them as much as I discover who they are. In a sense, it is the same with branding myself as an author. I am discovering who I am and in the process creating my persona as an author.

Marketing my brand as a real author of great books begins not with the reader, but with me the writer. As stated several times, I know that I am a real writer because I do what real writers do. I writer great books. I am convinced that I am a real writer and marketing involves convincing others that I am an author of great books. How do I do that? To begin, I look like what others expect the persona of  a good author to look like. I need to have the confidence of a genuine author of great books. Developing this personas must be in line with my future goals. It’s not the fake it till you make it. Its more like convincing others about what I already know about myself. Developing my brand as an author involves looking at how I want to perceive myself and emulate who I am.

Last night I went to a meeting and at the meeting I was introduced as the President of the Oregon County Writer’s Group as well as the author of six books. I was proudly able to add that my seven book was to be published soon. That was a place where someone else recognized who I was and my accomplishments. I didn’t have to beg others to “read my book”. I was recognized for my accomplishments. I am developing my persona on a local level. I am developing my persona on the internet as well.

Branding is Focus

There are so many different avenues that I could take in my writing, but I have decided to focus on two areas. One is natural, sustainable living and the other is my fiction series: The Locket Saga. I have written numerous online articles about gardening, written two booklets about natural substances that enhance sustainable living (on the cheap, I might add). My fiction series is historical Christian romance, heavy on the history with clean romance and light Christian content. Since I am also a pastor, this plays into my focus as well. What I write under my pseudonym and under my real name are all part of who I perceive myself as an author and the message that I want to share. Anything outside of that and I would have to develop a totally different brand. Something that at this time, I am not ready to do. I prefer to be true to my beliefs.

IMG_8330 final copy

Cygnet Brown, Author

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback 

Get a free e-book copy of Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard, when you sign up for my free newsletter

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .

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