Showing Your Work

Hi, writers! One of the things I’m trying to figure out is how to show my work effectively online. Because sometimes, opportunities arise out of the blue because you do that. Listen to this episode of the fabulous All the Wonders podcast if you don’t believe me. Nepal to New York to have coffee with an editor who saw your work somewhere and loved it? I’d do it, too!

Of course, it’s easier for visual artists than for writers to be seen this way, but it happens for authors, too. I know several children’s/ya authors who had at least one book contract come about because of an ongoing project they shared online. In fact, Lisa and I talk about that some in Getting Published. I love Austin Kleon’s Show Your Work, and I’m really wrestling with how to share tidbits of my work in some fun and consistent way so that there’s a body of work out there that’s discoverable. I share tons of poems, and I often make them imagepoems so that they can be sort of eye-catching, too. But I’d like to share other writing that showcases my approach to life, my writing voice, and any skills that translate to picture books (not just poetry ones, but narrative ones, too).

This writing would need to be:

  • super-short
  • shared in a visual format (even if it’s just a solid colored background)
  • housed together (for like things, I mean, like my Wonderbreak poems being on a Pinterest board)
  • fresh and different
  • appealing to the age I most want to write for

I’ve been trying to crack this nut for a long time, and I still haven’t gotten there. One big problem is that you want to showcase good work, of course! But if you share it, then it’s published. So I’m trying to think of little pieces I might do that are not the actual narrative but that are related to it? Or around the same topic? Or are tiny snippets that are arresting but don’t give away too much? It’s tough!

Have any of you guys thought about this? Where do you share your work online? WHAT do you share online? Would love to hear any thoughts to jump-start my brain. I’ve literally wanted to do this for YEARS and have not come up with any kind of cohesive plan. Help! (Thank you:>)

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About Laura Purdie Salas

children's writer, poet, reader, visiting author, speaker/teacher, mentor, copyeditor, freelance writer
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2 Responses to Showing Your Work

  1. Angie says:

    Wow, this is a hard one. I always worry about the same things, but also about others taking my ideas – names, settings, characters, conflict, topics, and so on. How about on your web site? Pinterest is great, especially if you connect with others who search for the same thing (or share the same thing). I’m thinking of your Wonderbreak poems. They look so nice and would be pinned fairly regularly! I’ve been enjoying Instagram, but I don’t put writing on there…There is another place people post writing pieces…maybe you were the one that mentioned it. Seems popular with the younger (than me) crowd. And I cannot think of the name. That’s a big help, isn’t it? If I run across it, I will let you know. Hope you figure out something wonderful!

    • Hehe–for me, it’s not SO much about where to show it, but about what to show. I did put my Wonderbreak poems on a Pinterest board as I did them, and I sometimes do that with other collections of related poems. But, yeah, trying to share anything in progress that you hope to actually sell…whole different matter for writers than for artists of physical things:>(

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