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Abbigayle Grace's books on Goodreads
Elfboy Elfboy (The Pizza Shop Chronicles #1)
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    Author Branding – How Will You Stand Out?

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    There’s no denying that when we hear the name Tolkien, we think of Middle Earth. C.S. Lewis means Narnia; J.K. Rowling means Harry Potter; Stephen King means horror; Agatha Christie means murder mysteries.

    What do you want readers to think when they hear your name? What connotations will you carry to your grave? These may seem like daunting questions – especially in today’s society when writers seem to be coming out of the woodworks and the markets may seem overrun with best-sellers. The very idea of having any one thing, let alone a few, associated with your name may seem unrealistic, delusional even. It doesn’t seem possible at times, that you could ever stand out among your peers.

    But it is possible. And highly probable if you stick by your guns!

    I was (and still am) a member of a writing site for teens – writetheworld.com, which is similar to Wattpad. It was there that I had my very first social media experience two years ago when I joined. I learned a great deal about social media marketing, constructive criticism, interacting with readers (also other writers), and author branding. My writing also improved, but not as an important takeaway.

    I learned after a short time there that those in the community began associating certain things with me and my work. They became expected and gained me titles that I still love:

    • The Cliffhanger Queen – which shows how they expected fast-paced, tense action that left the characters in danger on every turn.
    • Stoneheart – which comes from the tragic emotions I often evoke through the deaths of my characters.
    • Quille – my username, which you can read the origin of here and is associated with my habit of making up names/words with unique spellings.
    • Elfwriter – which is also the title of a novella I wrote and speaks of my tendency towards mixing fantasy and modernization. Also of my love for elves.
    • Addictive – this isn’t a title I hold personally, but it is a word that has been used many times to describe my writing.

    Those are examples of the brand I have built with my writing. Other things that might be thought of with me are the support I have offered the community during my time there through reading, editing, and reviewing the works of others; my “sunshiny” personality, and the Christian values I have often written into my stories & poems.

    And how does any of this help you create an author brand? I guess it seems like I’m bragging, huh? Well, having self-confidence is also part of my brand.

    This is a summary of my work over two years, and I’m still building on it today.

    Recently, I designed a new logo for myself, the inkwell silhouette, which brings into play a number of symbols that are constantly in my life. The feather is a quill, or Quille. The tree of life on the inkwell is my favorite symbol, which I wear on a pendant everyday. The heart is on my charm bracelet, as well as my favorite Scottish swords (nose-breakers, or basket hilts) and I am of Scottish descent. Being a silhouette, the logo is reminiscent of Elfboy’s book cover, is it not?

    Yes, I put that much thought into my logo. Because it is a picture of Quille’s Inkewell, which represents me also.

    It’s my suggestion that you treat yourself as you would one of your book protagonists (no, I don’t mean going off and possibly getting killed trying to take down an evil villain, but you can do that too if you want).

    Perhaps here are some things to think about (you’ll probably want to expand with your own questions too):

    1. What three colors would you use to describe your personality?
    2. What do you truly believe, above all other things?
    3. What purpose do you envision for yourself?
    4. What are you? What do you want to become?
    5. Can you describe your clothing style in three words? How about your writing style?
    6. What nicknames or titles do you want? (start using them now)
    7. What do you want to avoid being associated with at all costs?
    8. What song describes you?

    The possibilities are, naturally, quite endless. And it takes time – and consistency – to successfully build anything – I’m still an amateur myself; heck, I’m only a teen still.

    But I do know what I’m talking about to some degree. I know that the most successful people are those with dreams they’ve never given up on – this is exampled by all the many famous people urging others to “follow your dreams”. And I know that it’s hard work to chase your dreams – exhausting sometimes. But anything worthwhile having is worth fighting for, including a reputation, so stick to your guns (or swords)!

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