<NUDGE NUDGE Have you followed 10 new people yet?>
How about a break from all that work we’ve been doing? Oh, we still have a task at hand, but it’s not at the level of the others. And it’s still imperative you complete it! This task is about uplifting others. It will feel so good!
If you haven’t been a part of the #writerslift movement on Twitter, now is your time to join the party.
Think about critique partners, for example. Find the right ones and they are worth their weight in gold, amiright? These gems of fellow writers, who you trust to read your work-in-progress, provide constructive feedback and help you improve your craft. They can act as a sounding board for ideas, catch typos and plot holes, and offer fresh perspectives on your writing. They are not only helpful, but supportive and committed. Aren’t they worthy of celebrating?
If you don’t have CPs at the moment, think about people who have helped you in any way this week or month. There are plenty of people that are helpful! Maybe their mentor texts or inspiring feeds. I mean, there are fellow authors you’ve never met that you can appreciate and connect with, by tagging them with a flattering shout-out, #writerslift post.
Today, Day 8, we are showing fellow authors some (virtual) love.
We’ll do that by giving them a shout-out across all your social media outlets using the hashtag #writerslift. This task is another example of how an automation tool is handy. You only have to post once if you use a scheduler, and it’ll go out to all your outlets at once. (Unless you did like I did and somehow managed to have three different posts go out at the same time, in the middle of the night, even though I was SURE I set them to go out over the course of 10 days. I refuse to believe user error, but I digress.)
Publicly acknowledging people not only shows gratitude, but boosts their profiles and helps to establish them as respected members of the writing community. You know they’d do it for you! In fact, they probably already have.
Make it pretty with a Canva-type app, or make it a simple text post. Your call. While of course it’s honestly the thought that counts, this is one time I suggest a regular post vs creating a graphic. Why? As you can see in the .png I created above, there is no way to tag my CPs in the image, so I have to tag them each all over again in the post–and I have to add the #writerslift tag to the post anyway. WHY DO I MAKE THINGS SO HARD FOR MYSELF lol. Just make a simple post for this.
BTW it’s here that I figured out you can post directly to social media from Canva! Sheesh, all this time on Buffer… But I’m keeping Buffer since it lets me schedule in the future, and Canva makes me upgrade in order to do that, and pay $$ monthly or annually. Even though I can stay at that one site and it makes it super easy, I’m too cheap to do it. I’ll go one at a time on this one.
Some tips for creating feel-good #writerslift shout-outs:
- Be specific: Details, baby! Mention your critique partners or friends by their full name and highlight what they’ve done to help you. Did they catch a major plot hole? Publish a PB that inspires you to be a better writer? Support you when no one else thought you could do it? Make sure to give credit where credit is due.
- Be generous: Don’t be shy. Offering praise to someone who has helped you means A LOT to them, esp if you’re not the touchy-feely type. It can help build the group’s morale and strengthen the CP relationship. Knowing it had an impact on you can help encourage them to be helpful to others again in the future. And it will warm your own heart at the same time!
- Be authentic: Don’t write a generic post just for the sake of giving a shout-out. A list of names is great, but it’s virtual lip service. Write with sincerity and share genuine appreciation. If you can’t be specific to any one piece of feedback for whatever reason, it’s okay to list each person’s handle in one post and thank them for their support over the years or months. The important thing is you are, well, lifting them up in the #writerslift.
You DON’T have to go big or go home
The kidlit industry is FULL of kind-hearted, helpful people like you. Shout-outs like this keeps that supportive feeling alive. Simply saying thanks to one person can make you both feel good!
One great example of an AMAZING week-long show of author love in May, created and run by fellow PB author @SylviaiChen. It’s a (free) weeklong co-celebratory event with prizes that is everything our Day 8 is about: uplifting and recognizing our fellow writers and illustrators! She created her own hashtags and amazingly fun Canva graphics that she posts on Twitter and Insta, and has creatively come up with Like and RT incentives. What an effective and thoughtful way to give mass shout-outs! This goes above and beyond any shout-out Tweet I would have thought up.
Don’t worry, I don’t expect level that from you! She probably worked on that for months. You can take 11 mins 🙂
Recap: Send (several) posts thanking your crit partners and anyone who has helped make you a better writer, and use the #writerslift hashtag. Be specific with the appreciation if you can, and don’t tag too many people in one post.
Share the love!
PS I am thankful for you, cheering me on and helping keep me accountable this month!