Every once in awhile, I get an email with an embedded video from Britain’s Got Talent, The Voice, American Idol or some other talent discovery program. The message accompanying these videos is always similar: “This is so uplifting. You’ve got to watch this!” Being a sucker for inspiring stories, I usually do . . . even though I know they’re designed to pull on my heart strings.
What the producers of these videos understand is that the stories leading up to a performance are almost as important as the performance itself. The hours it took to cultivate the talent being showcased, the personal struggles encountered and overcome, the long journey to get to the big show about to take place — that’s what draws viewers in, gets them hooked emotionally, and has them completely invested in the outcome of the performance.
“As an author, it’s important to realize the value of the story behind your story.”
As an author, it’s important to realize the value of the story behind your story. Many of you have created entire worlds for your books. How did you do that? Where did your creative ideas, your characters, your plot lines, your scenes come from? What was your journey as a writer? Who and what influenced you and informed your choices as an author? Readers love these stories. They’re like a director’s cut for a film. The minute you see what went into filming a single scene, your connection to the entire project is deeper and longer lasting. The story behind the story fascinates us. It’s human nature.
When you’re trying to find your audience or nurture the kind of reader loyalty that helps build a career in writing, the story behind your story can be almost as important as the story you tell in your book. Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying this is a substitute for a well written book. The quality of your book will ultimately be what makes or breaks your writing career, but the story behind the story will enrich it immeasurably.
I mentioned a few writers who do this well in another post here on Creative Flux. It was called “The Art of Book Promotion.” Author Roz Morris and her story of a reluctantly scrapped scene about a “black dress” owned by a character in her book My Memories of a Future Life, perfectly demonstrates the potency of the story behind the story. I suggest you take a look at her original post, and the reader responses it inspired. Your life as a writer is full of interesting tales. Realize the value of the story behind your story, and don’t be afraid to share it.
At the company I founded, Serendipite Studios, we think a lot about how to help authors more effectively find readers in today’s crowded book marketplace. We believe strongly that the story behind the story draws readers toward book content. In fact, we are creating a platform to make it very simple for writers to share small excerpts from their books accompanied by the stories behind them. It’s called Bublish, and it’s going to change the way writers share their stories and readers discover new authors and books.
“With Bublish, social book discovery will be a fun, relaxing and serendipitous experience.”
With Bublish, social book discovery will be a fun, relaxing and serendipitous experience. Writers will be able to send out their enriched book excerpts, called bubbles, across multiple social networks where readers will encounter and interact with them. If a reader likes a bubble, he or she can ask for more. Not only will Bublish lighten the promotional content burdens authors shoulder in our socially connected, 24/7 world, but it will enrich the social conversations between writers and readers. As we’ve already discussed, the story behind your story is a powerful tool for audience engagement.
Writers need more effective ways to find and connect with readers, and readers need a better online book discovery experience. With Bublish, help is on the way. Oh, and did we mention it’s free? We hope you’ll come learn more and sign up for a beta invite at www.serendipitestudios.com. We’re excited to help authors share the stories behind their stories. Who knows, we might even be able to help you pull a couple of heart strings along the way!
Kathy Meis has been a professional writer for more than twenty years. She founded Serendipite Studios in 2010 to empower those who create and enhance quality content. Last week, her company announced the upcoming launch of Bublish, a platform that will redefine how writers share their stories and readers discover new books. If you’d like to learn more about Bublish and sign up for a beta invite, visit www.serendipitestudios.com. You can also find out more on Twitter @BublishMe
Please join the discussion below