Support A Good Cause!!

Hey guys, I just wanted to give you all a reminder about UpLive. The site has been up and running strong since Sunday and has gotten a lot of positive feedback, but there are countless people out there who could use the type of inspirational messages we are trying to send. It’s going to take all of us working together to get it going strong and spread far and wide, so please make the effort. Go to the site, read the posts, share it with everyone you know. Share this post if you don’t want to do that. Just make sure that you help spread the message. There might be someone out there whose life really could be saved by the type of inspiration this site can give. It only takes a second to share, so come on guys, help us all out. In the meantime, whether you draw inspiration from it or not, I hope you will take the time to read the posts and appreciate the feeling behind them and the talent of those who have written them. If you like them, let the writers know. Feel free to comment and share. This is more for the public and those who need it than it is for us, either way. We don’t need gratification. We just want to help those who need it or could use it. Anyway, I hope you all had a great Memorial Day and a great first half of the week! The link to UpLive is below, please share and enjoy.

http://www.uplivedaily.com/

New Works, Benefits

Hey there friends and fans! What’s happening in your world this year? So far things have been going well for me. As you all already know I have started vlogging and writing a few new ideas. Those things are going pretty well, although I’m getting almost no views on my vlogs. It’s a good way to keep my head straight though. It helps me organize ideas and rant and vent. In a way I suppose the benefits are almost the same as those of writing in a diary or journal. I have put the links to the vlog in previous posts, so if you want to check it out, I welcome you to. Also, I have begun working on Wattpad in order to find myself in a new genre and gaining a new audience. I am working on a Fanfiction piece there. It’s a sequel to the film “Near Dark”, which is an absolutely fantastic movie. I feel it really deserves a sequel, so I took it upon myself to work on one that I hope will do the original storyline justice while giving it a modern touch.

In my experience so far, I feel like both of these are very good ways for authors and artists of just about any kind to work on their craft. It’s good to be able to vlog and share some things on Youtube, because there are obviously millions of viewers out there leaping for new things. It’s similar with Wattpad. It’s a good way to work on branching out and trying your hand at new types of work or putting a couple of chapters out there for people to read for free so you can see how well it is liked. This all being said, you have to be very careful with exactly what you share, of course. You don’t want to publish an entire novel on Wattpad and then try to get it published. People won’t want to pay for what they don’t have to. After all “why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?” Also, you don’t want to give to many plot ideas or any huge details of any works you may talk about in a vlog. All of that, of course, is up to you. But both are helpful. I feel that, just in the last few weeks, the use of these two things has helped me to branch out more as an author, which is what you want to do. You want to gain as much of an audience as possible, which can be very hard in a world where literature and literacy are falling deep into the recesses of technological advancement. But that’s a rant I’ve had more than once, and -spoiler alert- will certainly do again in the future. Everyone, have a great night, a great week, and I’ll post my Wattpad link below. Please read, subscribe and rate. Also, remember that anyone who gives me a review online between now and April will win a free copy of my next published work!

http://www.wattpad.com/user/DameanMathews

Networking is Key

Greetings people! It has been a while since I made an honest to goodness blog post that wasn’t just an update on myself. This one, long overdo, is going to be moderately short unless I run into a rant, which many of you know is very possible for me. I want to talk a little bit about networking, though.

Networking is incredibly important for any author, from the newcomer that was just published an hour ago to the man who has had 50 books published over 20 years. Without networking hundreds, if not thousands, of books (and authors) can go unnoticed, fall through the cracks and be left by the wayside. This is the last thing any of us want to happen to ourselves- and the last thing I want for any of you, faithful friends and fans! So what do we do to combat it? Network. Network. Network.

What is networking,some of you may ask. It is, quite simply, spreading your name and work as far and wide as you can, especially to those people whom you know are interested in your particular style or genre.Networking might sound like an easy thing to do, but believe me, that isn’t always the case. There are 7 billion some odd people in the world, and while the chances of anyone else writing your exact same piece are fairly slim, there are countless others who are writing in a genre or style comparable to yours, don’t kid yourself for a second to think otherwise. That’s not to say your work isn’t important, don’t get me wrong. Like I’ve said before; if there is a work inside you that wants out, it is for a reason and you owe it to yourself, the world and the work itself to get it out there to the best of your ability.

Networking can help with that. One way to do this, of course, is to blog about your work to others who may be interested. Another, and very important way, is social media. Social Media can be a huge help, or a huge dud for authors. There are hundreds and hundreds of pages of people trying to promote their own work, or the work of someone else (and I’m a part of a number of them for this very reason) but there are going to be people on there who will want to hear what you have to say. This is one thing that can be your saving grace. If you can find the right circle of people to market to on social media, a good portion of your networking is kind of done for you.

LinkedIn and other sites of the like are sometimes helpful, particularly if you can find other authors who are in your boat. Building relationships with other authors and readers is another way that you can be exceedingly successful. If your audience knows you on even the most superficial of personal levels, they’ll be more interested in hearing what you have to say and reading your work. One way to build this relationship and allow others in for interaction is by making a website. It gives you a way to show everything you do and allows others to comment directly to you in any way they’d like. Being a part of chats, symposiums and anything that allows authors and readers to interact can be hugely helpful. Really, anything that allows your potential audience to see the human side of you and make you more than just a name on a piece of paper. This is what is going to help.

I’m preparing to begin taking the symposium route this summer, as I have been asked to present at the Appalachian Heritage Writer’s Symposium at Southwest Virginia Community College in June. I made a post about that late last year, but as a recap I’m doing a presentation on a topic that, right now, is roughly titled; “Zombies and the Undead in Appalachian Literature”. All of the information about the symposium can be found here; https://appheritagewritersym.wordpress.com/ The site will be updated with specifics on each presenter and their workshops soon, so check back on it often. Hopefully some of you will attend, because I’d love for you all to have the experience- because I can attest to how enriching it truly is- and because I’d LOVE to meet you all.

In addition to this, I have created a vlog channel in order to attempt to let you all and fans of my other work see a bit into my life and see who I really am. The vlog channel will also include advice and talks of my works, and will see much more regular entries than this site does. That’s not because I favor it or anything, but because it’s much easier to pull out my phone and film a few minutes of me talking than it is for me to rush to a computer (or just an area with good phone signal) and pull up a website or an app and type everything out. The link to that channel is here; https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2EU_YW9qBDfFWAB01Nc6wA It’s very new, but I hope you’ll all watch and subscribe.

Anyway, I’ll cut this off for tonight. Anyone with comments, questions or any concerns is always welcome to contact me in any way possible. I look very forward to hearing from everyone! Good luck, Good year, and Happy Writing!!

New ways to broadcast yourself!

One of the most important things to any up and coming author or artist of any sort is finding an audience, reaching your audience, getting your name and work out there. However you want to phrase it, that’s the issue. In honesty, it shouldn’t be as much of an issue as it is, given today’s society and technology, etc. But that’s really where the problem comes into play. Not only are there a plethora of people in the world today, there is an untold number that want to be artists and writers and all manner of things. Unfortunately, however, there are so many ways and places one can be placed online or advertised online that it is easy for others to overlook them, and in turn overlook their own opportunity and so forth. I want to share a little bit of information that I have found somewhat helpful in the last few days especially; blogging having your work advertised on other sites makes an unequivocal difference. One of the best things to do on blog sites, actually is to network and share. Which is where I think we could all help each other here. We need to share each other’s work and blogs and everything that we can. This will help each and every one of us to reach a new network of people, and if those people are asked to do the same, soon we will be in the presence of audiences we never could have reached on our own!

Recently I have submitted my work for display on two very important and high-traffic literature sites in the hopes that it will help spread my name, and so far it’s worked fairly well. I encourage each and every one of you to do the same. Goodreads.com and Authorsden.com are great places to advertise your work.

Another thing that is immensely helpful, as I’ve said, is blogging. Ask other bloggers to share your work and your sites and give you reviews. If you have shares, reviews and a fan base, others will be attracted to your work. I really want to help everyone here, so I’m going to extend the first invitation. If any of you would like me to share your blog, a portion of your work, or even just mention your name anywhere in my own network, please let me know. All I ask is that the favor be returned. Share my blog, my website, my name, anything and everything you can in your network and we will share the links with one another so we can see how many people see it. This can seriously start a chain reaction if we treat it right and can lead to a great number of us getting in the market in a great way. One of the biggest things we absolutely have to remember is that we are indeed a team, and teamwork is sometimes exactly what it takes to move mountains.

So there is your challenge, fans. Tell me you want me to boost or promote you in my own network, and do the same for me and we will both reach a broad new fan base. In addition to promoting you, I’m going to go further and commit that anyone who shares my work and I see it or get a link for it, etc. you will receive a free copy of my next publication, just because. Here is the link to my Author’s Den profile for your own viewing and to give you all an idea of what to put in your own.
http://www.authorsden.com/visit/author.asp?id=183154

Just to refresh your memory. The ways to reach new audiences;
1) Broadcast! Talk about and share your links and work anywhere you can
2) Author’s/Artist’s profiles; there are a number of web sites that exist only to help promote the starving artist- use them!
3) Coordinate; Help each other, advertise for each other, promote each other. Become a family and work together for the better of everyone
4) Blog; Share your work on your blog, share your blog on other sites, and especially reach to bloggers (particularly professional bloggers who a lot of people listen to)
5) HAVE CONFIDENCE AND FAITH! You have to believe in yourself and your work in order for someone else to do the same. Be proud of your work, it’s who you are. If you love it, others will too. Just share it and spread it and help spread that of your peers and let them do the same for you and let the fear of inadequacy or failure or whatever it is you’re afraid of melt away.

As always, thanks for reading and comments are very welcome. Please share my work and allow me to share yours, it really can change a huge number of lives.

Influence In Life

As some of you may know, last week I had the amazing opportunity to attend the Appalachian Heritage Writers Symposium for the third year in a row. It was, again, one of the most fun, incredible and informative experiences of my life. In the last three years I have met a number of people who are incredibly happy and successful in the field that is my very dream. I am proud to call some of the highly esteemed members of the Appalachian Heritage Writers Guild very dear friends, and I am pleased to say that my own writing has drastically improved in respect of these symposiums, as has my drive to get my voice out there for the world to experience. I guess every writer feels that way at some point, but the long and short of it is that we do indeed have a story to tell, and we do have our own unique voice in which to tell it, so it makes sense that we do everything in our power to have it be heard. That may not seem important to some, but it is very important. Our voice is our life, is ourselves in essence and it deserves to be heard. Furthermore, the world deserves to hear it.  That is one of the best ways to look at it, I’ve found. We write because the words are in us, and the world deserves to hear what we have to say. Through the symposium I have heard very inspirational messages and have gained some very helpful tips, like starting this blog, for one. This year was no different. I read a story that is very much unlike anything I typically write and reveal, and the audience really seemed to enjoy it. I think that the story, which stemmed from a creative writing class taught by one of my favorite professors and most helpful mentor, Dr. Scalia, is something that I can pursue further, perhaps even turning it into a novel one day. Over the course of the last few days I have also found inspiration for number of other works, some older, one new, and I think that I will be working on them shortly. I hope to be able to place quotes and samples from these works either here, on Twitter, or on Facebook. I hope that you are all interested in these works and that you find this intriguing enough to check out my stuff that is on Amazon. As always, I welcome contact, suggestions and comments. Please feel free to get involved. This blog is intended to be interactive and helpful, after all. I want everyone to have both an insight into my life and work and to know they have someone to go to for any questions they may have about writing.