The Author’s Platform

Sam,

I think I have neglected to address to you an important piece of why I want to publish my novel Project Stripes. It deals with the author’s platform, a hard to define term agents and publishers want to know about when being queried. What I understand: the platform is my ability to sell my book based on my presence in society and the mediums I run (website, blogs, celebrity status, etc.). Unfortunately, I lack that last one, disadvantages of being an unknown.

Whatever I lack in public exposure or publishing credentials (I have yet to be published in any medium), I believe I make up for in my Author’s Platform. You see, I’m not concerned very much about how much money I will make off my books. I understand that may seem naïve, the good heart of a young writer with no family to provide for or substantial bills to pay. I’m sure my views will shift to concerns of capital as I become an established author. Yet I give caution to any artist who seeks to create something solely for the aim of getting paid for it. We are not like other vocations. We do not dread coming to the page like we do the office. Writing, art, is not a means to an end; it’s not a chore, something we have to do in order to be rewarded for it (like money for Muggle jobs). It is self-expression and a way to analyze the world we live in. Writing connects us with those who live lives we never will, trains us to empathize and form a community of ostensibly different individuals with a like mind. I cannot tell you the number of people I have met because of stories like Harry Potter or A Song of Ice and Fire, the friendships and confidences I have garnered. All of these individuals, without exception, came from different backgrounds financially, ethnically, intellectually, but there was the Story which touched us all according to our individual needs for it. That is what I want my Author’s Platform to be: to form a community where diverse, like-minded people can find common ground and seek to expand their view of the world they live in.

A significant portion of my novel, and the main character’s pursuit to fulfilling his goals, deals with running. Now I would say a laughable majority of my friend group who do read find the activity of running (any physical activity actually) to be the literal least favorite thing they should do. Which is fine. And I would say a significant number of my friend group who enjoy exercise find reading anything they don’t already have to as something arduous. Which is fine, too.

This is where I come in.

I have written a novel about a journalist who loves to run (it’s his escape) but has lost his passion for the sport after his father dies. He travels to a monastery in Bhutan to learn how to love running again in this new life without his father. So I have an inspiring story about a sport/physical activity via the written word. This is where my Author’s Platform comes in. I hope my book(s) will encourage those who prefer to read to test the waters of exercise and vice-versa. It’s good to get off your behind and get the heart going. Perhaps people will spread wellness not only in the body but of the mind as well. A reader with a sound, healthy body seems like the ideal result of getting published over what the layman would expect. The paycheck, I would say, is so I can eat. But I’m just an unknown author. What do I know?

Cheers.

Just to prove I practice what I preach, this was me during my first Spartan Race.

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