Eleanor Smith
Tuesday, 27 February 2024

Focusing on the story and the reader – Part 2

Last time we addressed the first elements of the creative process. I presented the following stages: an idea, a creative burst, stopping to reflect, reworking your text, and then giving it a break.

This time, I address how to review your work to make sure you produce the best result. I'll also get you thinking about where to publish and promote your article.

Reviewing your work

A fluffy cat sitting in a comfy chair, looking straight ahead, in front of it, a pile of books on a table and a pair of glasses. Photo by Irit Keynan on Unsplash

As I advised you last time, you'll need to let a moment pass, at least an hour and preferably a day. Now come back to your story and read it with fresh eyes. Did you find the story compelling? Did you want to keep reading?

This is the time to be self-critical if you find yourself being confused half-way in or losing the thread. Look at the questions again (see Stop and reflect in the previous article) and see if you have answered them to your satisfaction. Make some changes if necessary and read through your story again.

Once you have read the story, put it away and open a notebook. Ask yourself what the main message was. What stayed with you?

List three things that you remember from the story and one topic that you felt you wanted to learn more about after reading the story.

Now you're ready to publish and promote your article!

Publishing and promotion

A cat looking towards the viewer and off to the left with its mouth open. Photo by A S on Unsplash

It's now time to publish your article and get it out there. How exciting!

Just when you think your work is done, I'm here to remind you that it's not. Logistics are crucial for the success of your article even if you don't want to think about them. Stay with me.

Ask yourself these questions to make sure your story gets picked up by your audience:

  • Where should I publish?
  • On which channels is my audience?
  • What kind of content works well on those channels?
  • How can I make my content work there?
  • When is a good time to attract interest?

These can be hard questions to answer so if you're unsure you might want to ask a colleague or the web.

You want to make sure that you meet your goal and that your audience discovers your article. That your message is passed on and that somebody somewhere does something as a result.

After all, why else did you bother writing it in the first place?

Reaching your audience

A tabby cat looking at the viewer. In the background, a petting hand. Photo by Seele An on Unsplash

Promotion of written articles is often overlooked, believe me, I know what I'm talking about. Either people publish and then forget to promote the article altogether.

Or they leave the promotion to somebody else and take the risk that their article doesn't reach the desired audience. They risk that no-one reads their story or takes any action as a result.

Even if you can delegate this part of the project, it's worth having an understanding of marketing. After all, you've put a lot of work into your article so it would be a shame if nobody hears about it.

Why all this is important

Well done for making it this far!

I hope these two blog posts have helped you to look at writing in a new way. That they have given you some structure or helped you to make a plan.

Doing this exercise will put you in the reader’s shoes and help you to review your work critically. This will help you reach your goals and make sure that the right people read your article. Even better they take something away from it and if it makes a positive change for them.

And don’t forget to be kind with yourself during the creative process. Good storytelling takes work and time.

If you don’t have time or want help, you can get in touch with us. Drop us a line at syper@syper.eu.

A black cat reaching out to a person's hand. Photo by Humberto Arellano on Unsplash

Read part 1 of this series.