The most important thing in business is branding. The same goes for celebrities. But what many writers don't realize is: it's also true for poems, stories, and novels. It's obvious if I mention someone like Stephen King or J.K. Rowling, but it's just as true for Lord Byron and Jericho Brown.
When it comes to iconic writers in any genre, you get a picture and a feeling just from the sound of their name. You can also spot a piece of their work in an instant.
This is what it takes to really get over the top as any kind of artist. You need to create an immediate association between your name, image, and a particular niche, archetype, or signature style.
For most artists this means some degree of self-restraint and submission to audience capture. Mick Jagger at 80 years old just released a new Rolling Stones song and guess what, it sounds like the Rolling Stones sounded in the 1970's because that's what people expect and desire. The Stones and Jagger could play anything at this point, and have done so. Go listen to Super Heavy. But no-one liked Super Heavy, not as much as they liked the Stones, anyway.
So how do you do this? And if you're already doing it, how do you do it better?
The good new is, there are answers to those questions. The bad news is, they're not a simple answers. If it was easy, we'd have even more celebrities running around than we already do!
I'm going to give you the answers over the course of the next few blog posts. So stay tuned.
The place to start even if you've already published or posted and have fans and followers is: always do good work. Think of your work as food you're offering to people. If it's burned or bland, why give it to them. They're not starving. The only reason to offer your work is if you feel it's delicious, or deliciously bitter!
So, the first step in any brand is: consistent quality. Don't hurry to get your work out; focus on making it taste good. And serving it in the right place at the right time with the right atmosphere.
I'll dig in deeper on how to find out what your brand is and how to push it to the front of your creative efforts in my next post!
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