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YA Author Branding

I've never had a problem knowing who I am, but how to get my work out there is a different story. That's why I'm taking this class. 

I have finally been able to make the leap to my dream job, a full-time writer. 

My strength as a writer is my characters. I'm fascinated by people, their interactions, and their motivations. I also love writing dialogue to drive the plot and paint a picture of the characters. My preferred genre is YA fiction, because the teen years are a vibrant and dramatic time of self-discovery, which makes it the perfect backdrop for a story.  

My strength as a brand is that I'm approachable, friendly, and relatable. I'm a young woman, which makes me appealing to the YA audience since I'm not much older than they are. I'm also well-versed in the teen culture -- their likes, dislikes, slang, and entertainment choices. I have become much more active on social media lately as well, which has helped me to reach more potential readers, but I still feel that there's plenty of room for improvement.

My goal is to become a successful self-published author, and to monetize my art. I've written all my life, but after a series of courses and conferences to hone my writing skills, I felt ready to unleash my novels, short stories, and novellas on the world. Luckily, Amazon KDP gave me the perfect opportunity to do that.

My first effort in December 2011 was a teen novel called Unlucky 13. I designed my own (amateur-looking) cover and edited it myself too. I didn't know much about promotion, either, so it was mostly purchased by my family and friends. But I'm glad I published the book anyway because it showed me that -- yes, I could get my work out there, but I'd need to polish it up and learn promotion skills to make some income at it. 

At that point, I was still working as a pharmacist, so I didn't really care about monetizing my art. But this year I made the big decision to retire from pharmacy and write full-time. This year, I have published three short stories on Amazon, each of which has been a bestseller in the teen short stories category. I am currently putting finishing touches on my novel, which will be released in December. I'm also in the midst of writing a series of  Amish YA novellas called the Amish Hearts series. Book 1 and Book 2 were two of the bestselling short stories I mentioned earlier. I'm planning to release Book 3 in January 2014.

In this class, I'm looking forward to learning more about social media and how it can help me to stand out above the din of the new indie authors. Very exciting! 

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