Another week of the summer has gone by and another week of my internship is complete! This week was especially fun because I was put to work and got to put to use things I had learned through writing courses the past two years.
On Monday I met with Tina Kelly for quite a few hours and worked on various things. We worked on her website, adding pictures, adding links to a news page she had, and then explaining to her how I was navigating and changing things on her website as I was doing them. We also talked about social media and having a social media presence. She told me it was hard to have a social media presence when her audience is a bit older, but she also told me it’s hard because she herself doesn’t quite understand it. I understood, but I also know that by having a voice on her social media pages that mimics the one from her book, she could have a unique media presence and also reach people who wouldn’t normally read her stuff.
After taking Writing for Digital Media I, I know how hard it is to find that voice. I mean, honestly, not just for digital media, because finding a unique voice is hard in writing in general I guess because you want to make yourself unique and noticed. But I think especially for digital media because there’s so many people online that are going to be doing similar things to you and the internet is a really daunting place (after all, everything you put on the internet stays on the internet). For the last Writing for Digital Media I project, we had to create a blog (hello yes obviously this blog is from that class) and I struggled so much in the beginning. One, because I’ve never blogged and so many people do that for their jobs so the one question I had was “why would people want to visit/read my blog in the first place if there are better ones out there?” But also for the fact that I didn’t know what made my blog unique. There are probably thousands, tens of thousands, lifestyle blogs just floating around in this internet space, so I wasn’t sure what set me apart. But, like Tina, the one thing I knew that no one else had, was my unique way of looking at the world and, more specifically, the way I wrote about it. I’m quick and witty, I swear, and overall, I write the way I talk. And I know I’m very unique compared to all the other monochromatic lifestyle blogs for that reason alone.
SO taking what I learned from that class, I know that what will set Tina apart from other author’s social media pages is her voice. Her books are lighthearted, funny, quirky, and centered around dogs. So why not do the same for her Facebook and Instagram? Why not brand herself as the author dog lady? So begins our next internship project: coming up with what type of content, captions, and dates her posts should be about/on so her social media branding really shines.
Another highlight of this week was getting to work on the plot of Tina’s upcoming novel. We discussed plot for an hour, talking through how characters would interact, how details need to be planted earlier in a chapter so they can really flourish later on, and how to set up the “big secret” of the book so when it is revealed at the end, it has the weight needed to have been kept a secret for so long and to have that emotional impact on the reader as well. I’ve never written a book, but working on this helped me see all the things I’ve learned in fiction classes and beginning writing classes that have stuck and helped. It gave me the confidence that maybe someday I could write a book as well. But not someday soon, because I have more internship work I need to do now.
The rest of this week was busy, as I also helped Judy Fogarty with social media work, website work, and book work. For the next week I have another meeting, lots of reading of social media content analysis to catch up on, and reading and editing the manuscript of Judy’s book. The biggest hurdle as of late: coming up with a title for Judy’s book. Thinking of titles for my own work is what keeps me up at night, so wish me luck.