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April Challenge

Get Comfortable Recording Yourself

Some of us still have the romantic image of the cloistered writer tucked cozily away in their oaky study, a globe and antique bookends on their desk next to a personal library of leatherbound books.  They live in relative seclusion, all their focus dedicated to the words on the page and the click-clack of their typewriter.  It is a quiet life, but one suited to their quiet personality.

In today’s day and age of digital town squares and communities, writers cannot afford to be as secluded.  Their audiences, especially for indie and self-published authors (although not exclusively so) demand a certain degree of access and interaction.  With social media and podcasts becoming a more viable form of marketing and promotion, it is becoming increasingly essential to have a robust and active relationship with your readers.  This does not necessarily mean posting every single day like an influencer—although there are some advantages to this to be discussed in a future challenge—it does mean developing a certain confidence and savvy behind the mic and camera.

And we can be honest with ourselves: it’s awkward to listen to our own voice or watch a video of ourselves.  We hyper-focus on little idiosyncrasies, like saying ‘um’ too often, or touching our face constantly.  And that makes it tough to want to be in front of the camera or behind the microphone.

But what happens when you gain some presence and a popular writing podcast wants to interview you?  Or what if a Youtube creator with a literary channel wants to host a virtual book club with you doing a reading from your work?  At Elegant Literature, we hope you do find that kind of audience and success, and we want to help prepare you for it!

So, this month, our challenge is to get comfortable recording ourselves. Each day, we will have you record a little script and grow the audience you share that recording with. At first, it will just be yourself, but by the end of the month, we’ll challenge you to create a secret TikTok or Instagram to share your recordings with hundreds or thousands of other users.  The goal is not to go viral or promote yourself (yet!) but to gain some confidence speaking and being filmed.

Now, don’t worry: first, the only feedback we will be offering you will be encouragement.  This is not the ‘Tear it to Shreds’ of recording challenges.  We’re not stage directors, after all, we’re writers like you.  And second, we’ll be giving you the scripts to record.  You won’t have to think of something to film every day, we’re taking care of that part.  The focus is to go slow, and ease yourself into recording and posting so that you can gradually begin to build more of a presence and personality for your readers to connect with!

To keep things private and well managed, especially with the sensitivity of showing your face to the community, this challenge is only open to Premium members of Elegant Literature.

How It Works

This training is available to Premium members only. Thank you for supporting Elegant Literature and new writers around the world.

Upgrade here.