Gaining Credibility

Posted: July 24, 2010 in Writing, reading, writer, poetry, publishing, Liquid Imagination, you

I’m in English 110 or Composition. One thing a degree in Journalism goes along with is Marketing. I’m going to show you what I’ve learned in English as far as “gaining credibility” in an essay. It’s exactly what I’ve been doing for the past 2 years with Liquid Imagination Online (without knowing I was doing the right thing).

You have to gain credibility with your audience for any given subject. The way you do this is by quoting the advice of experts. That makes you as a writer gain credibility with your audience.

But what about your writing, your blog, or your publication?

You do this by associating with those who have contributed to your publication or blog. For example, I personally mention Dzanc Books. Dzanc Books is a MAJOR publishing house. One of their most well known imprints is “Absinthe: New European Writing.” It doesn’t matter if YOU don’t know who Dzanc Books or Absinthe is. Distributors and other major publishers do. Many literary writers know these names, too. I’ve also learned in English 110 to “target your audience.” I’ve been targeting more of a literary group for Liquid Imagination to bring credence and credibility to Liquid Imagination. We’re now listed in the appendix of Dzanc Books’ “The Best of the Web” (which you should all buy).

Now, by explaining who Dzanc Books is in as short a blurb as possible, and by citing them as listing us in their “Best of the Web,” I’ve taken the credibility of Dzanc Books and added it to Liquid Imagination.

Recently a story of mine has appeared in Pill Hill Press’ “Ruthless” anthology. The importance of that is the Introduction by Bentley Little, a Bram Stoker recipient of notable fame. I can now say that my fiction has appeared in an anthology with Bentley Little’s introduction. It gives my own writing credibility.

If you’re a publisher and you’ve had film producers/directors submit stories to you, and those writers have worked with Bill Cosby, you can mention this. This link brings the credibilty of Bill Cosby to your publication.

Whoever has associated with you. Whoever you’ve worked with. Whoever has praised your work. Whatever your internet hit numbers are. What writers have submitted to you. For example, you could mention Pushcart Nominated Poet John C. Mannone as one of the poets who contribute to you.

So, your credibility is based on who you associate with and who associates with you. It is based on who has endorsed you and whom you network with. Your credibility doesn’t depend on how many people are jealous of you, how many people don’t like you. There are thousands of well-known editors and writers who are jerks; their success doesn’t depend on how nice they are. It depends on the quality they produce and who they associate with, as well as who endorses or publishes them.

This doesn’t mean you have to begin exchanging banners with other publications or seeking blurbs. Just examine the past year. What anthologies have your fiction appeared in? Are there any famous writers in those anthologies? Whom has your publication interviewed of note? What organizations do you belong to? The HWA?

These are things to mention in your publication or blog or even within your cover letters.

I hope this helps someone.


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