Thanks Kristen (from a WANA Wannabe)

Hello World…

I’m a writer who has only recently removed the word ‘aspiring’ from my bio, even though I don’t – yet – have a published work to my name.

It feels…SUBLIME…ly scary…

There are only two people in the world crazy enough to encourage me to do such a thing – so this first blog is for them.

Meet Kristen Lamb

Kristen came across my path about three weeks ago, when I was trying to figure out a self-publishing strategy that didn’t include social media.

Her Freshly Pressed blog, ‘Stress Less, Write More’, jumped out at me.  Within minutes, instead of breaking into a cold sweat, I was laughing and telling the Person sitting next to me what a ffflipping fabulous article I just read.

So I subscribed and went back to what I was doing.

Meet She-who-can’t-be-named

Unlike me, the Person sitting next to me has always taken my writing career seriously.

Not only did she read Kristen Lamb’s Blog, but she also clicked on the link to her best-selling book, Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer.

“…OMG…you have to buy this book immediately.”

Suddenly, between fits, She was reading aloud how, “…‘Most of us would rather have brain surgery with a KFC spork than learn about computers and social marketing’ – OMG, that’s just like you!” She laughed, “You have to buy this book immediately!”

So She bought the book and downloaded it to my Kindle, proving Kristen’s premise to be right (that I am not Alone).

Thanks to Her, I read We Are Not Alone and then Are You There, Blog?.  What a revelation…

Kristen’s advice to writers is more than just ‘how to’.  She explains the principles of writing, and of social media, in such a way that it becomes a life lesson.  A lesson in LOVE and the rules of FRIENDSHIP, so much so that, suddenly, Twitter and Facebook have meaning far beyond a status update on the colour of my navel dirt.

I’m SO relieved.

The last three weeks have turned me into a convert.  Kristen has even managed to convince me that I can do this thing called social media.  At least, now, I’m willing to give it a go.

If she can convince me, she can convince anyone.  I mean – seriously.

Since I read Kristen’s books, I’ve been doing somersaults trying to write my first blog.

The process is similar to figuring out what to say to the hairdresser for two long hours – the internal dialogue goes something like this:

Quick.  Talk about the weather – that’s always a good place to start – No, too lame – everyone knows that’s an act of desperation…..Think!  Talk about Whitney’s drug overdose – No, no entry point, it’ll look weird….There you go – she asked you what you’re doing on the weekend – But I don’t have any plans!  I mean, aside from cooking food for my demented dog. No-one wants to know about that….  There’s your writing – you’re setting up your platform this weekend – I’m not telling her I don’t have a Facebook account – she probably grew up on Facebook!  Too late.  Moment’s lost.  Just – keep quiet….Goddammit….

Time to take a deep breath.

Thankfully, yesterday morning, I opened my email and saw Kristen’s new blog – ‘The Age of the Artist – Time for a Revolution’.

It’s amazing how, with just a few words, Kristen can make me laugh and cry all at once.  The way she pares everything back to the bigger picture and gives us hope.

It’s not about me.  It’s about Sharing the Love.  That’s, anyway, why most of us are here, right?  Or isn’t it?

In the spirit of sharing it around, I’d love to know – what inspires you to write, and why?  More importantly, is there anyone in your life who encourages you to keep at it, when no-one else could care?

I want to meet you, and to give a plug to our supporters.  In many ways, their task is harder than our own…..

Much love,

Alarna Rose Gray


  1. lynnkelleyauthor says

    Alarna, I love this shout out for Kristen. I feel exactly the same way about her and all her guidance. She’s like a life coach in addition to helping with writing advice and social media. Welcome to the blogosphere. You’re going to do great. I recommend taking Kristen’s blogging class in June. It helped me so much. I hope you’ll join the new WANA site Kristen just created, too. It’s a lot of fun and there are lots of helpful writers willing to share their valuable knowledge when we’re dealing with a problem, whether a technical issue with FB or twitter or Blogger or Word Press or something else. Nice to meet you!

    Oh, I signed up to follow by email and signed up to follow you on Twitter. Hey, I still haven’t figured out how to add the follow me button for Twitter on my blog yet! You’re off to a great start!

    • says

      Lynn, thank you so much, I’m really touched by your words. I will check out the WANA site – I have been ‘hanging around’ on #MyWANA and still a bit nervous about diving in. But I’ll definitely consider the class. By the way, I tried to figure out how you could link Twitter and your blog to your Gravatar – but then realised you’re a different blogging platform to me, so I’m equally unsure. Anyone else out there able to help? Will go link in with you right now, anyway, and thanks so much for signing up!

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