I need to get branded. Can you help?

Got your attention with that title, huh? 

Branded, deballed and injected 

At the age of 18, I spent more than an hour in line at a street fair tattoo booth in Ocean Beach, California, staring at the displays of available artwork. Eventually, I left. Not because of any aversion to tattooing, but because I simply could not decide on one particular image to represent ME.

I still don’t have a tattoo. For the same reason. And now I have a problem.

Writers are encouraged to have a brand, or a tagline, these days. A witty phrase or descriptive slogan to aid in marketing one’s body of work. (Here’s a great article by Kathy Carlton Willis about brands/taglines: Novel Journey: What’s in a Tagline ~ by PR Lady Kathy Willis)

Liberty Tattoo, University District, SeattleThere’s a lot of competition out there, and it’s hard for agents and editors and readers to know who’s who and what’s what. It’s like having an excellent logo … one that sticks with you and reminds you of the product whenever you see it … it’s crucial to your business.

Now, I realize that many (most) of you haven’t read my fiction writing, but if you’ve read my blog, you have a reasonably good idea what I’m all about. If you’ve ever written anything, you know you are helpless once the words are out. You can’t even find your own typos, much less identify your “call sign” as a writer!

I’m having a terrible time putting my finger on what separates me from the rest of the herd. I can’t seem to pinpoint any identifiable markings, so to speak. If you had twelve brown horses, you’d look for stars and blazes and socks and stockings to set them apart. In the same way a horse can’t see the star between its eyes, I can’t see what characteristics in my writing set me apart. I hope that’s because I’m looking from the inside out. From in here, everything looks pretty random and jumbled! Imagine trying to describe yourself if you’d never looked in mirror. Or explaining the location of your house if you’d never left it. That’s what this feels like.

I’m asking for your help … words, ideas, impressions. As a reader, a friend, a family member, or a fellow blogger/writer, what comes to mind when you think of my writing?

Brading Old Town Hall stocks

This is the equivalent of sticking my head in the stocks and asking you to stick labels on me. Yes, it’s a bit scary, but I’ve run smack into a wall with my own ideas beyond the one I can’t just give myself: “New York Times bestselling author.”

Impressions? Thoughts? Suggestions? Ideas?

8 thoughts on “I need to get branded. Can you help?

  1. Unknown says:

    Dirty feet. Maybe that's not what you want other people to think when they think of you. Like I said when I introduced you at MOPS, your Christianity is full of powerful conviction, but will practical application – feet firmly planted on earth.
    I just got my nose repierced today (I just got back in fact). It's my 33rd birthday gift to myself. On my drive home I found myself feeling suddenly like myself. Like the part of me someone else tried to disqualify or diminish is back and ready to strut her stuff. So, maybe I got branded today – made my own mark (okay, well it's a mark everyone is making these days, but I did it first 10 years ago when it was still a little taboo – especially for a Christian.) I guess my question for you is what makes you feel that way?

  2. Karla Akins says:

    What kind of fiction do you write? E-mail me and we'll work on this together! 🙂 LOVE your theme on this blog, btw!

  3. Debra E. Marvin says:

    Tough question Niki. Do you want your brand to speak of you or of your fiction? Are they the same?

    I don't think that works for me but maybe I need to read more of your stuff to know if it works for you.

    I feel your pain.

  4. Niki Turner says:

    Rachel, does that mean when I change it up again you won't recognize me? I'm as bad about redoing my blog as I am about moving my furniture!

    Good question, too… and one I'm pondering because I have no quick, easy answers!

  5. Niki Turner says:

    I'm laughing and laughing… if I can figure out a way to put dirty feet in my brand, I will! Thank you, though, you confirmed something several people have said.
    Can't wait to see your nose! I always thought your pierced looked so cute on you.

  6. Niki Turner says:

    Karla, bless you! I will do that. I'm compiling a list, and some things are starting to congeal a wee bit!

  7. Niki Turner says:

    Debra, I love your new tagline!
    I don't think I'm at all prepared to come up with different brands for my blogging, non-fiction, AND fiction work, so it's gonna have to cover all of me. I have enough tendencies toward multiple personalities I don't need to add to them! : )

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