This is part of the Claim Your Authority series.
You hear a lot of buzz about values. But what are they and how can they contribute to writing your book? I recently wrote about the deep link between your values and your themes.
In this article we’ll look at three specific ways your values can help you connect with your readers.
Consider your book a conversation leader
Recently I went to see Kodro Rinzler talk about his book, The Buddha Walks into a Bar at the Tattered Cover in Denver. I participated in a conversation he facilitated about mediation, relationships and awareness.
It reminded me that my novel Chasing Sylvia Beach isn’t just a story I want to share; it’s a vehicle for me to lead conversations about things that matter to me and my readers.
In my leadership training, my leader edge became clear: I am here to lead and engage in meaningful conversations. I do that in my coaching, in my speaking, in my writing and in my classes.
Knowing the values inherent in my book allows me to know the subjects of the conversations I am leading.
Knowing your values and themes will help you connect with readers who also share these values and resonate with your themes.
Sum it up with heart
Do you cringe when someone asks what your book is about? Every author has to develop a pithy and catchy response to this question.
It seems the pitch or elevator speech for your book can reach listeners more easily from a theme and value-based approach rather than a plot line approach. Notice the difference between these two:
It’s a book about a young woman who travels through time to Paris 1937 and has to befriend her literary heroine in order to find her way home.
It’s a book about the finding your voice in order to find your way home.
Neither of them are bad. But the values-based pitch is connecting with readers on an emotional, not intellectual level. Resonating with readers who share your values will be more satisfying for both of you.
I share the specific plot and if the person is interested in more, I broach the themes. This provides a way to connect to what’s meaningful in the book for you and for them.
Stoke your inner fire to keep going
Use your values to spur you on in your writing. Over the 13 years it has taken to write Chasing Sylvia Beach, I used my value of curiosity to drive me through the rough spots where I wanted to give up.
Curiosity helped me want to know a) what was going to happen in the story and b) what will happen when the book comes out. If I had decided to give up the book, I would not have given myself the chance to see what’s on the other side of all the time I invested.
These are just three ways to use values to connect with your readers. The more clarity you have with your values, the easier it will be to discuss your book.
How do you use your values to connect and stay connected to writing your book?