♦Welcome to another edition of the Open Book Blog Hop!♦
What is a side skill that has been useful in your life? Where did you learn it?
Have you written it into any of your stories?
Welcome back to another Open Book Blog Hop! The authors included in this ongoing series wish to thank you for your reads. We appreciate, even more so, when you share our writings with your friends. If you’re new to the series, welcome aboard. The authors engage and impress weekly. Prepare to become a regular reader.
Side skills are an important facet of being a writer. As much as I wish, and many other authors wish, we cannot get by by writing alone. The times have changed a great deal and we need to be able to meet the expectations of our role in the times that we live. That’s been a learning a curve! For one, I’m not a marketer or copywriter. I wish that I did have those skills like individuals who work for the top ad agencies. I’d be all set!
One thing that I do have, and I am quite grateful for this, is my ability to work in the visual arts. I have a unique drawing style and can even paint. Visual art is something I’ve engaged my entire life, longer than writing, and I am not half bad at it. My former art teacher in my junior high school even had me make a poster for the art room door. She was thrilled!
After college, the digital age allowed me to pursue photography as I had always dreamed. Prior to that, it was simply too expensive to be a reality. For the last several years, I’ve enjoyed using my phone to see if I can get the same quality shots. It’s simple and available, and I enjoy the challenge. Without the perfect lighting, it’s not possible. You have to know lighting. I hope to get a light pack soon, so I can work on lighting indoor projects better. That’s a whole other trick. The ring light I have for my vlogs is the first step toward that goal.
While I learned photography in my twenties, I also learned the art of using software to retouch photos and it’s usefulness in making digital paintings and collages. That Photoshop is a great skill to have as an author quickly became apparent. Being able to use it, or any software of the kind, is a bonus for creating copy aligned to your work. As you know, the public loves great images, and those great images draw them in to learn more. That’s why a great cover matters so much. (Although, I highly advise against creating your own covers unless you’re a highly skilled and trained graphic artist.)
Working with video and still images has been a lot of fun and rewarding for my platform. I went to school to become a screenwriter, and being able to take the visual medium to the next level wouldn’t be possible without that background. Very few people have that innate ability. It really does take understanding setting and story in the visual world to get it right. Everything is language and tells a piece of the story, right down to transitions and angles.
It’s because of this that I’m super grateful to those who always supported my artistic pursuits. Without their words of encouragement, I may never have gone further with any of my art. Today, I’m sitting here a writer because not only did I enjoy reading as a child, but because people let me know it was possible. They told me my art was worth pursuit. Obviously, I showed promise. These early supporters saw me.
If there are any writers out there reading this, just know that, even if you can’t do visual art, you can find folks who can. Your actual side skills don’t have to be in that realm. Maybe you’re a great editor, making it really easy to write well. It’s possible that you understand visual storytelling, giving you a side hustle like film (book trailers). Another possibility is that you’re so friendly that people love helping you, and you’re able to help them in return, thus easing burdens and clearing paths.
Whatever your skills, you should pursue them. Although achievement of some goals seems insurmountable, they’re worth your time. Also note: don’t discount whatever you’re good at. Unquestionably, the ways in which those skills help you along your journey are surprising! Don’t believe for a second that you’re a one trick pony. No one is! I see you!
I guess, another skill that I have is not listening to negative voices telling me I can’t do something. If there’s something I want to do, for the most part, I go after it. Sometimes, you might flounder thinking of how to get there, but in the end, the path becomes clear, and you rise to the goal. Clearly, that’s a skill to treasure!
Don’t go yet! Hop through the blogs by clicking on the author links below. I wonder what other amazing skills we’ll find…