You are not a brand. You are a human being. Writing is your craft. Story is your art. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: who wants to read a story by a brand? (“Ah, the erotic culinary autobiography of the Burger King. Finally, it is mine.”) Your voice is what matters. Your ideas are what mark you. Your milkshake is what brings all the boys to the yard. You know what a brand is? A brand is the thing they use to mark a cow so that it gets identified with the rest of the mooing herd.
Chuck Wendig serves up his list of New Year’s resolutions for writers. There are a lot of gems his post, but this particular piece stands out. He’s referring to more than just your online persona, but even improving that would be a huge start for most. I’d love for all of us, writer or no, to stop thinking about how best to market ourselves, and more about being authentic people. That’s where art, humanity, and community come from, and in an age where everyone uses the internet to express outrage, scorn, and schadenfreude, I think it’s sorely needed.