The idea of branding, to me, involves a hot iron and the smell of burning flesh.
I mean, that is what they do to cows, right? We brand them.
As an author in today's market, we are supposed to be our own brand. We are supposed to have a solid brand (not crossover too much into any other markets...would muddy the brand) and it should be reflected across the board (website, fb, blog, books).
My brand is muddy as hell and you guys seem to like it. For instance, on this blog, I might talk, on any given day, about life, my kids, writing, sex, love or even drunken elk.
My books range from YA to FF to MF to MMF...depending on what the muse has decided we are writing about today, not an attempt to build my brand. None of my sites 'match' and I really don't put a lot of thought into what the public wants. I talk about what I am thinking about.
Nathan Bransford, former literary agent and present author, (yes, I do read his blog rather religiously...it is an awesome blog), wrote a blog on branding (see it here.)
He suggests, in his blog, that on the internet, there is no brand. There is us.
I really like that idea. I did still finally break down and buy some business cards today. It did still feel weird (promoting me always feels a little weird. It is this strange cross between too personal--I am, after all, selling my thoughts--and somewhat arrogant. But...well, I feel silly every time there is this moment when I am supposed to casually palm off a card to give my info and instead scratch it down on a receipt dug out of the bowels of my purse.) but it was time.
What is your brand? Do you have one? I still don't fit neatly into a box but maybe that IS my brand. I am like everyone else...I have lots of layers, like an onion, and depending on the day, my layer might match yours. You might be able to identify with my kid struggles even if you don't identify with my sexy, smutty books. Maybe you have a kid with autism, too, so that is why you read my blog. Whatever the reason, I guess the point of this blog is...don't expect me to change. I probably won't ever change. Like your real-life friends, at some point I will probably disappoint you. At others, you can cheer with me when things go great.
But it is all real, baby. No silicone here.
Off to write more sexy books for ya.