YouTube and Inkpots: what they have in common

Starting a YouTube channel can be one of the most motivating or deflating experiences in a writer’s career.

Just like writing your first couple of blog posts and waiting for things to happen, you can post your first YouTube video and then… why doesn’t anyone watch it? Your audience’s response (or lack thereof) can give you either a hot boost of creative caffeine or a cold dish of despair.

I’m more used to the latter. As a creative type, I find there will always be more things I try for than things I will succeed in. Does this sound familiar? If you’re like me, you can either let these inevitable let-downs discourage you from putting your content out there again, or… you can step back, regroup, and do the homework necessary to make progress. The wind isn’t always going to be with us—which is why we should always be pulling the oars.

I say this as someone who has just now, today, this very moment, launched my first on-brand YouTube channel.

I say “on-brand” because there exists, somewhere in the nebulous world of YouTube, a channel that holds videos of me singing and doing other random things like falling into bathtubs while trying to kill spiders (yes, this one actually made America’s Funniest Videos). This is not the channel that I recommend anyone look up. Nope. Don’t do it.

Why did I do this? (Start the on-brand channel, not fall into bathtubs.)

I took The Inquisitive Inkpot to YouTube because I realized that, in order to be an effective resource for other writers and readers, I needed to be where my audience is.

There are writers who, like me, benefit every time an author shares his or her “inside story.” I don’t mean the story of “my book is awesome, so please go buy it.” I mean the story of “here are some obstacles I encountered and how I overcame them,” or the story of “here’s a trick I learned that made my creative process more efficient.” Or even the story of “don’t accept paid reviews from everyone who offers you them.”

I also realized there are parents who want something they can put in front of their kids to entertain them for a few minutes. Why not make read-alouds of my children’s books available to them? I mean, better that than some of the other stuff kids get into on the internet.

And then, of course, there will be some sneak peeks at upcoming projects and an inside look into some of the background details of each story. My hope is that, whether you are a reader, writer, or both, you will glean something useful and enjoyable for your own road ahead.

With that, I invite you to check out this 8 minute video I put together about the most important lesson I learned about writing children’s books. No, this is not a 10 minute long introductory video telling you why I started this channel, my favorite color, and my pet’s middle name. That’s the point of this article. Well, I didn’t answer those last two, but if curious minds must know, feel free to ask.

In the meantime, thanks for reading, and I’d love to hear your thoughts on the video!

Have you ever tried something new and then pulled back because the results weren’t what you’d hoped?

What are some of your ideas that have been brewing for a while in the back of your mind?

Do you have your own YouTube channel? If so, please share in the comments below!

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