on August 6, 2016 by in Golden News, Comments Off on Building a (personal) political platform

Building a (personal) political platform

As an author, I’m supposed to have a “platform.” That is, I’m supposed to have a website, a blog or two, and a social media base that numbers in the tens of thousands – if not the hundreds of thousands – of followers. Authors build their platforms for multiple reasons, such as to demonstrate to publishers that we could, in fact, deliver fans who would buy our books. Another reason is to promote and sell work we’ve already had published.

I do not have said platform. I had a website that once said “Something cool is coming soon” for so many years that I finally hid it. My LinkedIn profile pretty much takes its place. And the books I’ve authored are mostly out of print, but you (or I) could pay big bucks for them on Amazon. I rarely look at Facebook these days, and, as of today, I was seven people short of 2,000 followers on Twitter. But I’m going to get serious about my platform soon. Really.

Another type of platform has all my attention at the moment, though. After two weeks of following political conventions and sifting through party platforms, I’ve decided that I need to articulate my own personal political platform, what I believe would keep our nation moving forward. (Note: It’s already – and still – great.)

Here goes:

• Don’t run with scissors. Even though I once considered such behavior “edgy,” I now see it as unnecessary risk in a world where risk is not only sometimes necessary, but often imperative. Sure, we might hurt only ourselves, but it’s likely we could take others down with us if we get tripped up. Who wants someone like that around?

• Use turn signals. Seriously, using our blinkers is just common courtesy. And more importantly, we’re signaling our intentions, providing transparency about our actions. The alternative, of course, is suddenly turning in front of someone who is trusting us to keep going ahead, causing them to slam on their brakes or possibly crash, through no fault of their own. Even worse would be signaling a turn and not making it, or going in the opposite direction. It’s a simple matter of trust, of doing what we say we’re going to do.

• Don’t talk with our mouths full. Even if we feel we must speak before we swallow – or if we’ve bitten off more than we can chew – can’t we just wait a couple of darn minutes? We’ll ease everyone’s digestion a little bit if we pause before spewing.

• Use spellcheck. (And not just in online comments, either.) Or, better yet, take the time to look stuff up. Understand what it is we’re truly attempting to communicate. We might learn whether we’re actually saying what we think we mean to say. Oh, and we might do some fact-checking along with our perfecting our sentence structures.

• Always stay humble and kind. “Don’t steal and don’t cheat and don’t lie. Hold the door. Say please. Say thank you.” (Thank you to Tim McGraw.) Yes, we’ve got mountains to climb, but it takes much longer to get there when we’re clawing over each other on the way up.

There you have it, my (personal) political platform. What’s yours?

Andrea Doray is a writer who would love it if you followed her on Twitter @andreadoray to put her over the 2,000 mark. Contact her at a.doray@andreadoray.com.

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