Guest Post: Shen Hart, Writer and Marketing Consultant
Hello one and all!
I’m Shen Hart and Chris was kind enough allow me a slot on her blog. Today I’m going to touch on what I am and what I do before diving into my passion for writing.
I’m an indie marketing consultant. I jokingly say that I’m saving the world, one indie at a time. This means that I do marketing consultations with indies (and related professions) to help them form a good marketing campaign and get their work into the hands of their readers. Marketing is something which the vast majority of indies I’ve spoken to say that they hate doing and they don’t understand. So, given that I love marketing, I stepped up to try and save them. I do charge though, a girl’s gotta eat ya know.
Now that that’s out of the way we can go into the good stuff, writing! I am a writer and I adore the written word. Semantics is a real love of mine, the way in which one single word can change the entire meaning of a sentence and how the slight switch in tone can give away so much. I’m also fascinated with body-language and as I was a dog trainer for many, many years I’m pretty well versed in it. I got a touch side-tracked there, as I was saying! Writing is this fantastic art form which I enjoy partaking in. I write both fiction and non-fiction, depending on my mood.
My fiction writing started out in a very artistic manner, not to say that it was highbrow and intellectual, not at all! Instead, I wrote scenes. Just a single paragraph which described a visual scene in intense, beautiful detail. I still return to this when I’m stressed or just really want to share something with someone. At the time, I couldn’t go any further because my ADD meant that I couldn’t focus enough to see the characters and form the plot. There were shinier things and I was off chasing them.
Over time I got my ADD under better control and one day, I sat down and wrote a novel. It was quite out of the blue but that’s a bit what I’m like! I was absolutely hooked from there on in, it was as though someone had opened a gateway to this wonderful new world which I refused to let go of. Now, I still write fiction and it is still very image heavy. I’m a very visual person, I ‘see’ the world and my mind works in this rich and vivid manner. My main genre is contemporary dark urban fantasy (try saying that quickly 5 times!) which I fell into because of my love of psychology and the darkness.
I find that urban fantasy in particular gives me the freedom to play with familiar, realistic situations and push the boundaries without going too far into horror. I do write horror shorts but I couldn’t produce a novel length piece, my interest and focus isn’t on scaring the reader. I prefer to have the reader confront the darkness, that which hides in both the shadows and the human psyche. I will be self-publishing my novels, once I have a bit more time between the marketing!
On the non-fiction side of things, I have written quite a bit on positive reinforcement. I usually apply it to dogs and horses as that’s where my years of experience lie, but I have applied it to people as well. I’m also currently writing a book on marketing for indies, which I hope will help a lot of authors out there who can’t afford consultation fees.
So all in all, I have a fascination and real love of psychology which expresses itself in a few different ways. I’m also incredibly visual, quite spontaneous, and a bit mad. I’d be an awful writer if I were sane though, right?
Thanks to Chris for having me and thank you all for taking the time to read this.