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For many months now I’ve been working on building my platform to market my brand and promote my books. Through my many friends at MIU Publishing and so many others I’ve met on-line, I’ve been encouraged to branch out, to reach beyond my comfort zone and put myself out there, exposing myself in more ways than I thought possible…no, not THAT way…grin…shame on you for thinking that. Ha.

But building a platform wasn’t exactly easy for me. I’m usually the one in the shadows, an insecure introvert. I had always been happy to focus on the little world revolving around me…my husband, my children, my job. That was enough, wasn’t it? It was hard to step beyond that. Would the rest of the world accept me? Was I worthy of having such outstanding authors and people befriending me?

Little by little, the light of platform crept into my world. I forced myself out to ‘chat’. I imposed myself to be part of the group…and I found I liked it! I found most people to be kind and gracious and supportive; like I want to be. And as I stepped beyond my comfort zone, I realized ~ the world doesn’t revolve around me! I must revolve around the world. If I don’t make a move, the world will keep spinning and pass by me. If I want something I must take that first step; to be the one to make the first gesture.

It was an ‘aha’ moment for me; not just in building my writer’s platform, but in my personal life as well. With this fact emblazoned in my mind I reached out, first to those closest to me, trying to create more solid relationships, trying to be a stronger person and friend. It wasn't about what others could do for me, it was about what I could do for others.

The hunger grew and I reached even farther. You see, I had a very special older brother who drowned when I was eighteen. He had two of the most darling daughters by his first wife and for some reason over the years we’d lost contact with them. In my small introverted cocoon, I’d been too blind to notice. I had not seen them for 20 years. I did not know how or why we lost touch. I only knew I missed them. With my new mindset I took a chance and mailed a note to their mother, apologizing for my many years of absence and asking her if I could get in touch with the (now adult) girls. I mailed the letter on Tuesday. On Thursday, I had a facebook friend request from one and by Monday I had talked with both of them on the phone. I could barely contain my happiness as we proceeded to share pictures and information of the missing times of our lives. Within a few weeks I was in for an even greater joy, the girls planned a visit to my house, their families in tow. What a fabulous reunion! Many tears were shared, hugs were abundant and talk was never-ending. All because I finally grew up, realized the world didn’t revolve around me and reached out with hope that someone would reach back. If I hadn’t jumped into life and made this move, life might have passed me by and I would have missed out on the joy these two girls and their families bring me.

So, thank you to all my family, friends and acquaintances. Life is truly what you make of it, and I hope to only make it better by building my writing and personal platforms each and every day. May you all do the same.
God Bless
C.K. Volnek