Monthly Archives: June 2013

Finding Your Niche Part 2

What have you done to your website?

The easy answer is: I changed it. While that answer is perfectly true, it’s also perfectly useless. The underlying demand of the original question is “Why did you change it? I liked it the way it was!”

As a writer, I’m used to making changes. I do it all the time when writing. I choose one subject over another one. I re-phrase a statement. I self-edit. I often change a multi-syllabic mouthful into a one-sound word. (George Carlin’s skit graphically pointed out the differences between the sharp one-two punch of “shell-shock” and the self-conscious words of the acronym of PTSD.) I change my mind at least six times in the course of writing one article.

I write because I must. I’ve been doing all my life anyway. I was doing precisely what Jeff Goins points out in his book (“You Are a Writer, So Start Acting Like One”). I began this blog to give myself the moniker of professional writer. I write in public to push myself out of the fear zone and into being heard.

Okay, but  why did you change it?

The longer answer is that I evolved, especially in what I wanted to do as a writer.

As I got comfortable with writing, I saw that I had no focus. I have something to say. I want people to read it. I want them to take action on what they read. But, I had no focus, no specific thing that I wanted my readers to know and act on. I just had words on a page. Well-thought-out words, but simply information without focus.

In just a few short weeks, I’ve gone from the notion of writing copy to writing certain vague projects. It was a small step to get to specifics. I tapped into my core values, those ideas that I truly believe down in my soul. In retrospect, I learned that I have never strayed far from my true value, the one reason I was always so good in retail:

I like to serve people who want help.

Not need it, as in a handout, but want it, as in a hand up.

I cannot help anyone who doesn’t see the need for it. I didn’t go to counseling until I absolutely wanted to. I needed help with the bipolar. I didn’t look for it until I tired of making poor choices. Now that I have my life back, I want to give back the best way I know how.

How does your website show that?

I can help people get what they want. Most social and faith-based organizations come about from seeing a need in the community. In order to help others, they begin a project. Sometimes they have the seed monies to pay for services offered. Then, to get over a rough patch, they realize they need to ask for more.

That’s where I come in. I write grant proposals. Generally, I write for those organizations that align with my general values. I write grant proposals that cover:

  • cleaner air
  • cleaner water
  • food security
  • reading
  • art.

To be fair, these arent the only subjects Ill write grants for. If you want my help and your niche or project isnt in the above list, ask me anyway! Youve nothing to lose by asking. If I must say no (my calendar is full or you need it sooner than I can reasonably write it), you havent lost anything but a couple of minutes in emails. In light of that, if you want my help, just ask me for it.

I write because I must. I write grant proposals because I like to serve worthy causes. (Yes, I realize “worthy” is a relative term.)

That’s why I changed my website. I changed from thoughtful, unfocused musings to more focused words. Not quite laser-beamed precision, but something to aim at.

Have you ever had to make a major overhaul of a website? Did you begin a new one or simply re-focus your original one?