Sunday, February 14, 2021

The Details Matter

By Terry Whalin @terrywhalin

Last week I taught a zoom class at a local writer's group. I selected a topic that I've taught before with a prepared handout and solid information. I did not carefully review all the links in my handout before the workshop (a normal part of my practice). Several of the links didn't work and I had to rework my handout after the workshop and upload the corrected handout to my server.  These details matter.
I prepared a series of emails and social media campaign. I crafted a social media post and used it a number of times (each with a different image). From my active role on social media, I know that not everyone sees every posting. You need to post at various times and places because you never know who will be reading your work. In my carefully written post, I discovered a single word which was misspelled. I scheduled it in my Hootsuite program to post repeatedly over the next week. While it was time consuming that no one sees, I carefully edited each posting and fixed that single misspelled word. The details matter.
One of my writer friends purchased a product that I was promoting several months ago and could not find the place to login and use the program. She sent me a short email about it. Why? She knew I would respond (which I did). The first link I sent her did not work, then I thought of a second link to send her (more email exchanges). The second link worked and she got into her product. The details matter.
There is the ever-changing world of technology. Hard coded program that I use the operating system failed and needs to be reworked. Adobe flash stopped at the end of last year and several of my sites are not working properly and need to be revised. The list goes on but it's all part of the writing lifeā€”and using what you have in front of you. Not easy but the details matter.
Handling these types of details is time consuming and somewhat annoying but part of being a professional writer. As writers, our lives are often filled with mundane tasks like reading and answering email, engagement on social media, even doing social media, answering and returning phone calls and many more such tasks.  I recall what I've heard about elite sports figures and how they practice their craft over and over during days no one sees them or knows about their workouts. Yet such routines feed into their excellent results. It's the same in the world of publishing. The details have to be handled and matter.
Are you resisting or mired in details with a writing project or task? Why do the details matter in your work? Let me know in the comments below.

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