Leave a Comment: Day 31 of the October Platform Challenge

There are actually two tasks today: The first is to write and post your fifth blog post of the month. Keep the momentum and consistency going. The other is…

Leave a Comment

For today’s platform-building task, leave a comment on this blog below describing your October Platform Challenge experience. Did you like it? Did you hate it? Was it too much? Too little? Were there things you wish I’d covered that I didn’t? Do you feel like you’re in a better place now than you were a month ago?

Any and all feedback is welcome.


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Hopefully, this challenge helped, but it only scratched the surface of everything a writer can do to achieve more success with their writing career. Take advantage of the heavily discounted The Comprehensive Author Platform & Promotion kit today.

This power-packed platform and promotion kit includes three paperback books, three webinars, three tutorials, and more. So buy it today and keep pushing to new heights in November and beyond.

Click to continue.


What’s Next?

For this challenge, we’re at the end of the line. I will announce the winner of the drawing on 11/10/15 on the There Are No Rules blog. Plus, I’ll probably include some more information on how folks from this challenge are planning to stay in touch.

Beyond that, keep checking the There Are No Rules blog for helpful information from myself and all the other Writer’s Digest editors. Plus, there’s a chance a few guest posts may be in the works from your fellow October challenge participants.


Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community. He edits the Writer’s Market and Poet’s Market books and writes a poetry column for Writer’s Digest magazine. He’s also the author of the poetry collection, Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53).

Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.


Check out these other There Are No Rules posts:

94 thoughts on “Leave a Comment: Day 31 of the October Platform Challenge

  1. AvatarCarli Fierce

    I really enjoyed this challenge. I’m so happy that I was able to stick to my goal which was to complete every task each day. I’ve been a blogger for several years. But I knew there was still room to grow. I can’t believe I did not own my domain name. But thanks to you, now I do. I reached out to my favorite blogger for an interview. She actually said yes! I got her responses today, and I’m excited to do a series of posts with the questions. Additionally, I made an editorial calendar. I even wrote a poem. Many tasks pushed me outside of my comfort zone, but I did them anyway. Even though there are some things I probably won’t ever like, I’m much wiser for knowing and trying. Thank you so much!

  2. Avatarajauhola

    I’m working on balancing my day jobs with writing, but this challenge has given me several tools to help me reach that goal! Thank you for putting on the challenge, especially at no cost. It has reminded me how much I have to work on and how much I enjoy writing! Looking forward to any future challenges, perhaps a follow up challenge to this one.

  3. AvatarJennifer V

    I wrote a Halloween short story and posted it on my blog as a treat to my readers. I hope everyone enjoys it, even though it is now November. http://jennifervandenberg.com/heres-your-treat-an-original-halloween-story/

    I got a lot out of this Platform Challenge. I am actively using Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Wattpad. I started regularly blogging again and plan to follow my editorial calendar. I now know where my weak spots are and will work on them. Even though a lot of the assignments would be repeats I would gladly do another Platform challenge just so I don’t become a social media slacker. Thanks for all the inspiration.

  4. AvatarRitaJuanita

    Hmm. Well, I’d say I have a slightly better handle on the author platform thing. I’m still a long way away from feeling like I’m any good at it. I definitely got some good notions from this, though. Setting a calendar/plan for each month with tasks for daily platform development is good is probably one of the biggest helps–that and just having the push to do it! I’m not a big fan of social media for a couple of reasons (everybody is trying to sell something all the time!), including how much time it takes away from real life if people let it get away from them. I think having this plan with a few simple tasks helps, though, to let me avoid getting sucked in while still making some movement on this.

    Anyhow, them’s my thoughts! 😉 Thanks for the challenge!

  5. AvatarS.K. Lamont

    Having just begun to build my platform, this Platform Building Challenge has been an amazing journey into putting yourself out there and stepping out of your comfort zone. The biggest reach for me was probably doing a blog, because I really didn’t think I had anymore time for another writing assignment in my life, that was not directly connected to producing fiction works and refining them. I soon discovered though, that if I was serious about building platform and participating in this challenge, that meant jumping in fully with both feet. I found that there was room for something more, when I thought there wasn’t, plus I realized, if I didn’t fully participate in the Challenge I wouldn’t be able to meet all the goals.

    My most amazing take away is that I have discovered a new circle of friends to share this journey with. I tend to be a bit of an island, especially when it comes to my writing, so discovering a community that I get to share this journey with is priceless!

    Thank so much for this wonderful Challenge! I feel like it has catapulted my platform years ahead, where I would have probably plodded along slowly adding one piece at a time. This has truly been a challenge and a brilliant one at that, thank you Robert for all the work you have put into it!

    So here is my fifth blog post for the month, the one thing that I said I was definitely not going to do, thank you!

  6. AvatarKim Bailey Deal

    This challenge opened my eyes to the possibilities of writing, being a part of a culture of writing with like-minded people who really, for the most part, care about other people succeeding as well. I have learned so much about how to market myself by knowing myself as a writer, what my goals are, how to be more disciplined and do my work on a consistent basis, and how I want to be recognized. Thank you, Robert and Writer’s Digest, for offering this challenge to anyone willing to participate. The wealth of knowledge and confidence gained has been priceless. The connections made because of this challenge are beyond measure! Thank you!!


  7. Avatarjane_vee

    I really enjoyed the format of the challenge. Having the tasks laid out as a daily routine made a daunting mountain of work feel achievable. It was really great to connect with other challenge members, through twitter, reading comments – it felt like we were doing the challenge as a group, which was motivating. Now that I have a “platform”, having my name “out there” on the internet is exciting, but I have days where my insecurity bubbles up. I am an introvert, so it’s new and a bit intimidating to have blog posts that blab a more personal perspective to the world. My plan for November is to revisit all of the challenge items, systematically, so that this social media stuff can become part of my routine. Thank you so much for offering this challenge for free. Because the challenge was so great, I am curious to check out some of the pay programs and stuff on this website. Thank you, Robert, for creating such a fun challenge. -Jane

  8. Avatarsemayawibeth

    Though I have yet to post consistently on the blog, I got so much out of this challenge! Loved all the information, inspiration, and the topics really caused me to think about my online presence. Thanks so much for all of it!!!

  9. AvatarYvonneM

    Hi – I really enjoyed the October Platchal but found especially toward the end of the month between work, social media, posting, writing, family, (not necessarily in order of priority or importance, lol,) it was difficult to keep up and I was always playing catch up. Still, I did it! I learned a lot, especially about how to increase traffic to my blog, SEOs, Twitter and the benefits of making an editorial calendar. It was nice to “meet” some new people online through the challenge and I wish you continued success with your writing and I will definitely be checking in on your blog. I very much enjoy WD and its dedication to helping writers. The experiences I have had through this site including plat challenge, boot camp and research tools have really helped me as a writer. Seventeen months ago I was a person who loved to write but never envisioned I could write a novel. I have now written a novel, am working on two more and consistently writing my blog. I have many goals related to my writing and WD has really helped me to crystalize them and start to make them a reality. The support and encouragement I have received through the ideas and tools offered through Writers Digest have been invaluable. Thanks so much. “Done.”

  10. AvatarConnieCockrell

    I’ve loved this challenge. Thank you so much. I had picked up many things over the last four years but never had it all spelled out in a way that made me feel as though I was covering the important points. My biggest hurdle was the SEO lesson. I’ve heard it’s important but everything I read was so complicated I just shook my head and went on about my day. Thanks for boiling it down into simple steps.

  11. AvatarKarenDoll

    I thoroughly enjoyed the Platform Challenge! Although, I didn’t have time to complete every task in the timeframe, I kept a list, checked off completed tasks and plan to incorporate those that I didn’t have time to do. All in all, the challenge made me more aware of what it takes to build a strong presence. It also reminded me of things I need to do on a regular basis and commit to doing so. I had never heard of Wattpad before, and will definitely look into that. I like the fact that a lot of the tasks focused on writing blog posts as I’ve been working on improving my posting rate, quality of posts, SEO aspects, etc. and those tasks blended in nicely with what I’ve been working on. So, thank you Robert for all of your great tips and advice, effort and time to help us.

  12. AvatarKelly1417

    I liked the challenge, but I ended up picking and choosing which tasks to take on. I know I should have tried to do it all, but laziness and reluctance set in. Even so, I did not have anything in the way of a platform at the beginning of October, so what I did do has still been a huge benefit.

  13. AvatarSharon

    I always get a lot out of the challenges. Other than the twitter challenges, which I attempted to get involved in, but failed miserably, and requesting to do a guest post on someone’s blog (I simply ran out of time), oh, right and the whole SEO thing… Well, here I was thinking I did REALLY well with this challenge when in reality, the things I needed most to get a handle on, I failed to do! Shoot. Well, I still got a lot out of it, and I am posting more frequently, so that’s something. How all this builds my author platform and sells my book(s) is another matter entirely. As an indie author my biggest problem is a lack of confidence and no amount of challenges can help me there. Thanks Mr. Brewer, for another opportunity to explore possibilities.

  14. AvatarDRZ

    I appreciated the challenge, and it helped me get to find some more writing bloggers out there! I would’ve liked some “tougher” challenges, like the one about writing a guest blog, something which I wouldn’t have done otherwise for my personal blog. Overall, though, it was a little too beginner’s for me, since I had already done a lot of the tasks. However, it was still valuable.

  15. Avatarrsmonterusso

    I forgot to actually post something yesterday, but I did blog Friday, so that was already covered. For me, this challenge was helpful in that it put me more in the mindset of being a professional. I completely built a new website and have used SEO techniques to help people find it better. It helped me to branch out in terms of guest posts and pitching posts on other blogs and kept me accountable for learning how to platform. It wasn’t always easy, but I’m glad I participated. Thanks.

  16. AvatarAJMCCARTHY

    At times I had trouble keeping up during the challenge and at other times I was ahead of the game. But, one thing is for sure, I have come out of it with more knowledge, less fear, and a greater awareness of my strengths and weaknesses. I will try to build on the strengths and work on the weaknesses. It was a very worthwhile challenge and I will, as much as possible, incorporate everything I learned into my writing life. Thank you, Robert.

  17. AvatarSasha A. Palmer

    I enjoyed the challenge. I was away for some time in October and couldn’t always leave a comment, but I read all the posts.

    My favorite task was – define yourself as a writer. It was a fun and useful exercise. Very helpful.

    Thank you, Robert, and good luck with PAD Challenge over at Poetic Asides!

  18. AvatarEric

    I appreciated this challenge because it allowed me to discover new approaches and gave me a bit of a clue as to creating a platform (which I was previously clueless about). As far as work load, I was easily able to keep up with it (for the most part) and appreciated the days when you reminded writers to write.

    I fell down a bit at the end of the month because of my career, but such is the way of life.

    Thank you for this challenge, and I look forward to your poetry challenge in April (though I doubt I’ll be able to keep up with that one as easily).

  19. AvatarLynn Fowler

    It has been interesting. Some of the things I have been doing already. Some I had signed up for but never done much with – e.g., Twitter. A few times life has got in the way and I have missed a few days and had to come back and do several at once. Overall, it has been a very worthwhile experience.

  20. Avatardr.zainab

    It was really really helpful.Though i have not completed some of the tasks but i am working on them.It was great fun connecting with like minded people.Looking forward to stay connected.
    Thank you so much sir.It was a great help.
    And looking forward to connect to all writer friends out here.

  21. AvatarEncy Peterson

    It’s been fun, and I’m thankful we weren’t kept to strict schedules to perform said tasks. Allowing us to manage our own schedule made things easier, especially for those who have numerous lists of things to be done. I also liked that links to everyone’s blogs were put in one concise list for us to peruse and read fellow writers items was useful for more than just completing platform challenges.

    I don’t remember if I managed to perform or even comment on every challenge, but I know I tried. Just knowing I tried to do something to aid me and that I had other commentators that were willing to give advice, and also not afraid to ask for it or give what issues they had with things, made me able and more willing to actually attempt to keep up with my blog. Now, with NaNoWriMo about to start, I am more confident about reaching my goals.

  22. Avatarslcoffey

    Since Day 1, I have started my own website with my blog included, a new Facebook page that is open to the public, joined Twitter, joined Google +, revisited my Pinterest page, and interviewed an author. The website was the biggest challenge because I had to learn how to navigate the design phase. I will post my new post tomorrow. I can’t thank you enough, Robert. So much great advice and you offered all this to us without charging a price except the price of time and perseverance. Thanks again

  23. AvatarStephanie Wenburg

    I have enjoyed it. I was really well keeping up with things up until the mid-point and then I fell behind! But I am happy to partake in this and I enjoyed connecting with others!

    Thank you for creating this challenge. I hope everyone lot luck with finishing this up and continuing all the success with their blogs.

    Good luck with all your writing goals! 😀

  24. AvatarLeah Henderson

    I’m really grateful for this kick in the behind to get me started on my platform…something that has been long overdue. I will say I am not the type that can create a website or a blog in a matter of days. Too many decisions and too many options, so that was/is a little frustrating for me. But I’ve loved the camaraderie, the push, and the support from other challenge participants.

    I’ll always be a work-in-progress! 🙂

  25. Avatarnickky84

    blog post done. I really enjoyed the October platform development challenge. I really appreciate how you made me think about what I was already doing and what I was doing but broke it up into small bite-size chunks so that it wasn’t overwhelming. I do however have more questions about SEO. I look forward to finding out how to better stay connected to the people who participated in this challenge.

  26. AvatarSherlock

    Blog post done.

    I had not done the Challenge before and I really appreciated the variety of tasks and the exposure to social media to which I had not previously used or even in some cases, been aware of. Thanks for sponsoring it.

  27. AvatarMajida

    I am so excited happy about this challenge that I am writing what I posted on the Rules page on Day 1 of the challenge.

    Of Challenges and Sundries
    “Mama, you think everything happens because of you. It doesn’t,” says my daughter whenever something good happens and I tell her that the Universe or God did it for me.

    “I know 2015 October Platform Challenge started because of me, dear daughter☺”

    So, there!!

    I will start commenting on the first post of 2015 October Platform Challenge by saying, “Thank you, thank you and thank you Mr. Brewer for putting up this challenge.”

    Excuse me for writing ‘Thank you’ three times. My high school English teacher was so strict about repeating a word but she didn’t know that I would be participating in such a wonderful challenge where I have been informed, three times to be exact, that I should focus on intrinsic benefit. My dear teacher I am just following the lead. Mr. Brewer, please accept my gratitude for minimizing our task by taking care of extrinsic benefit.

    Rules or no Rules?
    A businessman says to his colleague, “Times are tough and the market is bullish so I will wait for the market to stabilize and then I will take a decision about the direction of my business.”

    During my business class I was taught that what the businessman didn’t realize was that he has already taken the decision of ‘not acting’ and letting his business be guided by the market.

    ‘There are No Rules’ sound similar to the above anecdote. Wouldn’t you say, Mr. Brewer, that this is the first rule, i.e., there are no rules? I was hoping to find tons of rules albeit I found only the following rules in 2015 October Platform Challenge.
    • Start date is October 1, 2015 – not earlier
    • Cut off date and time: November 1, 2015 at 11:59 p.m.
    • To be eligible for the prize a person has to enter
    • Only one entry per post
    Please note that I am excluding the first and the last rule because it has already been taken care of.

    I so eagerly look forward to reading and commenting on more posts. In the meantime I would like to end my entry # 1 by thanking you once again for giving me a chance. I am looking forward to having fun, fun and more fun!

    Funnily yours,

  28. AvatarMajida

    I was fortunate to have found 2015 October Platform Challenge. I would like to thank Mr. Brewer for organizing the challenge. Here is my opinion about the challenge. First I will write about What I loved and then What was challenging for me. My comments on the blog can be checked at https://apakistaniwomansjourney.wordpress.com/. Thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog.

    What I Loved
    1. Connecting with wonderfully good people.
    2. Assignments were set up to make us successful.
    3. Resources for the assignments.
    4. Nudge to join social media.
    5. Gone writing.
    6. Reaching others in the industry for the interview.
    7. Writing guest post – I am so eagerly looking forward to see it published.
    8. Forcing me to think why I don’t like to put myself out there.
    9. Joining the after-challenge group.
    10. Seeing more resources as promised.
    11. Goals and editorial calendar.
    12. Making list for November.
    13. Being coaxed into regular blogging.
    14. Mr. Brewer’s openness to contact him.
    15. Opportunity to write a pitch. (Though not directly)

    What Was Challenging
    1. Putting myself out there.

  29. Avatarwordmage

    Task 1: Blog post done:

    Task 2: I am totally bummed that today is the last day of the challenge. I found myself looking forward to what new thing task I would be asked to do that took me further away from that place called comfort. I only hope that once November hits, I don’t slingshot back into the ‘zone’. STOP! Rewind — I know that because of the tasks completed and strides made during October, that I will continue to push the boundaries and forge ahead! Thank you Robert and Fellow Challengers!!!

  30. Avatarcandy

    This was certainly worth the time. I’ve been encouraged to think of my writing in new way and even summoned up the courage to fly over to twitter! Who knows where I’ll go next!
    Thanks Robert.

  31. AvatarCindy

    This challenge has been a lot of fun and I have learned quite bit. I am still trying to figure out twitter and still have a lot to learn about blogging. It is good practice for my writing. I am trying to learn everything I can and free is such enormous help especially when a person is retired and has limited money. Thank you for the experience.

  32. Avatarkuzitiz

    Commenting, and shared with The Writer’s Workout (www.writersworkout.net). We had a lot of fun with this challenge, and I learned a lot. I boosted the twitter followers for the group, as well as for myself, and we’re excited to keep up the momentum! Thanks so much for this month of lessons!

  33. AvatarMarie Rogers

    Well, I did it! I hit the “publish” button for the fifth time this month. I’ve learned a lot and my comfort zone has definitely expanded. I still have a long way to go to use these new sites effectively. I’m not comfortable yet with LinkedIn or Google+, but as I use them more I’ll figure out what works for me and what doesn’t. This challenge has been a lot of work, but isn’t a challenge supposed to be? I’m glad I stuck with it to the end. I’ve seen traffic on my website increase and I’ve had the pleasure of visiting interesting new sites. Thank you so much, Robert. I’ll recommend this challenge to other writers if you run it again.

  34. AvatarErinMuir

    Hey y’all! I just got home from some family stuff- and I wrote my blog for today, including poetry, sacred thoughts, and songs! All with a dash of irreverent whimsy.


    That said,

    I have so thoroughly enjoyed this challenge and getting to know some of you and reading your work! I hope to keep in touch and actually plan to do these challenges again, paralleling #nanowrimo, in the coming weeks!


    May all your wishes come true.


  35. AvatarAcronim

    I’m grateful I did this challenge. I was actually hesitant at the beginning, thinking I might fail at keeping up. I lost my writing confidence and been keeping myself away from writing things I wanted to write. Plus I don’t know if there’s someone who would pay attention at my work. But as I go along with everyday challenge I realized I’m gaining again my confidence to write my thoughts again. I was a blogger of my own thoughts years ago but for some discouragement I had I stop and close down my blog. But now I have a new blog and I knew I can keep it now for a very long time.

    The October Platform Challenge, I thought at first it was a workshop for writing. Well, I thought wrong and its good I was wrong. I realized the whole October Platform is stepping out from our comfort zone, building and maintaining our audience that we already reached, making new acquaintances, giving and taking inspirations from other writers, and yet still having fun since the life is hard already.

    I know life is hard but we writers are here to at least make some things a little bit easier. Life for writers isn’t definitely easy but we find happiness in writing and sharing our voices to the world by using the tools we already have.

    Robert, thank you for the whole month of challenge. I became happy again in writing. Thank you. ^^ Now I’m ready for the next challenge: the NaNoWriMo. Thanks for preparing myself. ^^

    P.S. This comment is also my post in my blog. http://bit.ly/1PXzmDj

  36. AvatarBrazenbookbug

    While I’m not consistent with posting yet, I am leaning on my revised editorial calendar to refine my newly-defined goals until they are habits – especially the posting. I am taking so much useful information with me as we I leave this challenge that I believe it is one of the smartest things I did to jump in late, keep up as well as possible, and learn a lot that I can put to use immediately. I hope you’ll see from my progress going forward that it proved to be a life-changing month for this participant!

    Thank you for offering the challenge at no-charge, Robert and Writer’s Digest. I’ve purchased many WD/WM resources in the past and will continue to purchase more in the future, but this blog group and and your guidance this month is already proving priceless!

    I’ll see all you writers in social media going forward, and will be watching and cheering for your own continued progress and great big successes!

    Traci 🙂

  37. AvatarAllison

    This was a very exciting challenge for me and I’m glad I participated. It forced me to realize that I have to treat my writing like a business because it is a business. The only thing I need more direction on are how to use SEO’s better but I have a book on that topic I haven’t read yet. I’m sad to go. I’ve made a lot of great connections and 12 people have started following my blog since I started this challenge.

    This challenge has also forced me to find the time to find, read and comment on other blogs as well as schedule some time to for Twitter. I’m not a big tweeter but I can’t ignore the opportunity to use it for marketing.

    Thank you, Robert Brewer, for putting this together.


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