Friday, July 31, 2009
My cat is perched beside the computer, my cup of ice is stationed on the other side, and I'm closing down the blog - here I go...
Thursday, July 30, 2009
All-in-all my "press formula" seems to be working. All three press release projects have been successful in that I've been able to get press publication for articles at work, for the reunion, and for my book.
Here's why I think it's working:
- I've written several versions of the press releases to appeal to the audience served by the publications. As an example, for Do You?, I decided to target NJ and NH publications. For NJ publications I used a tag-line that mentioned that I am a local, NJ author. For NH publications I used the tie-in that I'm a NH high school graduate. Both appeal to the audience who want to hear about local success. In addition, the subject matter can also be utilized as a tie-in for industry specific publications. It's all about showing the recipient of the press release why your news is important to the publication's audience.
- I created a list of publications in the targeted area/industry/genre and researched contact names to correspond to each publication.
- When sending the press releases, I chose to send them via email with a personalized message for each publication. It's a bit more time consuming but the extra time increases the success of the story. Think about it, are you more likely to open an email that is personalized or one that looks like spam? Me, I'd open the personalized email and chuck the spam.
- And finally, I used a version of the tie-in tag line in the email subject so the person receiving the press release automatically knows that this is a story that has appeal to the readers.
I'm not saying that I'm a pro at this by any means, but I'm excited by the success in what I've been doing on a small scale. Now the trick is to create a plan that can be implemented on a national level for my next novel once it gets published.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
This is a nice overview of her "Proposal to Publication" series. Here's an excerpt:
"As I was reading through it, I noticed there are some lessons you could take away in terms of what you can be preparing yourself for, now, before you enter the process.
1. Many writers balk at the requirement to write a really strong book proposal. You may have noticed in Friday's post that everyone in the publishing company, including the sales, marketing, and art departments, are given your book proposal and sample chapters. They might not have time to read your whole book, but they need to know enough to do their jobs. This should be enough of an incentive for you to write the best book proposal you possibly can! If your book is fiction, that 1-sentence hook and 1-page synopsis are all-important..." read more
Monday, July 27, 2009
How to Get Rid of Writer's Block
How to Get Over Writer's Block
Five Ways to Break Through Writers Block
Breaking Through Writer's Block
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
Borders Expands Teen Section
By Jim Milliot -- Publishers Weekly, 7/22/2009 2:55:00 PM
Borders Group is rolling out a new teen section to take advantage of the relative strength of that category. “It’s a natural extension of what we’ve been doing,” said Kathryn Popoff, v-p of merchandising/trade books at Borders about the creation of Borders Ink...read more
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
"Let your hook be always cast; in the pool where you least expect it, there will be a fish."– Ovid
"Publius Ovidius Naso, the Roman poet known as Ovid, best known for the epic Metamorphoses, is considered one of the greatest poets of Latin literature. He was born in 43 B.C. in what is now Italy. He rose quickly in Roman government and was on track to become a senator when he chose to devote himself to poetry instead. His tale of Pyramus and Thisbe is the source for Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. Emperor Augustus exiled Ovid from Rome for unknown reasons in 8 A.D.; he died in exile in 17 A.D. " as quoted from the Today's Inspiration newsletter, Everyday Health Network.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
That's part of the reason why I write this blog. If I uncover a piece of information that is helpful to another writer, then I consider this blog to be a success.
On that note, I've been thinking a lot lately about how I can pass on the information not only to the writers that frequent here, but also the writers that are just beginning, the ones that are just discovering the magical world of books in schools around the world. It's something that has been rolling around in my head the last couple of weeks. I'd like to tour some local schools to encourage kids to explore their imaginations through books, reading them & writing them.
Upon researching writing tools for kids, I discovered these on the Library of Congress website Suggested Writing/Illustrating/Storytelling/Creating Pop-ups Topics.
Can anyone offer advice as to what might or might not work in sharing this knowledge with kids?
Monday, July 20, 2009
But then, after a moment, a silent voice in my head reminded me that some of the all-time great creative minds have had to endure rejection. I reminded myself that it's "paying the dues"; success cannot come without rejection.
George Lucas of Star Wars fame for example had his share of rejection. Did you know that Star Wars was turned down by several studios before being picked up by Twentieth Century Fox? Imagine if he would have quit after the first few studios turned him down, there would be no Star Wars - imagine! Here's a link to his biography on The Internet Movie Database.
And what about Stephen King who had over 30 rejections for Carrie. Check out this piece on him at Rejections & Writing Habits.
I think I need to read a few more of those stories right about now - Which artist has your favorite rejection-to-success story?
Saturday, July 18, 2009
I'm so happy that my press release distribution is generating interest, and I hope I can utilize some of this for future projects as well.
I'll keep you updated.
Friday, July 17, 2009
It's relaxing and spiritual at the same time. And it gives me an opportunity to do my morning stretches while I watch. I found I was better prepared to start my day, and more in touch with my creative side, which is always more alive in the morning than at night.
Now if I could only squeeze in some writing time right after it I'd have a perfect mix.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
THE 2010 NATIONAL INDIE EXCELLENCE AWARDS ARE NOW OPEN FOR SUBMISSIONS!
All entries must be postmarked by March 31, 2010.
Winners and Finalists will be notified May 15, 2010
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Book Deal for Self-Published Kindle Author
The tech news website Gizmodo thinks that Boyd Morrison may be the first writer to self-publish on the Kindle and secure a book deal. Morrison scored a book deal with Simon and Schuster's Touchstone imprint for "The Ark"--the imprint acquired "hardcover, paperback, audio, and electronic rights in the US and Canada." It is the second book in the author's Tyler Locke adventure series, and is scheduled for a summer 2010 release. Another book is planned for 2011...click here to read more
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
I'm forcing myself to revise, revise, revise; creating the most polished manuscript I can. I've had portions of my work read by people I trust for feedback, and then it's back to revise, revise, revise. I may even send my manuscript out to a professional editor, and submit it for reviews. I've got contests lined-up as potential venues. And every agent, contest, and professional I consider means research. My hope is that the added work will increase my chances of securing a traditional publisher for my novel. I will not lose hope, I will persevere, as I hope all of you will too.
And in the words of Cardinal Leon Joseph Suenes, "Hope is not a dream, but a way of making dreams become reality."
Outlook gloomy for US publishers - survey
Pay freezes, job insecurity and dissatisfaction characterise the US publishing industry,...
How Low Can You Go? PW's 2009 Salary Survey, by Jim Milliot -- Publishers Weekly, 7/13/2009
Monday, July 13, 2009
I've got so many writing projects just waiting in the wings, many that started as a single note in my notebook. But it's hard to keep denying those ideas that whisper to me in the quiet. I record them, hoping that one day I'll get the chance to develop them.
The hardest part is finding a way to categorize the character sketches, story ideas, and misc notes that I've accrued over the years. It's hard to be inspired by something that is sandwiched in a manilla folder collecting dust.
I remember seeing a news piece on Phyllis Diller and she used to have a huge card system to store all of her joke ideas. It worked for her.
But I'm very visual and I need to see the notes to be inspired by them. So I'm curious, fellow writers & artists, how do you deal with this problem?
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Chalk one up to perseverance!
Thursday, July 09, 2009
Ducts.org is a New York-based webzine devoted to publishing engaging personal essays, memoirs, art, fiction, poetry, humor and more. The webzine features emerging and under-recognized writers and artists alongside more established contributors.
Wednesday, July 08, 2009
The prize of a book contract (on the publisher’s standard form) covering world rights for a hardcover and a paperback edition, including an advance and royalties, will be awarded annually to encourage the writing of contemporary young adult fiction. The award consists of $1,500 in cash and a $7,500 advance against royalties...
Tuesday, July 07, 2009
Let me tell you, I was jumping around with excitement. I sat my husband and son down on the couch and read the entire article to them. They were excited too!
So, of course, I had to share the excitement with you.
So here's a link to the article: Hackensack Chronicle. Let's hope it's the beginning of many more to come.
Monday, July 06, 2009
For those of you pondering this question, this article by Jeff Yeager in the May/June issue of Writer's Digest is worth a read: 10 Questions Writers Must Ask Before Quitting Their Day Job
The idea of writing full-time is something I strive for, and yet as I ponder it I find there are many stepping stones to reach before it becomes an actionable reality.
Anyone out there already a full-time writer? Any advice or comments you'd like to offer on the subject?
Sunday, July 05, 2009
Ok, so I'm back from the camping trip and I miss it already. It was wonderful living a week without an agenda, and just enjoying every moment of the day.
]Here's what I'll miss the most about the trip:
- waking up and making coffee on the propane stove in the cool morning air
- the sounds of the loons and chipmunks in the morning
- paddling with my husband and son around the lake, visiting the island I used to camp on as a kid
- being present for everything, not being distracted by tasks
- going to bed at 8pm and waking up at 8am
- the feel of the the thick sleeping bag warming me against the cool air
- sitting around the campfire and listening to the light rain hit the leaves in the trees above
...and so much more. But now it's back to schedules, work, responsibilties, and a very long list of tasks that need to get done. And yes, back to writing too.
Saturday, July 04, 2009
This writer's contest exercises creative imagination by asking you to write descriptions for each of the photos or paintings displayed.
Friday, July 03, 2009
Writer's Digest Pop Fiction Awards
Writer's Digest is now accepting entries in the Pop Fiction Awards. Submit your entry (or entries!) now for your chance to win $2,500 cash, $100 worth of Writer's Digest Books and the 2010 Novel & Short Story Writer's Market. Compete and Win in 5 Categories!
Click here for additional information or to enter online!
Thursday, July 02, 2009
“Garden Verse” Poetry Competition sponsored by Horticulture magazine
Entry Deadline: September 1, 2009
First Place: $250 each
Second Place: $100 each
Third Place: $50 each
The names and poems of the First Place winners will be printed in an upcoming issue of Horticulture magazine. Afterwards, the names and poem titles of all winners and honorable mentions will be posted on www.hortmag.com.
Wednesday, July 01, 2009
- The FIRST ANNUAL POETRY CONTEST, with $3,300 in prizes.Entry deadline: July 18.
- The SPRING 2009 STORY CONTEST, with $6,500 in prizes. Entry deadline: July 31.