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This past week I have appeared on several blogs, as a guest
who was interviewed and as a guest blogger. After seeing what
Amanda Hocking did with blogs, using them to spread the word
about her work, I've watched how bloggers use info and each
other to educate, entertain, promote and introduce. Some are
intense with information while others dance with personality.
Whether quirky or dark, happy or literary, factual or whimsical,
blogs can be used for promotional purposes.
What to know about using blogs for promotion:
1. It isn't about you as much as it is about providing information
to the readers.
Sean McLachlan's Civil War Horror Blog may not seem like a pertinent
site to appear for C. Hope Clark or Lowcountry Bribe, but when you
see the subject matter it makes sense. "History is the Foundation for
Any Novel" discussed how any novel deserves historical research to
make the story more authentic. With a setting in South Carolina,
history, both good and bad, is represented in the architecture,
stories, families, food, art, even agriculture, and I would have been
remiss not to include come of that in a story set in the state.
Mobile Writers Guild asked me to guest post more about FundsforWriters
topics - How to Make a Living as a Writer. I was a guest, and I
provded useful information, but as a one-time presenter, most
readers don't feel the need to respond, and as an information blog
from an organization, it's not highlighting any one book or author.
I visited their world, left my footprint, and gave them take-away
value for now or future reference. Of course I mentioned the new novel.
3. Readers are hunting for a connection, an AHA moment, or
true takeaway value for their personal use.
Pen & Prosper is managed by Jennifer Brown Banks, who has
diligently built her writing career over the years, frequented
FundsforWriters, and contributed to many of my newsletters with
articles. So when she asked me to do an intervievw, I jumped at
the chance to repay her loyalty. In her own right, she's published
on many online blogs and periodicals. She gave her readers a connection
to me, and with one question, tried to show a side of me nobody
knew about. Here is the first of a two-part interview - A Glimpse
of Hope-Pen & Prosper Presents Hope Clark of Funds for Writers.
4. Blogs aren't instant gratification - they take time, but quality
rises to the top with diligence.
Elizabeth Boyce writes Bluestocking Ball, a blog that is rich, rich,
rich in writing, romantic history, and literary flavor. I've read
her historical romance manuscripts, and she's destined to publish,
and publish well. The blog is not very old, but it's a hidden gem I
hope others will follow once mentioned here. Elizabeth asked for a
brief interview with me, offering some great questions, digging into
the guts of Lowcountry Bribe based on her knowledge AFTER reading
the book. This blog is smart, and I stop to take time to read it.
She's also giving away a copy of Lowcountry Bribe, so leave a comment!
The Carolina Slade Mystery Series is live with its premier
book Lowcountry Bribe. Welcome to the world of Carolina Slade.
She's a simple government employee offered a bribe.
She follows the rules and tells the authorities.
Then all hell breaks loose because she did.
"Jesse drew me by my stretched sleeve to the truck bed, my face
barely a foot from the nearest body. "There's ten thousand dollars
in it for you," he whispered, draping his arm around my shoulders.
"If you find a way to get me the Williams farm. We can iron out
the details later . . . in private." He winked and clicked his
tongue. "If you know what I mean."
Panic coursed through me at the altered state. Like hearing that
your churchgoing mother liked bourbon straight and sex on top.
The 2012 Bylines Desk Calendar contains pieces from 53 writers
in 25 states, plus Ireland and the UK. If you've never seen a
Bylines Calendar, you're in for a treat. Each week contains a
short nonfiction piece from writers just like you. Even Hope has
a piece in this edition! This spiral bound week-to-week calendar
conveniently lies flat on your desk, for easy use. It's the
perfect size for . . . your desk, and since it's all about
writers, it's entertaining and educational as well as practical.
TOTAL FundsforWriters is our largest newsletters - 75 markets,
contests, grants, publishers, agents and jobs for writers.
Just envision FundsforWriters, only five times larger.
Delivered biweekly to you by email.
Only $15/year for 26 issues. That's 1950+ opportunities.
"When I sit down at my writing desk, time seems to vanish.
I think it's a wonderful way to spend one's life."
~ Erica Jong
SUCCESS OF THE WEEK
I just wanted to thank you for alerting me (through Funds
for Writers) to Cool Well Press. We're in the middle of
the second edit on a re-release of The River Goddess & Other
Stories, which should be out in E-book in March, to be followed
by its sequel, Starfriends, and eventually by Book 3 (as yet
untitled since I'm still writing it). Then, I'm told, all
three books will be printed. Very exciting!
If you keep your eyes and ears open, you'll probably find that
life is full of amazing and wonderful opportunities. The art of
writing is no exception- contests, submission calls, grants and
workshops abound, many of which can help a writer become stronger
at their craft. Of course, if you have the least bit of a skeptical
nature, you'll quickly realize just how unlikely some of the
opportunities are to ever happen.
I'm fairly diligent about looking for new markets and ideas, but
when I come across a prospect that's a complete long shot, I often
wonder whether I should even bother trying. To be honest, more often
than not, I don't even try. Instead, like many people, I resign myself
to the fact that the opportunity is out of my league, and I should
probably just concentrate on smaller pieces of pie.
The thing is, I've been feeling hungry for a bigger slice. I've
been reading helpful how-to articles for writers, subscribing to
lists, and taking writing challenges for some time, and I keep
seeing a similar piece of advice. The idea is that at some point,
you need to just go for it.
In my late night internet reading, I came across an online writing
program through UCLA extension that seemed perfect. The variety and
focus of the classes, the experience of the instructors, and the
fact that I could take classes online and fit them in my life seemed
like an ideal match. My practical dream squelching side kicked in
fairly quickly, and I looked at the cost. My excitement began to
wither. I continued to browse the site, albeit feeling somewhat
defeated. As I looked around though, an opportunity presented itself.
There were ten scholarships available for the writing program this
year. If ever there was a total long shot, this was it- I mean,
this is a program through UCLA. I would think there would be
some serious competition, and I'm a small scale mama writer living
in the hills. The odds of my winning seemed very, very small.
But, I decided that all of these helpful how-to gurus might be on
to something. I decided to just go for it. Yes, it was a long shot,
and very unlikely, but the worst they could do was tell me was no.
I procrastinated on writing the required essays until a few days
before the application was due, but when I wrote, I tried to speak
from my heart about how much the program would mean to me. I gave
it my best shot, and sent the packet off into the universe with my hopes
Weeks passed and I had not thought much more about it, until one
afternoon when an email came in my box...."We are pleased to let
you know ...."
I had to reread it at least six times to make sure it was true
before I could celebrate. I simply couldn't believe that I was
actually awarded one of the ten scholarships.
My long shot had paid off.
The reality is that I have no idea how many people applied or
what the actual odds were in this opportunity, but I had certainly
perceived that they were stacked against me. Had I listened to my
practical side and not decided to just go for it anyway, I would
never have won the scholarship, and I wouldn't be starting classes
I know not every long shot will pay off. Not every one will even
be worth the effort involved, but if you're feeling up for whatever
an opportunity is, don't let the odds discourage you. If you never
reach for that bigger piece of pie, you'll be stuck with the tiny
MISSOURI REVIEW'S 5TH ANNUAL AUDIO CONTEST http://www.missourireview.com/audiovisual/submissions/
ENTRY FEE PAYABLE BY DONATION (ASKING MINIMUM $20)
Winners and select runners up will be featured on our website
and on our iTunes podcast. Select runners up also receive cash
prizes. All entrants receive a one-year, digital subscription
to The Missouri Review. Deadline March 15, 2012.
Poetry or Prose or Audio Documentary: Time: 10 minutes or less.
First Prize: $1,000 in each category.
NORTON GIRAULT LITERARY PRIZE http://barelysouthreview.digitalodu.com/the-norton-girault-literary-prize/
$25 ENTRY FEE
The Norton Girault Literary Prize will be offered in 2012 for
FICTION- one prize will go to a single short story up to 25
pages (double-spaced). The winning story will receive $1,000
and publication in Barely South Review. One honorable mention
will also be selected for publication. Deadline February 29,
THE PATRICIA DOBLER POETRY AWARD http://www.gradstudies.carlow.edu/creative/dobler-award.html
$20 ENTRY FEE
This contest is open to women writers over the age of 40 who
are U.S. citizens or permanent residents, currently living in
the U.S., who have not published a full-length book of poetry,
fiction, or non-fiction. Each poem must be unpublished, up to
75 lines/poem. Up to two poems, of any style, per submission.
Submissions must be postmarked by or before April 2, 2012.
The winner will receive the Patricia Dobler Poetry Award, in
the form of round-trip travel and lodging as a participating
guest of Carlow's MFA residency in Pittsburgh, Pa, January 3-13,
2013; publication in Voices from the Attic; and a reading at
Carlow University with judge Toi Derricotte. All entrants will
receive a copy of Voices from the Attic.
SPECULATIVE LITERATURE FOUNDATION OLDER WRITERS GRANT http://www.speculativeliterature.org/Grants/SLFOlderWriters.php
The Speculative Literature Foundation (SLF) is pleased to announce
that it is accepting applications for the 2012 Older Writers Grant.
The grant of $750 is available to any writer of speculative literature
of 50 years or older at the time of application who is just beginning
to work professionally in the field. There are no restrictions on the
use of the grant money.
The grant will be awarded by a committee of SLF staff members on
the basis of interest and merit. Applicants are asked to submit a
brief autobiographical statement, a writing sample, and a
bibliography. Applications must be received by March 31, 2012.
The successful applicant will be announced on June 1, 2012.
UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN CREATIVE WRITING FELLOWSHIPS http://www.creativewriting.wisc.edu/fellowships.html
Since 1986, the University of Wisconsin's Institute for
Creative Writing has provided time, space, and an intellectual
community for writers working on a first book of poetry or
fiction. The Institute also awards a fellowship for playwrights.
At present, the Institute annually offers up to seven year-long
fellowships. Typically there are three fiction fellowships
(the Carl Djerassi Fiction Fellowship, the James C. McCreight
Fiction Fellowship, and the Carol Houck Smith Fiction Fellowship),
two poetry fellowships (the Jay C. and Ruth Halls Fellowship and
the Diane Middlebrook Poetry Fellowship), one playwriting
fellowship (the Carl Djerassi Playwriting Fellowship), and one
fellowship in either fiction or poetry for a graduate of the
University's MFA Program in Creative Writing (the Halls Emerging
Artist Fellowship). Each of these fellowships carries with it a
$27,000 stipend, generous health benefits, and a one-course-per-
semester teaching assignment in intermediate or advanced
undergraduate creative writing. Applications to the poetry,
fiction, and HEAF fellowships must be received in the month of
February. Applications to the Djerassi Playwriting Fellowship
must be received by April 1.
KENTUCKY TEACHING ARTISTS REGISTRY http://artscouncil.ky.gov/Opportunities/TAD.htm
Deadline March 15, 2012 to apply. An online directory of Kentucky
artists who produce high quality artistic work and have the skills
and competencies needed to work with teachers and students in
designing and implementing arts education programs. Open to
professional artists and folk artists who reside in Kentucky and
are proficient in developing lesson plans and working in a
classroom setting. Grants compensate for expenses.
NEWSPACE MAGAZINE http://www.newspacemagazine.com/
NewSpace Magazine is a website magazine focusing on space tourism.
The magazine serves readers who desire information about events
in the commercial spaceflight and space tourism industries. It
also explores the social, political, and economic impact of
space tourism. Query first. Limit 1,000 words. Pays up to
KENTUCKY LIVING http://www.kentuckyliving.com/askaboutfreelancing.html
Primarily read by members of Kentucky's electric cooperatives.
Front of the book section focuses on energy and back of the book
section focuses on culture. Excellent guidelines on website
as well as an editorial calendar. Buys all rights. Articles
are 500 to 1,500 words. Pays $75 to $935. Holiday pieces are
needed at least six months in advance. All nonfiction.
LOUISIANA COOKIN http://www.louisianacookin.com/
Louisiana Cookin' is the only national magazine for the
connoisseur of Louisiana's unique culture, cuisine, and travel
destinations. Published six times a year, each issue contains
more than 50 authentic recipes, with tips from professional
chefs and home cooks alike. Accepts email queries to
firstname.lastname@example.org . Articles are 1,000 to 2,000 words
plus recipes, and pays $350. Columns are $250. Kill fee 20
LOW-RESIDENCY MFA MENTORS NEEDED http://www.wcsu.edu/writing/mfa
Brian Clements, MFA Coordinator - email@example.com
The Low-Residency MFA in Creative and Professional Writing at
Western Connecticut State University (Danbury, CT) seeks part-
time writing mentors to work with students in one-on-one tutorials.
Tutorials may be conducted at a distance, but mentors must be
available to make brief appearances at January and/or August one-
week residencies for meetings with students and to offer occasional
workshops, lectures, and/or readings at residencies. Mentors
typically work with 1-3 students per semester.
Needs are in the following creative and practical genres: fiction,
creative nonfiction, memoir, magazine feature writing, writing for
new media, technical writing, grant writing and PR/Marketing.
Mentors must have a terminal degree, a strong record of
publication and professional experience. As WCSU is a dynamic,
diverse workplace, the proven ability to work effectively with
people from a variety of backgrounds and cultures is highly
valued. Compensation varies according to number of students
mentored and level of participation at residencies. Interested
candidates should email a cover letter and resume/curriculum
WRITER - EDITOR
Location Ft Meade, MD http://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/309083300
Deadline February 22, 2012. DMA is a worldwide media organization
employing state-of-the-art and emerging multi-media production
and distribution technologies and operates from multiple
locations in the US and overseas and with deployed combat and
contingency forces throughout the world. Research, develop,
and write stories for use in the Hometown News Release Program.
Verify factual information through interviews or research
Manage a stock story database consisting of over 3,000 individual
stories. Employer Defense Media Activity.
Location Washington DC http://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/303242200
Reports and writes stories that adhere to the highest principles
of professional journalistic ethics. Provides fairness and balance
in all articles and photographs. Aggressively responds to breaking
spot news. Reports feature stories that provide diversity and
broad audience appeal. Provides photographs to accompany stories
and looks for opportunities to supply standalone feature or news
photographs. Regularly produces profile stories and longer pieces
on significant newsmakers and leaders within the coverage area.
Employer Defense Media Activity, specifically Stars & Stripes.
$45K to $59K/year.
THE HOLMES AGENCY http://www.holmesliterary.com/
Kristina Holmes has started her own literary agency, The Holmes
Agency. Holmes plans to take on nonfiction clients exclusively.
Her list will be open to several different genres, including
health and wellness, business, psychology, spirituality, sex,
relationships, environmental issues, science, nature, literary
nonfiction and memoir. Previously, Holmes was a partner literary
agent and consultant at Ebeling & Associates Literary Agency for
McDONALD & WOODWARD http://www.mwpubco.com/submissions.htm
The McDonald & Woodward Publishing Company's mission is to publish
books in natural and cultural history--as broadly defined--for the
curious and educated elements of the general population. We do
We are looking for books that are well organized, clearly
written, and substantive, yet accessible by a broad readership.
HARBOURLIGHT PUBLISHING http://www.pelicanbookgroup.com/ec/write-for-us
All stories must be Christian fiction between 25,000 and 80,000
words. Harbourlight books should convey life as it is lived, or
can be lived, by people of faith. Because life can be humorous,
mysterious, hazardous, and even a bit otherworldly, with angels
popping in at times, Harbourlight books can encompass a variety
of elements. The setting for Harbourlight books can be contemporary,
historical or futuristic. They may even feature supernatural
elements; however, an element of faith must be present in all
Harbourlight stories without becoming overbearing or preachy.
Mystery, (cozy or other)
Suspense, crime drama, police procedural
AWARD-WINNING WRITER, PUBLISHER
WILL EDIT YOUR NOVEL, MEMOIR, POETRY
Have your writing edited by an award-winning, professional
writer, editor, and publisher, one who knows how to help
you prepare your writing for publication. Richard Krawiec
has published novels, biographies, text books, plays, and
a story and poetry collection. He won the 2009 Excellence
in Teaching Award from UNC Chapel Hill. His essays, feature
articles, and reviews have appeared in major newspapers and
magazines across the US. The NY Times, LA Times, Publishers
Weekly have reviewed his work. Awards include National
Endowment for the Arts and NC Arts Council grants, as well
as nominations for the National Book Award, Best American
Short Stories, and Pushcart Prize. He is founder of Jacar Press.
HIRE AN AWARD WINNING DESIGNER/AUTHOR TO DEVELOP YOUR WEBSITES
Shaila Abdullah has over a decade of experience designing
websites for authors. Being an author herself, she understands
the industry, and will provide you with a website that reflects
your unique style, genre, and personality.
Other design services such as book covers & interiors, marketing
materials, and email campaigns (newsletters, announcements, etc.)
"I thank Shaila for her expertise, knowledge, creativity, and
her ability to turn ordinary into extraordinary. Since working
with her, I now have a beautiful book that hit #1 one on Amazon,
a monthly newsletter that captures the attention of my valued
readers, and a beautiful website that has generated a tremendous
amount of interest in my subject matter with over 245,000 hits.
I am truly grateful to her for helping turn my dreams into reality."
HOW TO WRITE A TV SERIES
How many times have you bought a how-to book on the
writing and wished you could have asked the author for advice,
feedback on your ideas or clarification of confusing concepts?
Christina Hamlett's latest release, How to Write a TV Series,
is now available at www.offthebookshelf.com and is the
of several editions designed to give readers an interactive
option for one-on-one coaching by a professional script consultant.
Good Oak Press helps
authors get their books published.
Our services include cover design, typesetting, ebook
formatting and publishing, and POD printing and publishing.
Please visit our website at www.GoodOakPress.com to learn
about how we can help you achieve your dream of being published.
Woke up to a full inbox of registrants for the 2012 retreats...
no matter how much I'd like to think it's all my doing...if
it weren't for C Hope Clark and her FundsforWriters.com
newsletter, I would barely have a soul signed by now...and
less than 48 hours after the first advert went out...amazing.
If you want to advertise any kind of service within the
literary world, this is THE place to do it. Thanks Hope!
For my first advertising for my fledgling business I needed to
make strategic choices within a very limited budget. I chose
to advertise in two places: the Funds for Writers (FFW)
newsletter and a major writer's magazine (circulation of 100,000).
FFW far outperformed the magazine! From my first FFW ad I got an
immediate and enormous spike in traffic to my web site and within
24-hours had more than 100 people sign up on my website. And that
was just the first ad! Over the course of the six-week ad campaign
I saw a noticeable spike in traffic after each ad hit people's
inboxes and in total garnered at least 500 new sign-ups.
If you're thinking about advertising in FFW, do it!