The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.
Here’s an excerpt:
The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 10,000 times in 2015. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 4 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.
The San Diego County OASIS catalog for courses scheduled for January through April is out, but may not be so easy to find. The list of courses is available on-line, but the registration period will not open until January 4, 2016. In the meantime, it is possible to create a wish list of the courses you with to take to make registering for them easier once registration opens. OASIS courses are open to anyone who is 50 years old or older. Here’s a preview of courses I think Guild members may find interesting.
Introduction to Creative Writing (course 315), taught by Lola Sparrowhawk and David Feldman (SDW/EG member)
Fridays, Jan 15-Feb 12, 10:15-12:30 at Mission Valley Macy’s. 5 sessions for $40.00
Join author Lola Sparrowhawk and editor David Feldman and learn how to begin your best-selling novel, family memoir, travel adventure, short story collection, poetry, or any creative writing project. Class includes lectures, handouts, and student participation. Read what you write, read optional homework assignments, or just come for fun! Instructors will also provide marketing and publishing tips. This is a beginning to intermediate level class.
Creative Writing (course 315), taught by Caroline McCullagh (SDW/EG member) and Lola Sparrowhawk.
Fridays, Feb 19-Apr 15, 10:15-12:30 at Mission Valley Macy’s. 9 sessions for $72.00
Classes will consist of lecture, handouts, reading and critiquing student work. The writing will be done outside of class – biography, fiction, poetry…you choose your genre. The instructors will also provide instruction on manuscript preparation and marketing tips and will be happy to personally critique your work between classes.
Intermediate Poetry Workshop (course 316), taught by Mary Harker
Tuesdays, Feb 9-Apr 12, 10:15-12:15 at Mission Valley Macy’s. 10 sessions for $25.00
This class is for people with some prior experience writing poetry. Class begins with 15-20 minutes of instruction, with the rest of the time being spent reading your poetry to the class, while receiving helpful feedback from the teacher and the group. Bring your poetry and at least 20 copies to share to the first class. Please make copies before coming to class.
The OASIS “Whodunit” Book Club (course 317), facilitated by Lisa Benton
Fridays, Jan 15-Apr 22, 1:00-3:00 at Mission Valley Macy’s. 8 sessions for $24.00
Do you enjoy reading a really good mystery? Do you like to match wits with the detective and figure out who committed the crime before the ending is revealed? Join us for a bi-monthly discussion of this intriguing literary genre. We’ll discuss the various types of mystery books available to readers, and we’ll pick a different author each meeting to read and evaluate. Let your inner “sleuth” come out and join us as we engage in lively and stimulating debates about what constitutes a tantalizing tale.
Meeting dates: 1/15, 1/29, 2/12, 2/26, 3/11, 3/25, 4/8, and 4/22.
OASIS Book Club (course 318), facilitated by Heather Chisholm-Chait
Fridays, Jan 22-Apr 22, 10:15-12:00 at Mission Valley Macy’s. 4 sessions for $8.00
Our discussions are stimulating and fun. Everyone has a chance to share, but no one is pressured to do so. Books for January: Fiction – Ghostwalk by Rebecca Stott; Non-Fiction – H is for Hawk by Hellen Macdonald.
Meeting dates: 1/22, 2/26, 3/25, 4/22.
Rendezvous with Books (course 319), led by Dale Spector
Wednesday, Feb 17, 1:00-2:15 (course 319.1) and Wednesday, Apr 6, 1:00-2:15 (course 319.2), both at Mission Valley Macy’s, 1 session for $8.00
Join Dale for an afternoon of book talks. She will share new titles and older titles that you may have previously missed! A wide range of books will be shared with different titles. Whether you read voraciously or only while on vacation, you will leave with a list of possible books for you to read and share with others.
Creative Writing (course 729), taught by Chloe Edge (SDW/EG member)
Fridays, Jan 15-Feb 19, 10:00-12:00 at Escondido Sr Ctr. 6 sessions for $30.00 (course 729.1) and Fridays, Mar 11-Apr 15, 10:00-12:00 at Escondido Sr Ctr. 6 sessions for $30.00 (course 729.2)
Are you a writer looking for a support group? Have you ever wanted to write a memoir? Do you write for excitement or for curiosity? Have you wanted to publish your work or learn a new form? Come write with us and enjoy exciting, creative, mind-expanding experiences as we explore free writing, fiction, non-fiction, memoir and poetry. The presenter is a book author and has been published multiple times. These will be the best hours of your week!
Other courses, outside of the field of writing or editing, are also among those offered through OASIS. Look for one-day offerings by Carolyn Jaynes, Richard Lederer, Tom Leech, and Phil Pryde.
- http://www.meetup.com/San-Diego-Writers/ – Meets twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays
- http://www.meetup.com/Valley-Write-and-Review/ – Meets twice a month on the second and fourth Thursdays.
The first group has been around for some time. The second is just getting started (at least with Meetup; it appears some of the members have been meeting in the past).
Note that both groups have larger numbers of members than those who RSVP. Valley Write and Review limits the number of participants at each meeting to 8, so if you RSVP, you better show up or face the wrath of the organizers, those who did attend expecting there to be 7 others, or someone who didn’t sign up because the number of attendees who RSVPed already was at the limit.
Do you have a Facebook account but not know what to do with it? Grossmont Adult School has a cost effective solution on its Super Saturday courses, Saturday, March 5, 2016. Several classes will be held that day at Foothills Adult Center, 1550 Melody Lane, El Cajon, CA 92019. One of those classes is Facebook Made Easy, taught by Stefanie Blue in Room 1. The cost is $25.00 for this morning only course.
Facebook is not just for students or young people. It can be a great way of staying connected with family and friends as well as a strong marketing platform. Bring a digital photo of yourself on a flash driver. Security precautions will be discussed in depth.
Prerequisites: You must have a current Facebook account and be able to sign into your account during class from a desktop computer.
Also offered Super Saturday, in the afternoon, is Social Media – Choosing the Right One for Your Business, also taught by Stefanie Blue. The fee is $25.
It seems like there is always something new in social media – and who has time to manage it all? Join the workshop to learn about the various aspects of Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube. During the course, participants will discover what to post, when to post, and which audience each one attracts. Learn to work smarter, not harder, with tips and tricks to market your business with social media.
Over the past months, I have introduced a number of social media platforms that can be used in your marketing efforts. At this point, I’d like feedback regarding which platforms you want to know more about. In the comments section, please type the one or two platforms you are most interested in exploring first. As a reminder, here are links to the social media options already introduced:
- Facebook – Marketing Monday – Facebook
- Google+ – Marketing Monday – Google+
- Hootsuite – Marketing Monday – Hootsuite
- Images for blogs – Marketing Monday – Images
- Instagram – Marketing Monday – Instagram
- LinkedIn – Marketing Monday – LinkedIn
- Pinterest – Marketing Monday – Pinterest
- Review Sources – Marketing Monday – Sources for book reviews
- Twitter – Marketing Monday – Twitter
To leave your feedback, scroll down below this post until you see “Leave a Reply” and add the names of the platforms you wish to learn more about in the Comment block or send a reply to firstname.lastname@example.org.
by Keoni Cabral
RootsRated is a media platform that connects users with the best outdoor experiences in participating cities, hand-picked by local outdoor retailers and their networks of local experts. They are planning to add San Diego to their list of cities in 2016. They are looking for a freelance writer for weekly feature assignments about local outdoor recreation topics. Profiles of local athletes, enthusiast groups, events, nonprofit organizations. Long-term paid assignments.
If interested, contact Lou Dzierzak, Managing Editor. Contact information follows.
- (612) 618-2780
- Visit RootsRated or download the iOS app and get outside!
- Follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.
To the 2015 Guilded Pen contributors.
Back row standing : left to right
Joe Naiman, Simone Arias, Marty Eberhardt, Margaret Harmon, Carolyn Jaynes, Mardie Schroeder, Lawrence Carleton, James Horstmann, Barbara Crothers, Fred Crothers, Marcia Buomensiero, John Davis
Second row from back: Left to Right
Rick Lakin, William Barrons, Amy Zajac, Muriel Sandy, Charlotte Thompson, Ken Yaros, Bob Doublebower,
Third row from back: Left to right:
Dave Feldman, Frank Primiano, Sandra Yeaman, Tom Leech, Gered Beeby
Front row: Ruth Leyse-Wallace, Val Zolfaghari
Contributors missing from photo: RJ Black, Joe Bonpensiero, Anne Casey, Al Converse, Margaret Coughlin, Roland Day, Chloe Edge, Richard Lederer, Donald Mayfield, Carl Nelson, Rick Peterson, Ty Piz, Norma Posy, Alan Russell, Wayne Williams, Gary Winters
Order your copy of The Guilded Pen, 2015 edition here.
The other day, I flipped open the Toastmasters Advanced Communications Manual, Public Relations, and found a description of the difference between public relations, advertising, and publicity, quoted below.
Some people confuse public relations with publicity. Public relations refers to a variety of marketing strategies that strengthen a person’s or organization’s credibility, enhance its image, develop goodwill or influence public opinion. Publicity is one of these strategies and it involves media coverage such as news stories, feature articles, radio and television interviews, public appearances and reviews. Other strategies include speeches, speakers bureaus, sponsorships, charitable contributions, special events, newsletters and Web sites.
Public Relations also should not be confused with advertising. You pay for advertising. . .Publicity is free. For example, if a newspaper editor considers your product or service newsworthy and assigns a reporter to write an article about it, the result is public relations. Because you didn’t pay for the article and it written by an independent party, readers consider the article more credible and are more likely to be influenced by it. The risk, however, is that you have no control over the article’s content and whether it is favorable to your product, service or organization, although you certainly can try to influence the reporter.
This, then, is the challenge for the author who doesn’t have a lot of spare cash to pay for advertising. With paid advertising, you control the message, although not all readers will accept it as credible. With all the strategies you put into your marketing plan to garner favorable public opinion through public relations, you may influence the message, but you will not be able to control it, although the third-party source may be accepted as more credible.
Some people may still believe the old bromide, parodied in the image at the top of this post, that any publicity is good publicity, but I doubt that an author whose books have received unfavorable reviews on Amazon, Good Reads, Library Thing, or any other platform where readers share thoughts about the books they read, would agree.
But it is true that any review is publicity – it is free.
And there is one advantage to even unfavorable reviews: the review itself is evidence that someone read the book and felt strongly enough about its content to put together a review. With a name (or at least a screen name) associated. And that offers the beginning of a conversation. Instead of ignoring a bad review, or trying to get it removed, take the opportunity to thank the reviewer and engage in a public and principled conversation about what the reviewer found lacking in the book. It may be that the reviewer doesn’t like or usually read the genre of your book. Or, if your book is non-fiction, it may be that the reviewer has specific information that he or she felt was overlooked or stretched beyond the ability to suspend disbelief. Disagreement, when handled with courtesy and professionalism, can add to your favorability among potential readers.
In another strategy for dealing with bad reviews, Digital Book World recommends authors make lists, one before looking at any reviews – a list of their fears – and three once the reviews begin – a list of what is irrelevant (to be ignored), a list of what brightens the day (to be cherished), a list of the negative comments (to serve as reminders that every author disappoints at least one reader).
The number of reviews is also important. One bad review may feel devastating, but it can be overcome by more good reviews. For strategies to get those good reviews, check out this post in Kimberly Grabas’ blog, Your Writer Platform: How to build your following before the book deal.