On May 21, 2014, the Authors Alliance will hold a kick-off meeting at the Berkeley Center for New Media. From their announcement:
Authors, construed broadly to include all creators, create for all sorts of reasons. In academia in particular, it is not uncommon to write and create primarily for the specific purpose of being read, seen, and heard.
You will run across varied personalities on your path to negotiating large-quantity sales. Some of these people will have a hidden agenda when dealing openly in front of their colleagues, and they may assume a more confrontational behavior. This may result from a desire to perpetuate -- or establish – a reputation as “playing hardball,” and not compromising easily.
They view a negotiation as a zero-sum pie, i.e. “your gain is my loss.” It’s difficult to work under these conditions because it is not in our best interests to point out another’s irrational bias. Try to manage the tension between cooperative actions needed to create value and competitive ones needed to claim it. In essence, the pie must be both expanded and divided.
Did you know that if you are a professional author, your professional activities can be tax deductible?
The following factors, although not all inclusive, may help you to determine whether your activity is an activity engaged in for profit or a hobby:
Corporate buyers want to solve their problems, not yours. As a consultant, your job is to show them how they can use your content to improve their circumstances in some way. For a marketing director this could be increased sales, revenue or profits. An HR manager may seek a better trained, informed or motivated workforce. Focus on minimizing their troubles as a means to solving your own.
How can you discover their problems? Ask questions about their objectives. What do they want to accomplish with a promotional campaign? What went right (or wrong) with their previous promotional campaigns? One question that can elicit that information is, “If you could wave your magic wand, how would you describe the ultimate sales promotion?”
Running your own informal writing workshop can be a difficult but rewarding experience. It ain’t easy to get a group of people together who are promising writers AND critical readers, who are honest but nurturing in their feedback, who are committed to meeting frequently, and who don’t smell like cheap wine all the time.
But think of the American expats meeting at 27 Rue de Fleurus. Think of the Inklings congregating in the corner of some Oxford Pub. You could be the founder of a similar literary club that makes history! And even if you don’t make history, you’ll be making each other better writers. And THAT would seem to be the true measure of its success.
5 tips to starting a successful writing group:
I’m flawed. You’re flawed. We’re all flawed.
You know the feeling; someone critiques your writing, and you flash them the evil eyes while thinking, “You complete moron! You’ve missed the point of my piece entirely, and of course you did– you’re an idiot and I hate everything you’ve written anyways, so what do you know?”
Hmmm. Maybe they have a point?”
The other day I posted a link to an article from the Poetry Foundation about the worth of MFA programs. While I’ve never been “officially” enrolled in any creative writing program, I did take three MFA workshop classes in poetry as a post baccalaureate at Portland’s lovely State University when my schedule (and $$!!!) allowed.
As distribution manager for Greenleaf Book Group, one of the questions I’m asked most frequently by authors is “How do I get my book in Barnes & Noble or my local grocery store or even my favorite indie bookstore”? It seems like there would be a simple answer, but there are many industry challenges to navigate before a book finds its way onto the shelves of a brick-and-mortar store and I’ll shed some light on those challenges today.