Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Carolyn Howard-Johnson Sharing with Writers

Click here to respond to Carolyn HowardJohnson's Newsletter:

If you prefer to read this letter in its not - so - glorious full
formatted version ( - : copy and paste this URL into your browser:

November 01, 2009

Sharing with Writers
A newsletter that is also a community. Share your ideas. Learn from
theirs! Associated with the multi award - winning series of
HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers,

From the Desks of
Carolyn Howard - Johnson
and Sharing with Writers Subscribers

In the spirit of the advice I give in the Frugal Editor - - that is to
use an extra pair of eyes whenever possible - - this newsletter is
voluntarily copyedited by Mindy Phillips Lawrence ~
~ I also tell writers to be patient with
other writers when they make editing boo - boos. We're all human. This
letter comes out weekly (except when I'm traveling or on deadline) and
it's long!
~ ~ ~:. ~ ~ ~.: ~ ~ ~.: ~ ~ ~:. ~ ~ ~.: ~ ~ ~.: ~ ~ ~:. ~ ~ ~ ~ ~:. ~ ~
~.: ~ ~ ~

Regular Features
~Note from Carolyn
~Letters - to - the - Editor
~Thank Yous (where you also find leads and great resources!)
~Tips and News Galore! (They're scattered, you'll just have to find
~On Poetry
~Author Successes
~Mindy Lawrence's Itty Bitty Column: “Musical Chairs”
~Carolyn's Appearances and Teaching
~Wordstuff ™
This Issue
~ Features: Yukky Words, Style Choices and Doing It Your Way
~ Feature: Q&A a la Ann Landers: The Best Book Signing Problem of
~Feature: Borrowing a Marketing Technique from Newspapers

Note: You may have better luck with the URLs in this newsletter if you
copy and paste. The reason that I leave them long rather than use
hyperlinks is because this letter is available in plain text in your e -
mail window as well as by .pdf.
~ ~ ~:. ~ ~ ~.: ~ ~ ~.: ~ ~ ~:. ~ ~ ~.: ~ ~ ~.: ~ ~ ~:. ~ ~ ~ ~ ~:. ~ ~
~.: ~ ~ ~

Note from Carolyn

Dear Subscribers:

I want to talk about contest snobbery and antisnobbery snobbery today.

Two of my books were named USA Book News finalists today. A Retailer's
Guide to In - Store Promotions and my
poetry chapbook on motherhood, Those
events caused quite a nice conversation about awards between me and a
couple of you Sharing with Writers subscribers.

In fact, I talk to people on both sides of the snobbery issue and to some
who were trying to make up their mind which side of the fence they should
sit on.
There is a lot of this uncertainty going around in the literary world. I
often hear people disdain this contest or that printing press or even that
book because it doesn't fit with their literary standards. I might—on the
very same day—hear authors pooh - poohing poetry or literary works as
being elitist or no fun or hard to read or dull.

Here's my stance on both kinds of snobbery. They are both forms of
bigotry. That is labeling something as less than. One could write a book
on the reasons people do this. To inflate their own worth, deflate the
worth of others, because they are fearful of not fitting with one group or
another, to protect what they see as their favored position. You can
probably think of others. But today, let's address contest bigotry because
that's where this discussion started.

In the past few years as books have procreated like little piglets, we
must have some way to help ours stand out for the general reader. Reread
the section on contests in your Frugal Book Promoter
( for details if need be.

But here's where I stand. If one must choose between letting readers know
you have a quality product and caving to those who think nothing counts
but the Pulitzer and Booker, I'll choose my reader every time.
Do know that people have been paying to enter contests for eons. In fact,
many of the finest review journals are nearly fully financed by donations,
grants and, yes, contest monies and that isn't a new way of doing it,
either. There is no reason to waste money entering any of them if you
haven't studied the guidelines and aren't confident that you have a
quality book and have checked with friends to be sure something is not on
the up and up. But do be careful. Just because a contest does not meet
your literary needs does not make it a scam.

Once you have determined yourself a match for a contest, go for it. Once
you win place or show, do all you can to let the world know about it; send
out media releases, let your relatives know, and give everyone the link
for buying your book! On CreateSpace or Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

I think Maggie and I have written a chapbook of poetry that will be a
perfect stocking stuffer to send Mom and a perfect greeting - card
envelope - sized gift to send to other mothers in your life including
those of the boomer and/or sandwich generations. Especially those. ( - :
And that my retail book will benefit those with brick and mortar or online
stores. And I'm happy to shout out that they placed this year.

Winners are people who think they are winners. I feel sorry for the Oscar
nominees who take on a loser mentality when they don't take home a statue.
In fact, sometimes I wonder about their capacity for a little something
called gratitude.

Happy Writing, Promoting and Editing, too.
Carolyn Howard - Johnson

PS: Something else I'm proud of. I finally got a shopping cart so that
people can order signed books directly from me. I used a f r ^ ^ service
from Google to make it. Of course, Google will charge a percentage on the
sales made there but there are no other fees. Find my cart at Also know that I have a special price
between now and Nov 15 to coach anyone else who wants to do something
similar on their own site through the process. Just let me know of your
interest at

There is a page of contests on the Resource for Writers page on my Web
Follow the links on that page to other valuable lists on my site, too.

Twitter Tip: Twitter is testing a new feature among a select few of its
tweeters. I am one of them. It is a little like Facebook's group model and
I believe it will help Tweeters target their messages only to those who
would be interested in them. I'll keep you up to date. My first group is
simply "Tweeters Who Help Authors." Kind of a broad group. I may have to
narrow that somewhat to groups like "Literary Agents" or "Book Marketers."

The Green New Media Life Expos ( )
offer Green Book Pavilions this fall at expos at the Ontario Convention
Center, Ontario, CA; Cal Expo Fairgrounds in Sacramento; and the Pomona
Fairgrounds, Pomona, CA. An author's package for each expo is available to
help authors promote themselves and their books. Contact Gerry Fisher at or at 702 467 9411.

Help with Facebook

Did You Know Facebook Is Limiting Your Access? ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Facebook has changed the face of its message page. It is including only
250 and of them at one time and that is ticking off lots of Facebookers.
If you're one of them, you don't have to sit still for this. Go to your
HOME page. Find "news feed" or "live feed" at the top of the page. If it
says "news feed" toggle it to read "live feed." Then scroll to the bottom,
click "Edit Options" A popup will appear that lets you have a "News Feed
Settings" change that numbers from 250 to the maximum 5,000.

If that doesn't work try this:

a) Go to the live feed
b) Find some sort of update you are not interested in receiving (Mafia
Wars, Farmville, or whatever).
c) Place your mouse over that posting and look at the right of that box...
the word "hide" and a drop down arrow should appear.
d) Click on the drop down arrow

Facebooker MaAnna Stephenson also offered this suggestion: “I've made
different lists and place my friends where it's appropriate, such as
family, writing buddies, science buddies, and so on. Makes it very easy to
follow everyone centered on a general theme." She says that way you are
less likely to hit one of Facebook's volume limits and you can target your
messages to specific audiences better, too.

Please paste this little blurb - - perhaps with a little endorsement - -
in your newsletter or Web site: To subscribe to Sharing with Writers send
an e - mail with SUBSCRIBE in the subject line to or go
to for an auto subscribe box. Let me know you
did it. I will be able to do something similar for you on my Resources for
Readers page at

Asking a favor: The famous Writer's Digest wants your nominations for next
year's list of 101 Best Websites for Writers. If you enjoy this
newsletter, its associated blogs and Web site, please consider nominating
any one or all of the following:
Blogs for Writers:

The Resources for Writer pages at

To nominate Sharing with Writers; The Frugal, Smart and Tuned - In Editor;
or HowToDoItFrugally Web site for 2010, please send your nomination to: with "101 Websites" in the subject line. January 1,
2010 is the deadline.

My blog, War, Peace, Tolerance and Our Soldiers is where I get to nag and
rag and try to make things better for our troops and maybe for the world.
It includes a segment of frugal ways to help our troops and veterans. I'd
love to have you leave a comment.

Author Successes
(The author successes segment is here to praise, laud and encourage but
the success of one author may give you a resource for another. So applaud,
certainly, but also learn.)

Awards for Travel Writer . . . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Along the Templar Trail, has just taken home the gold for 2009 Best Travel
Book in the prestigious Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Competition
(Society of American Travel Writers Foundation). It is about the author's
harrowing 2500 - mile peace walk from France to Jerusalem,

It was also named a Book of the Year Finalist by ForeWord Magazine.

More information is available at

My Choices Make Me Who I Am Wins USA Book News ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ …award in
the children's education category. It is written by husband - and - wife
team David & Mutiya Vision and illustrated by Ignacio Alcantara. It
highlights a young boy who becomes aware of the pitfalls in making wrong
choices, and the rewards in making the right ones. As parents of seven
children, The Visions understand the value in exposing children to a wide
range of social lessons. This early on investment can contribute to
producing more socially conscious and empathetic leaders of tomorrow.
Their books prepare children for the ever changing, fast paced world they
will one day inherit. ~ My Choices Make Me Who I Am (ISBN - 13: 978 - 0 -
9659538 - 2 - 5; ISBN - 10: 0 - 9659538 - 2 - 3; $17.00 US). For
additional information, please visit

=================================================== Book Proposal Help: Ph
yllis Zimbler Miller and I ran a fun Tweetchat on book proposals. She
edited it for easier reading and posted it for those who missed it. There
is lots of info in it on shopping your book to agents, too. Remember, you
read tweet chats like you follow blogs. From the bottom up. Another book proposal help is "The
Great First Impression Book Proposal: Everything You Need To Know To Sell
Your Book in 20 Minutes or Less" for 49 cents at


National Day on Writing Contributions . . . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
My writing friend Lillian at sent this to me and I
found it a worthwhile national project. Please explore. I did start a
local gallery and if that turns out, I'll let you know about it later. But
you may want to start one of your own now: )
Let me know what you think!

On Thursday, October 8, the U.S. Senate passed
a resolution declaring October 20 as the
National Day on Writing!
In the National Gallery of Writing we’re collecting all kinds of writing
from people from all walks of life—people just like you. Submit stories,
poems, recipes, emails, blogs, even audio, video, and artwork.

Want more information on contributing to the National Gallery, which will
open to the world on October 20? Learn more about submitting your writing
and about starting a gallery
html ).
For those having trouble getting started, NCTE has created
Tips for Writers (
and offered sample writings (
Established by NCTE, the National Gallery and the National Day on Writing.

New Radio Show Possibilities . . . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ . . . After a four year run
with her first radio show, Calling All Authors, Valerie Connelly invites
you to listen to her very first new radio program HOT BOOKS - - -
GREAT AUTHORS which is launching on November 2nd. Valerie
is kicking it up a notch, with a brisk format and more incisive Q & A.
This show will of course be fun and information rich, but the pace will be
faster and more exciting.

Valerie's first guest is acclaimed international best - selling author, pm
terrell. We'll talk about her newest book River Passage. This intensely
vivid historical novel is set in the mid 1700's and details the ill -
fated journey of settlers led by John Donelson from Virginia to Fort
Nashborough (now Nashville).

If you're an interested published author, request a booking on the show
for the 2010 programs, by going to and clicking on
the fields and click the SEND button. Valerie will get back with you
quickly. Do tune in to listen to HOT BOOKS - - - GREAT AUTHORS with
Valerie Connelly at a time that suits your schedule! Starting on Monday,
November 2, 2009 and available all week on

Take Care of Writers Block . . . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
. . . Take the Write Nonfiction in November challenge! Go to and start writing and reading.
During November nonfiction writers get a chance to hone their skills and
complete a nonfiction project during the annual Write Nonfiction in
November challenge. Now in its third year, Write Nonfiction in November
(WNFiN) isn't a contest in the traditional sense. It's a personal
challenge to nonfiction writers to simply start and finish a book,
article, essay, query letter, e - book, booklet, proposal, or any other
work or nonfiction in 30 days. And while they do so, a blog provides
nonfiction writing, editing, promotion, marketing, and publishing
information to help them sell themselves and their writing.

Blog posts, which can be read at, initially were written by
WNFiN founder Nina Amir, an author, journalist, nonfiction
editor/coach/consultant, but last year she brought in expert guest
bloggers to provide additional information. Again this year she will
provide a few posts of her own and introductions to posts written by
expert guest bloggers - - 28 in all! Additionally, via blog comments and
a new forum WNFiN provides nonfiction writers with a way to comment on and
chat about their writing experiences during November. Post also can be
read in Amir's blog at, where Write Nonfiction in November
was featured in's Best Blog series for 12 days in November
2008. Although WNFiN is a November event, the blog is kept "alive" all
year long with one post per month.

New Promo Op + F r ^ ^ Tips ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ The book marketing
company Miller Mosaic, LLC announces the introduction of power marketing.
They put the power of marketing into the hands of authors by combining
traditional marketing principles and Internet marketing strategies.
Until recently, the power of marketing was in the hands of publishers and
authors who could afford print advertising campaigns and book tours. Now
authors and publishing companies can level the playing field.
To download the free report “Power Marketing’s Top 3 Internet Marketing
Tips” and for more information on how Miller Mosaic’s power marketing can
help your book marketing, go to .

Yvonne Perry Asks for Help/Offers Partnerships ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Yvonne Perry wants to network with about 20 blog owners to help get the
word out about her children’s book of holistic (body, mind, spirit)
stories ( - children.html). Each book
teaches skills such as following inner guidance, being true to one’s self,
or overcoming fear. Modeled after the lessons Yvonne's grandson, Sidney,
these are great for the classroom, young readers, or toddlers being
nurtured at home.

Yvonne would love to make a guest appearance on blogs that have to do with
parenting, grand - parenting, children, family, spirituality, inner
guidance, communicating with angels, healing, diversity, death of a pet,
or recycling. If you would be willing to participate on a date between
Nov. 26 and Dec. 10, please let her know or phone 615 - 415 - 9861. She will
help you promote your blog in the process!

===================================================== So you got As in
English. You know grammar and spelling. That's great but an editor of you
those skills alone doth not make. An editor knows formatting, front and
back matter, indexing, structure, the elements of fiction and on and on.
But mostly she'll see your manuscript in a fresh, new light. Learn how to
hire a great editor and learn to be a better partner for any author, awful
to superb, in The Frugal Editor.

Q&A a la Ann Landers

The Best Book Signing Problem of All ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
QUESTION: Hi Carolyn. I loved your advice about bookstore signings and
being prepared with your own set up items. Now I can't remember if I read
that in your book or if I read it in your newsletter, but at any rate, it
is great advice! I have three book stores in one city who have offered to
do a book signing for me, which is perfect timing with my new book coming
out soon!! They are all within 5 minutes of each other though. One is a
pet store, one is a Christian bookstore and one is a regular book store
(which I did at a signing at last year and did well). Do you have any
suggestions of strategizing that ~Barbara Techel, author of the multi -
award winning, Frankie, the Walk 'N Roll Dog. (Frankie named Mascot of
Disabled Pets Day!!; learn more about the
book at

ANSWER: What a great problem to have, Barbara.

Of course, you will want to promote each of the events. That means each
will certainly know about the other. I would advise candor in any case.
I'd go to your first choice store and ask. But I wouldn't leave my
question open ended. Let's say you approach the bookstore first. Keep in
mind the needs of each retailer is you frame your question. I'd say
something like "I have some other offers for book signings. None of them
are in direct competition to you for none are bookstores. You are my first
choice and I'm wondering if you'd like me to space the signings by 30 days
or so. Keep in mind that I plan to do lots of promotion for you."

Notice that I didn't ask if they wanted an exclusive. I would not give
them that much power with my opening pitch. If they should bring up the
subject of an exclusive, negotiate. "For how long?" is a fair question.
It is patently unfair for them to want an exclusive for a year or forever.
Thirty to 60 days should be enough. If they do, however, then you'll want
to adjust your plans according to what you think is best for your book and
your audience.

Then you repeat this process with your next retailer. You are in a unique
position because you book has not yet been published. That gives you
plenty of time to play with the dates and still have a signing at all
three while your book is still a "fresh release."

I'm glad that The Frugal Book Promoter and Sharing with Writers newsletter
have been helpful to you. If you don't have The Frugal Editor, you might
consider it. The chapters on writing query letters will be uniquely
helpful to you as you begin to query for more and more feature stories,
signings and radio gigs. Best, CHJ

===================================================== F r ^ ^ Audio
Learning: Recently Yvonne Perry, owner of WritersintheSky Creative
Services, and I chatted about editing, everything from em dashes to why
what works on the Web but doesn't work for you book's manuscript. Yvonne
offers you the f r ^ ^ podcast on her blog: . Other new
ones for your Frugal and F r ^ ^ enjoyment include:
Raleigh Pinskey and I chat about hiring a publicist and the joy of
writing: - R - Pinskey
Cheryl Antier and I talk promotion, memoir, process at - antier.
Irene Watson and Victor R. Volkman's at Author Access and I chat on
several f r ^ ^ podcasts including a new one on writing book proposals at - howard - johnson
I read poetry with Lillian Brummet as host at - Howard -
Johnson - She - Wore - Emerald - Then and with Kim McMillon as host at
where we talk storing poetry in bras and nude cover pictures.
Just the FAQs MaAnna Stephenson and I recorded a couple of different
podcasts. One on marketing fiction (Part II). Find them at
Borrowing a Marketing Device from the Newspaper Industry . . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Designing Above The Fold For Blogs, E - mail, And More
By Tony Eldridge

Have you heard the term "Above The Fold" before? It comes from the
newspaper industry. Newspapers are displayed for sale by being folded in
half with only the top half of the front page visible. Publishers learned
quickly that your most compelling headlines must be visible, above the
fold, for newspapers to sell. Imagine, the content of an entire paper
hinging on what's put on that relatively small piece of printable real
Marketing mediums that you use may also have an "Above The Fold" area. E -
mails, Web sites and blogs are the first mediums that come to mind, but
any marketing message that you create for public consumption can easily
fall into this category. Since blogs, Web sites and e - mails are not
physically folded, where is the "Above The Fold" area? Read the rest of
this article, "below the fold," at Tony Eldridge's Marketing Tips for
Authors blog at - above - fold -
for - blogs - e - mail.html

No part of this newsletter is paid advertising. If you would like to
advertise to subscribers, display ads are available at at less
per year than most sites charge for a single month. Find classified there,

Tip: Want to know more about getting into the greeting card market? This
Author Access podcast with Kate Harper will help:

Subscribers who have websites or newsletters of their own may be
in the F r ^^ Articles 4 Readers and Writers on my site, . I try to add new articles to it frequently.
If you don't see what you need for your blog or newsletter, just ask.

Tip: When you are through reading your newspaper, is it full of holes? If
not you may forget ideas that have occurred to you or information you want
to include in your next book. When I don’t have scissors, I just tear them
out and stow them until I have a minute to file them somewhere in my

Fun and F r ~ ~: If you purchased the Frugal Book Promoter or the Frugal
Editor, I'd love you to review it on Amazon or Make it simple;
just tell what part of it you found most valuable. If you do, send me the
review link (URL) and I will send you a handout from one of my UCLA
classes. As a thank you, of course.

On Poetry
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

This is a running feature for the poets among us and those who would like
to try writing poetry but feel, well, inadequate about the writing or the
promotion. Please send in your poetry tips and resources for this section.

Last week I listed the winner of the poetry contest I ran for Lillian
Brummet's book, Toward Understanding ( To follow up I
asked Lillian to contribute a couple of poems with a winter theme to this
newsletter because we are moving into that season very quickly. You know,
so you could get an idea of the book.
Lillian says, "In these poems you can see that I have used the winter
theme to mean more than just weather...the words also represent emotions,
situations and scenes that are frozen in my memories. The first poem,
"Frozen in Time," was written when I was rescued from an abusive situation
and put in a "safe place" for a while - - with a bunch of strangers for
nearly 2 years. At this time I used to pretend I was adopted and was quite
suicidal due to the abuse. The friend I refer to here was an adopted child
with issues of her own and we used to pretend we could be sisters adopted
to different families. Denise and I had a strong bond while I was there,
one that I've never forgotten.

"The second submission is a play on words...the injuries from a car
accident are clear, but also the inner emotions happening at the time are
intertwined in the poem.

Denise, you were a friend of mine
Right from the start, we were one in our hearts,
Way back then.
I remember, you and I, in the deep, deep snow,
Desperately searching the sky for UFOs.
Anything to make our lives exciting.
Always feeling alone, ‘til our friendship came along.
Then one day I was called back home,
Returning to a broken, but safe home;
Was not sure if I liked it better this way.
Felt terribly alone - a stranger there.
And I think of you, every couple of years - I do;
Of our friendship - you and I - frozen in time.

There’s a change of weather coming
I can feel it in my bones.
This muffled white serenity,
Is settling my soul.
There’s a change of weather coming
And it’s aiming at my bones.
The ache of pressure separating
Is muffled by a coat of snow.
There’s a change of weather coming
A cold, cold rush of anticipation,
And the icy winds’ sensation,
Burns into the marrow of my bones.

Lillian blogs at:

Endorsement: I wanted to tell you how your workshops, reading your
newsletter, and just chatting with you has been a great help to me. I have
a background in marketing from the fashion world and even though it has
helped me get my foot in the door, I honestly have to say that after
getting to know you, reading your books, and everything else I just said
has truly helped me put Stories for Children Magazine on the map. ~ VS
Grenier, Founder and Editor - in - Chief Stories for Children Magazine.

Twitter Tip: A new Penn State study reported that 20% of all tweets are
brand related. If that's so, why not your brand, that is, your author name
or book title? It also shows that tweets are far more suited to book
promotion that telling people what you ate for breakfast.

A general marketing rule is that a product must be seen seven times before
it is purchased. That is just as true for books (because they are
products, like it or not!). Let people see that book cover image! To do
that, you are invited to advertise as a site sponsor at for only $25 to $30 a year. Yep, the frugal way!
Click on the Advertising tab at the top of the page or contact me
personally at

Author Successes

(The author successes segment is here to praise, laud and encourage but
the success of one author may give you a resource for another. So,
applaud, certainly. But also learn.)

Client Ralph Cinque Wins USA Book News Award . . . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ . . . in the field of comics/graphics for his book, Vinland. It is
about Leif Eriksson and the Vikings who reached America in the year 1000.
Blending real history with classic storytelling, Vinland is a rip -
roaring tale of high adventure beautifully illustrated by 10 artists from
4 countries. Order it for the young person in your life at This is Vinland's second award.

Audio divas bring you audios on many aspects of building a writing career:
www.tri - Titles include:
Contest Facts: How to Add “Award - winning” to Your Name;
Do It Yourself Indexing: The Way to Sell Your Book to Libraries, Schools
and Anyone Else That Buys Nonfiction;
Fury and Destruction: How to Use Violence Effectively in Your Writing
And more.

Tip: Read. Read current events so you'll know how to angle your promotion
to the media. And read up on the publishing industry so you'll know how to
plan your writing/publishing career. You don't want to be at the mercy of
what people tell you, do you? I like the magazine Book Business. Check it
out at

I highly recommend Jozette Aaron's f r ^ ^ DeSilva's News for writers: not just because I write a column for her.

Tip: It pays to read down in this newsletter. Eve LaSalle Caram, a fellow
UCLA instructor, and I are planning a Roman Retreat for Writers at a
townhouse near the Trevi fountain. We now have the details to share.
You'll want to see what we're doing and there is only room for eight. So
read up on it at and let us know if you are

Yes, I do consult. I tailor my fees to your needs - - everything from
coaching to full edits (sorry no partial edits) to hour consultations to
help you with your marketing campaign or your path to publishing.

Subscriber Tip: Have Keynote Will Travel. Most conferences bring in ‘big’
writers for keynotes. But those ‘big’ writers are sometimes a bit pressed
for time and might have conflicting schedules. Knowing this, I never go to
a conference without one of my own keynote speeches tucked away somewhere.
You never know when someone isn't going to show up. But I am already there
and ready to jump in on cue. I also bring materials for other sessions or
workshops (appropriate to the type of conference) in case a presenter isn’
t able to make it. I know the work that goes into running a conference
and I know the importance of the attendees getting their money's worth.
Being ready, willing and able (and speech in hand) to help out at the last
minute not only helps the conference organizers, the attendees, but my own
career as well. And that’s something people remember.
- - - - -
Randall Platt writes fiction for adults and young adults and those who don
’t own up to being either. See what and why at
Platt’s new young adult novel, HELLIE JONDOE, is out November 1st from
Texas Tech University Press. “…this is solid historical fiction with a
scrappy heroine who is genuinely tough and a true survivor. Irrepressible
and irreverent.” ~ Kirkus Reviews


Thank Yous

Thanks to Karen Cioffi . . .
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
. . . founder of WritersOntheMove, for the high praise she rained on Lea
Schizas' and my Muse Online Conference and her urging people to register
early. Lea now has registration for October 2010. Find Karen's blog at
http://vbt - - over - for -
this - year - muse - online.html

Thanks to Mary - Jo Holmes . . .
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
. . . for including my release on Maggie Ball's and my recent award for
our She Wore Emerald Then: Reflections on Motherhood
( Find it on her World Publishing News
page on her Web site:
http://www.mary - jo - Obviously, a page
like this can be a valuable resource for people in the publishing world.

Thanks to Online Universities . . .
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
. . . for listing my New Book Review blog
( in their "101 Book Blogs You Need to
Read" ( - book - blogs -
you - need - to - read/). If my subscribers aren't utilizing this neat f r
^ ^ benefit, they should be!

If you're starting your own blog or want to market the one you have or
focus it better here’s a f r ^^ chapter from Phyllis Zimbler Miller’s and
my coming book. Download it now at


Yukky Words, Style Choices and Doing It Your Way ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ By Carolyn
Howard - Johnson

My idol on grammar and style June Casagrande is at it again.

In her syndicated column, "A Word Please," she puts people on notice that
she thinks a word like "incentivized" is pretty yukky, but goes on to say
that it is still a word. In fact, two of the three dictionaries she
checked listed it as a word. She points out that similar words like
"prioritize" were once considered yukky, too. Who knew?

Often our attitudes about words are a matter of taste. I don't like words
like "signage" or "usage" much either. Generally, the words without the
"age" prefixes would do just as well without them. That makes them feel
sort of wordy or redundant or... me. But that's my
taste. That doesn't make them right or wrong.

Our language changes. We're the ones who make it change. Further, as a
poet, I value that we can make up our own words. Oh, OK. Sometimes as a
nonfiction writer I value it, too.

I like the word "snoof" and it certainly isn't in my dictionary. You can
probably guess what it means, even out of context. In my poems, I often
push words together to make one. Both the English and the German languages
do this a lot. The Germans do it even more than we do. I love the word
"fingerhut" in German, as an example. It means "thimble" but literally, it
means "finger hat."

Heck, I reason, English is a Germanic language so don't even try to tell
me I can't do it. I can. And I will. And you can, too.

An example of when I've done it with nonfiction is "frontmatter." Word
gives it a read squiggle and it isn't in any dictionary I checked as a
single word. But it refers to the front pages in a book and, taken as a
whole, those pages are a kind of entity unto themselves. (Ditto for
"backmatter.") So, in The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to
Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success (, I
chose to shove them together. Once one decides to do that kind of thing,
though, one needs to stick with it. It becomes a style choice for that
particular book. So I hope that those of you with copies of The Frugal
Editor enjoy the segments on editing frontmatter and backmatter and have
figured out what I'm doing with those words.

Some of you in possession of The Frugal Editor may also be saying, "Yeah,
but in that book you said to stick with the rules and the most common
style choices. You said that when we are writing query letters and book
proposals and manuscripts, and are looking for a publisher or an agent, we
won't want to give them any reason to think we don't know what we're
doing. You said . . ."

Yep, in that book I advise zero tolerance. There's a time in life to be
adventurous and times not to. When in doubt, and when your writing career
is at stake, best to play it safe.

I now have a social media page on my Website. I’m including the link so
you can use it as a sample if you don’t have a similar page on your own
Web site. And yes, this can work for you even if you only network on one
site. Be sure to give your visitors an idea of how they will benefit if
they join you.

Tip: I've been warning against posting information on the social networks
that's too personal or too mundane...mostly in the interest of better
marketing. But here are some big reasons (from AOL) why you need to watch
what you say. To read it, copy and paste this into your browser: - social - media - can -
be - costly - to - your/721020?icid=main|htmlws - main -
n|dl3|link3| -
social - media - can - be - costly - to - your%2F721020

This is an example of one of my Twitters: "FrugalBookPromo New trend?
Borders will buy nonreturnable books from HarperStudio in return for a
deeper discount." My tweets cover everything from news to more tips and
resources, all in 140 characters or less. If you don’t want to tweet, at
least follow me. Make a profile page and invite me at

Tip: Creative writers (novelists, short story writers, poets, memoirists)
have such a hard time with promotion. By following my trek and tips with
Just the FAQS blogger, artist, author, and podcaster MaAnna Stephenson,
you'll get a good idea of how to analyze your own work for more effective

The New Book Review is a f r ^ ^ service of this newsletter. It allows
authors to get more exposure from their favorite review and reviewers a
chance to have more readers see their reviews - - with links, of course.
Please check the guidelines on the blog site at

An Itty - Bitty Column on Writing

Musical Chairs
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ By Mindy Phillips Lawrence

If you go through a newly published Writers’ Market and verify the
contacts there, you’ll discover that many have moved somewhere else since
its publication, both editors and publishing heads alike. The question is
why does someone resign from Random House and go to Henry Holt and Company
as Stephen Rubin did? The article in the link below suggests it was due to
the repositioning of a company. I propose that a great deal of it might be
money, not the yearning for a more literary product written by thinking
writers. I could be wrong.

Both book publishing personnel and talented writers get lured elsewhere on
a regular basis (both Donna Tartt and Tom Wolfe left their companies for
Little, Brown in 2008) but sometimes it seems that, like all businesses,
publishers dig for the largest gold nuggets they can find and leave
smaller shiny sparkles behind in the slush pile. In other words, while
most of us scream and pray for publication, the industry plays musical
chairs with the elite.

If you want to know who is going where and what is being bought, the best
way I know of to keep up with the industry is to take at least the free
version of Publishers’ Marketplace. The paid version is $20 a month but
tells about the movers and shakers and who is playing musical chairs.
Media Bistro is also a good place to track the business of writing (and,
of course, pay attention to everything Carolyn Howard - Johnson). If you
want to get published, you need to know where the industry is headed, who’
s headed where and follow the yellow - brick road to their door.


“Da Vinci Code” Publisher Changes Jobs

Why'd Tom Wolfe Flip to Little, Brown?

Donna Tartt Leaves Knopf: Can Publishing Be Saved?

Media Bistro

Association of American Publishers

The Book Deal: An Inside Look at Publishing
- - - - - - -
~ Mindy Phillips Lawrence,, is the author of
the poetry collections One Blue Star and Above and Below. She is co -
author of The Complete Writer and a publicist and literary agent. She is
in the process of researching a novel titled Alone is Where We Begin. She
is a publicist for the Military Writers Society of America, Blogging at:
Her specialty is helping writers with their media releases. Reach her at

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Carolyn's Appearances and Teaching

Just the FAQs MaAnna Stephenson and I chatted again on her permanent
podcast series. Go to to learn
more. This was my second time with MaAnna. We feel we really get tons of
information out to writers in these shows - - thus it is well worthwhile
to do more than one.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Muse Online Writers Conference cosponsored by Lea Schizas and Carolyn
Howard - Johnson is now taking reservations for the f r ^ ^ event in
October of 2010.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Carolyn Howard–Johnson discusses Mormon life and history and how she
melded the two into her gripping book, This is the Place, on the History
Czar, aka Paul Bruno, on March 5, 2010, at 9:00 am Pacific at The History Czar is the Internet’s
premier talk radio program covering all areas of history. You'll find the
interview at after
March 5. Listen to current History Czar shows at or at the show’s blog at Ask to be on Paul's notification list for
free podcasts.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Carolyn Howard - Johnson offers two seminars at the f r ^ ^ Catholic
Writers Conference on Monday March 1. Your Query Letters Perfected:
Straight from the Mouths of Literary Agents is at 9 and a casual chat,
Twitter: How Writers Can Make It Work for Them, is at 10. The conference
is online from Feb 26 to March 5 and is open to everyone.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Carolyn Howard Johnson, author of A Retailer’s Guide to Frugal In - Store
Promotions: How To Increase Profits and Spit in the Eyes of Economic
Downturns with Thrifty Events and Sales Techniques, will make a guest
appearance on Paul Bruno's Career Czar® radio program. We'll talk making
retailing work in a down economy and how authors can make their case to
retailers to let them boost profits with a book signing on December 17,
2010 at 10:00 am Pacific at You can also
listen at www.alltalkradio./careerczar/career121710.mp3.In the meantime,
listen to his other shows at or at the
show's blog at Ask to be on Paul's
notification list for free podcasts.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

New! Carolyn Howard - Johnson will be a featured speaker at the Wisconsin
Regional Writers Association Conference in Madison, Wisconsin, in the fall
of 2010. Find information on that at This active group
invites writers from everywhere to join. Find their blog at

Sign up to receive a copy of my Sharing with Writers blog in your e - mail
box. It is a focused blog on all things related to writing and publishing.
Go to Sign up in the left hand
column. Find related resources by scrolling to the bottom of the blog.

Subscriber Sharing with Subscribers

Patricia Dischler Shares Editing Experience . . . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~She says, "My newest book, Teaching the 3 Cs: Creativity, Curiosity &
Courtesy is being released November 1. I worked with a fantastic
copyeditor on this book - - John Vias. ( He not only
brought a technical excellence to the book, but also worked hard to retain
my voice and also went above and beyond by doing research to verify the
accuracy of some topics and research in the book. For example, the book is
filled with activities for parents and teachers on bringing these “3 Cs”
into a child’s day, and one of the activities involved working with worms.
John spent time researching the habits of worms to verify what motivated a
worm to behave in the way described in the experiment! He brought a depth
to the technical quality of the book that really brought it to a new
level. I highly recommend him to any writer looking for a copyeditor! He
is a freelancer that my publisher hired, and I will certainly be
suggesting him to future publishers I work with. You can contact him at:
- - - - - - Patricia Dischler is the author of several books for
early childhood professionals, Teaching the 3 Cs can be found on her
website at: She is an author of From Babysitter
to Business Owner, Because I Loved You, The Patty Cake Kids & The Lost
Imagination Cap, 101 Tips & Tricks for Child Care Professionals and
speaker. She is also the recipient of the 2007 WFCCA Governor's Award

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Wordstuff ™

Something to Make Writers Smile
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

(Definitions in the next few newsletters are from You might have some favorite
neologisms, metaphors or similes that make you smile. If so, please

OPPORTUNIST: A person who starts taking a bath if he accidentally falls
into a river.


Essential Book and Record Keeping:

This is a place to share with others and learn from others.

Although I do attempt to verify information used within this newsletter's
pages, Sharing with Writers does not guarantee entities or information.
Subscribers should research resources.

To submit information articles, tips or other information, e - mail
Carolyn at Please put "Submission: Sharing with Writers"
in the subject line.

If you do not care to receive this newsletter, send an e - mail to with "Unsubscribe” in the subject line, but please,
please don't tell me you've given up writing or promoting!

To subscribe to Sharing with Writers send an e - mail with "Subscribe" in
the subject line to::

Please pass this newsletter to friends or e - groups. It needn't be pasted
in its complete form, but please credit this newsletter, and the
individual contributors with anything you snip and paste.

Ordering Information:
Frugal Book Promoter: How to Do What Your Publisher Won't
The e - book at

The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and
Ensure Success

The Great First Impression Book Proposal: Everything You Need To Know
About Selling Your Book in 20 Minutes or Less - First - Impression - Book -

A Retailer’s Guide to Frugal In - Store Promotions: How To Increase
Profits and Spit in the Eyes of Economic Downturns with Thrifty Events and
Sales Techniques

To learn more about This Is the Place,
Harkening: A Collection of Stories Remembered, Tracings, and She Wore
Emerald Then www.carolynhoward -

She Wore Emerald Then: Reflections on Motherhood, a chapbook of poetry
coauthored with Magdalena Ball.

Tracings, a chapbook of poetry (Finishing Line Press)

Contact Information
http://carolynhoward - (literary) (all things about writing)

Blogs:, a blog on all things
publishing, all things grammatical and
ungrammatical, a blog focused on YOUR reviews, a blog focused on editing,
formatting and craft, War. Peace. Tolerance. And Our
Soldiers., a blog where you can learn
to get some mojo behind your own booth by learning from the successes and
mistakes of others.

Tweeting at:

Visit Carolyn HowardJohnson at:

Click here to unsubscribe:

Powered by AuthorsDen
Connie Gotsch Host Write On Four Corners KSJE FM, Farmington NM Author two award winning novels Snap Me a Future and A Mouthful of Shell available

Always in Print ‘Cuz They’re Print on Demand!

And now out! Belle’s Star,’ a youth novel from Artemesia Press at and, and through your local book store.

1 comment:

Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

Thank you for being so good about posting my Sharing with Writers newsleter, Connie. I'm going to start letting my writer audience know that when they contribute to the newsletter, they might get published by your famouse Imagination on Board blog!

Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Blogging writing tips at