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Writing Tip of the Week

Fear, Son of Fear, and Fear Meets the Three Stooges.

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The character Gordon Gekko from the film Wall Street uttered one of moviedom’s most famous lines. “Greed is good.”

I’d like to twist that technique and apply the phrase to something all writers face all the time. “Fear is good.”

Fear of starting the next novel, short story, non-fiction book, report, e-mail or angry letter to that old SOB down at city hall is natural. And it’s a good sign for the writer.

If you’re afraid it’s because you’re challenged.

Challenge is good. It means you have an opportunity to stretch as a writer. It’s a chance to grow, improve your skills, and earn a well-deserved sense of achievement.

Look at it this way: if you don’t feel challenged, if you don’t feel that uncomfortable cold spot in the pit of your stomach it’s because you’re comfortable with the writing ahead. The reason you’re comfortable is that you’ve done it before. Where’s the challenge in that? Where’s the opportunity for growth? Been there. Done that. Bought the t-shirt. Got the mug. Why repeat the process?

I’m not saying that you should feel fear every time you write, but when that cold spot in the old gut does show up - embrace it. That feeling marks the next step and the next improvement in your writing career.

In Up the Organization Robert Townsend reminds us that, “Growth is a by-product of the pursuit of excellence and not itself a worthy goal.” That twinge of fear you feel at the beginning of a new writing project is a sign post: Excellence Ahead.

Pursue.

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Quote of the Week: “A good scare is worth more to a man than good advice.” Edgar Watson Howe

Recommended Reading: A Farewell to Justice by Joan Mellen

Recommended Links:

www.ssa_az.org

www.ssa-vs.org

www.harveystanbrough.com

www.lwsliteraryservices.com

https://beelieveparanormal.wordpress.com/about

Shameless Self Promotion

 

Available for pre-orders in e-book and paperback. Release date: May 8, 2018

Speaking with Spirits of the Old Southwest – Conversations with Miners, Outlaws and Pioneers Who Still Roam Ghost Towns

LEWELLYN

http://www.llewellyn.com/product.php?ean=9780738756745

AMAZON

https://www.amazon.com/Speaking-Spirits-Old-Southwest-Conversations-ebook/dp/B075W1TJN4/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1508072270&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=speaking+with+the+spirits+of+the+old+southwest

 

Check out more of my books at:

https://www.amazon.com/Dan-Baldwin/e/B0080Z24CO

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/666742

 

A Four Knights Press Production

© Dan Baldwin 2017

This blogette may be shared provided there is no charge associated and that the source is credited.

 

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Effective Communications Tip of the Week

A Comment on Puff Pieces

 

Writers who product public relations materials for clients often face the challenge of drafting a news article or feature that has at least a snowball’s chance in hell of passing through the electronic Hades of a news editor’s desk. The editor’s desk/computer is loaded with articles and each one (to him) is of equal news value. Puff Pieces are among the first to make it to the round file or to experience the delete key. Positive Aspect stories at least have a fighting chance of making it in print or on screen.

 

A positive aspect article differs from a puff piece primarily in that the PA is written strictly according to standard journalistic style. It promotes only the positive side of the person or organization; it is a legitimate news story told in the traditional manner.

 

A puff piece jumps from straightforward reporting right into unabashed praise. The writers generally don’t follow an accepted stylebook. They often use first names throughout the piece. Unnecessary and inappropriate adverbs and adjectives are often tossed out like Mardi Gras throws from a parade float.

 

For example, a puff piece might read:

 

"Bob is a terrific boss and we can go in to see him with a problem any time. We think that's really cool."

 

A writer who wants the piece to have a lifespan beyond the editor’s, “Bah Humbug!” will follow appropriate style.

 

"Smith maintains a good rapport with his staff by managing the office with an open door policy."

 

Notice that the puff piece and the positive aspect piece say the same thing. The difference is that the latter will possibly see life in print. The first version will be terminated with extreme prejudice.

 

The difference is mostly a matter of style, although sometimes the puff piece will slip into

outright falsehoods. "Bob supports women's rights in the office place" is pretty hard to believe when everyone in the community knows he refers to his universally buxom female staff as "My little groupies."

 

The biggest problem with a puff piece is that it is so obvious. The editor knows his publication will suffer from a loss of credibility. The writer knows this, too. Sadly, Bob (the swell boss) often doesn’t. Unless his craving for puffery is held in check, ultimately he is the one whose puffed up bubble bursts the loudest.

 

Quote of the Week: “The devil’s boots don’t creak.” Scottish Proverb

Recommended Reading: The Chicago Manual of Style

Recommended Links:

www.ssa_az.org

www.ssa-vs.org

www.harveystanbrough.com

www.lwsliteraryservices.com

https://beelieveparanormal.wordpress.com/about

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 The latest non-fiction work, with Dwight and Rhonda Hull, explores the world of paranormal contact with those who have crossed over - and with many of those who have come back.

The book showcases a new and unique method of paranormal communication and is backed by surprising documentation. Pre-Order today for a May, 2018 release.

http://llewellyn.com/product.php?ean=9780738756745

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/speaking-with-the-spirits-of-the-old-southwest-dan-baldwin/1127149230?ean=9780738756745  

   

NINE REASONS TO HIRE A GHOSTWRITER

One: You have a good book within you. This is the most important factor. I believe everyone has at least one good book within. The numerous challenges you face in getting from the idea to the published book can be mitigated and in some cases even eliminated by working with the right ghostwriter. Whatever your book may be - how-to, management, motivational, memoir, corporate history, rant ‘n rave, or even the great American novel - you can see it in print and a lot sooner than you now believe possible.

Two: You lack the time to write. Some of the people with the most to share are often the same people who just don't have the time to share their gifts, insights and stories. A client once told me, "I can write just about as well as you, but what would take me two years to do, you can complete in half a year." Ghostwriters can provide you with all the time you need to create a top quality and marketable work. It's what we do.

Three: You lack the skill. A lot of successful authors employ ghostwriters for that very reason. The transition from concept to completed manuscript is a complex one requiring a very specific skill set. You can avoid the learning curve by employing someone who has already made the journey.

Four: You think the process is too complicated. Publishing a book for the individual person has never been easier or more affordable r in the history of the world. As an author you have a variety of publishing options readily available, such as traditional agent/publisher, self-publishing, print-on-demand, e-publishing, vanity presses, and combinations of those options. Additionally, the market is loaded with talented writers, artists, book designers and other professionals who are at your service and often at surprisingly affordable rates.

Five: You think you lack the funds. An experienced ghostwriter will work with you to establish a workable budget and will help you stick to it. I work on a pay-as-you-go basis according to a fee established up front. Once you do a little homework, you will be surprised at the amount and quality of professional services at hand at affordable rates.

Six: You're afraid of being ripped off. Protecting your investment and your book is your responsibility. A professional ghostwriter is also dedicated to protecting your property and your rights - all of which should be established up front in a clear and easily understood contract. A good reputation is a valuable commodity in the writing business and ghostwriters live or die by it. We're fiercely protective of our name and that, by definition, means we're fiercely protective of our clients and their works.

Seven: You don't want to put out just another cookie cutter book. Neither does a good ghostwriter. One of my chief goals as a ghostwriter is to make sure my author's book is his/her book and not Dan's version of that book. You are unique and your book should be a unique product. A good ghostwriter wants your manuscript to reflect that unique view.

Eight: You'll become an instant expert. I have a multi-book client who had been trying unsuccessfully for years to get a face-to-face meeting with a major investor. After publishing his book, but before marketing it, he sent a complimentary copy to this investor. Within weeks he got the meeting he'd been wanting. My author told me, "Dan, this book is the best business card I ever had." The fact that he had become a published author established him as an expert and put him well ahead of his competition.

Nine: You lack the gumption. That's all the more reason to contact a professional ghostwriter. You provide the direction, while we do all the heavy lifting.  If you're ready to see that book inside you online and in print, contact a ghostwriter and get started. A good place to begin is baldco@msn.com or 480-807-9682.

 

 

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Isn't It Time To Write Your Book?

 Dan Baldwin 

Author . Co-Author . Ghost Writer

   Motivational . How-To . Management Theories & Techniques . Self- Help . Sales .

Corporate History . Family History . Get It Off Your Chest

   Write That Book and Write It Now!

            Most people have a good book in them, but lack the professional training or time to bring it out. That’s my job. I can take your concepts, experiences, and inspiration to create that book. More important, the manuscript will be your book – guided, refined and polished by your personal vision. I work with major publishers and self-published authors and I have the talent, experience, credentials and drive to help you produce your book.

            Isn’t it time we started writing?

Connect With Dan At baldco@msn.com or www.fourknightspress.com

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