Showing posts with label Thanksgiving. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Thanksgiving. Show all posts

Three Ways to Stand Out to Editors


By W. Terry Whalin

In the United States today, we are celebrating Thanksgiving. It's our annual holiday of gathering with family and friends. It's my honor to contribute to this blog and ironically my regular date lands perfectly on this holiday.

It's always appropriate to express gratitude to editors and agents. In this article, I want to highlight three ways for you to stand out. Admittedly editors and agents get a lot of email—hundreds every day. You can ignore email. You can sit on your delete key and toss them in your electronic trash can. I want to address how to stand out in a positive way from the other writers who are trying to get their attention. I've seen many writers stand out in a negative way. They are memorable but not someone one that an agent or editor wants to help get published.

Here's three simple ways make a positive impression:

1. Deliver Good Writing While many writers believe they have sent an interesting and targeted submission. I've often seen poorly crafted stories and not enough energy put into the concept. Good writing will always stand out and a fascinating story captures positive attention and earns a quick response from the editor or agent. Practice your craft in the print magazine world. If you are writing nonfiction, then learn to craft good personal experience stories. If you are writing fiction, then learn the skill of short stories—and get them published. The experience will be valuable and help you stand out in the submission process.

2. Submit Assigned Writing on Deadline or Early. The majority of writers are late with their assignments. If you pay attention to the deadline and deliver excellent writing on time or early, you will stand out because such attention is unusual. It seems like a small detail but it will make a difference in the impression you make with these professionals.

3. Express Gratitude. Whenever anyone does anything, large or small, make sure you express appreciation. We live in a thankless world where few people write handwritten notes. I make a point to continue to send handwritten thank you notes. My handwriting isn't beautiful and I have to work at clear writing but when I send notes, they make a positive impression. Also when I receive thank you notes after a conference or other occasions, it is appreciated.

Working in the publishing community is all about building and maintaining relationships. Whether you are trying to sell your writing to a magazine or sell a book project to a publisher, you need to continually be aware that every time you connect with the editor or agent, you are making an impression. Make sure you stand out in a positive way.

How are you standing out to editors and literary agents? Let me know in the comments below. 

Tweetable:

Use these three ways to stand out to editors and get positive attention. (Click to Tweet)

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W. Terry Whalin is an acquisitions editor at Morgan James Publishing. His work contact information is on the bottom of the second page (follow this link).  One of his books for writers is Jumpstart Your Publishing Dreams, Insider Secrets to Skyrocket Your Success. One of Terry's most popular free ebooks is Straight Talk From the Editor, 18 Keys to a Rejection-Proof Submission. He lives in Colorado and has over 205,000 twitter followers.
 

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Gratitude: it helps you to be a better writer

Photo credit: Infrogmation of New Orleans / Foter / CC BY-SA

Is gratitude scheduled into your calendar?

University of California Davis psychology professor Robert Emmons says:
"Gratitude research is beginning to suggest that feelings of thankfulness have tremendous positive   value in helping people cope with daily problems, especially stress."
Deadlines, rejection letters, revising, and writer's block makes writing a stressful undertaking. We may have learned to develop a positive outlook through prayer, meditation, diet and exercise. But there is something more we can do. We can develop a routine of gratitude.

Quotes to inspire you:

  • No one who achieves success does so without acknowledging the help of others. The wise and confident acknowledge this help with gratitude. - Alfred North Whitehead
  • Rest and be thankful. - William Wordsworth
  • The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts. No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day of thanksgiving.- H. U. Westermayer
  • God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say "thank you?"-William A. Ward
  • He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has. - Epictetus
Scheduling to guide you: 
  • Keep a journal. Research has shown that people who kept a journal of what they were grateful for were optimistic about the future. 
  • Design a mood board. A collage of images you are grateful for is a great visual to boost a healthy outlook. Hang it up by your desk.
  • Designate a time each day. I know someone who set their timer to go off each day to stop what she was doing and be thankful for something. She soon got into a routine.
  • Write a note. Imagine getting an email, a note in the mail, or a text with a few words of gratitude? It would make your day. Why not take a minute to send words of gratitude to someone and make their day?
The great thing about gratitude is when you show gratitude toward someone else, you feel better yourself. Matt Richardson, co-founder of Gramr Gratitude says:
"You can actually be happier than you've ever been if you practice gratitude. It just keeps building you up."
That sounds like a plan!

Thank-you, Karen, for the opportunity to be a part of Writer's On The Move. And thank-you to all the fellow contributors here who I've gotten to know. I have learned so much from everyone.

Happy Thanksgiving!

                                                                        ~~~

 

 After raising and homeschooling her 8 children and teaching art classes for 10 years, Kathy has found time to pursue freelance writing. She enjoys writing magazine articles and more recently had her story, "One of a Kind", published in The Kids' ArkYou can find her passion to bring encouragement and hope to people of all ages at When It Hurts http://kathleenmoulton.com


Thanksgiving in the USA is Here Again

Thanksgiving is this week in the USA. One of our traditions is to give thanks for what we have.

Following is a list of things I am thankful for.

I am thankful for being able to attend writing conferences.
I am thankful for my local writers group.
I am thankful for having enough chocolate to get through whatever it is I am trying to write!

What are you thankful for?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Debbie A. Byrne has a B.S. in Mass Communication with a minor in History.She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and is working on her first children’s book.

Gratitude for Simple Things



The Thanksgiving holiday is a special time of year when we pause in our whirlwind lives to remember what we are grateful for. I do try to think of each day with gratitude, but sometimes we do get caught up in the hurried way we live our lives and we start to see only the negative things that happen.
Sometimes the simplest things are what give me pause, bring me to tears:



  • ·         A spectacular sunset
  • ·         The full moon in a clear sky
  • ·         The warm sunny days and crisp cold nights
  • ·         My cat sleeping in my lap

I consider myself lucky (maybe that’s the wrong word, maybe it’s the recipient of great gifts) for bigger things in my life too:

  • ·         The parents who inspired me to be self-sufficient and independent
  • ·         My close family, including my “in-laws” who I think of as sisters
  • ·         The wonderful teachers who encouraged me to develop my interest in reading and writing
  • ·         The publishers who believed in me and my work and gave my books life.     
  •       My dear husband who always supported my writing dreams without question
And even though I lost my husband this year, his love and support and the memories live on, and I’m able to find solace in simple things.

May you all find gratitude this Thanksgiving.

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A native Montanan, Heidi M. Thomas now lives in North-central Arizona. 
Her first novel, Cowgirl Dreams, is based on her grandmother, the sequel, Follow the Dream,  won the national WILLA Award, and Dare to Dream rounds out the trilogy. In addition a non-fiction book, Cowgirl Up! A History of Rodeo Women has just been released. Heidi has a degree in journalism, a certificate in fiction writing, and is a member of the Independent Editors Guild. She teaches writing, edits, and blogs. 

Gratitude Can Help Make You a Better Writer

It's early evening. I'm sitting here in my favorite brown sweater. It's long enough to wrap around me when I'm cold, it has a hood that is perfect for dodging snowflakes, and a belt (which I never tie) that has been known to get caught in the car door. It's the one I always reach for this time of year. And it's the one I paid less than $5 for on the J.C. Penney clearance rack 8 years ago!

I'm thankful for my sweater. Sometimes it's the little things that give us the most comfort. 

We live in a very busy, rushed world. When I slow down, my mind follows suit. And even if I am thinking over the events of the day, thinking through a problem, or just day dreaming, I have learned to take the time to be thankful. 

Research has shown that gratitude is beneficial for health and well being. Being thankful puts things in perspective.  In my experience, counting my blessings makes me a better person, and therefore, a better writer. It helps bring balance from the concerns, worries, and difficulties we all face. It's a healthy practice and should be regularly scheduled into our lives. 

What better way than to write down what we are thankful for? It may just turn into an article or book to help others.

Need a jump-start? Here are some ideas:

  • Nature. We are surrounded by wonderful sights, sounds, and smells that help us pause and be thankful for the beautiful world we live in. Nature has a calming affect. I write about these things to help my readers to be encouraged. 
  • Family and Friends. Taking the time to remember the people in your life is especially important, especially if they are challenging relationships. Find something about that person you can be thankful for and focus on it. If there is just one person you can be thankful for you are blessed. Don't forget the kindness of strangers!
  • Provision. Do you have a car? A home? Food? All things to be thankful for. One time I was driving my car in the winter and the heat wasn't working. I turned to my son in the front seat and said, "At least we have a car!" Even if you don't have the nicest car, a home too small for your family, or only bread, milk, and eggs on your table - be thankful. It will make you happier!
As you practice gratitude, many things you didn't notice before will soon become important and valued. In turn, your outlook will positively affect your writing business and everything else you do.

How about you? Is there one thing you can be thankful for? Please feel free to leave a comment!



Happy Thanksgiving!


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Kathy Moulton is a published freelance writer. You can find her passion to bring encouragement and hope to people of all ages at When It Hurts -http://kathleenmoulton.com



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