Writing Prompt 113
Research, list, and describe target markets for offline writing.
Today’s writing prompt is part research, part writing. It is intended to motivate nonfiction writers by encouraging them to seek paid opportunities in writing by doing research. The best guide in existence for nonfiction writers is, of course, Writer’s Digest’s Writer’s Market series of books, which are published as new editions each year.
Any resource for writers that claims to offer writing markets is worth a dedicated look. It takes time and effort to read through writer’s markets, understand them, and follow up by reading the periodicals that are looking for writers. Once you manage to identify a few markets that look good to you, list them and briefly describe why you think you qualify to write for those periodicals. This is a good exercise in writing and a great exercise in self discovery.
Education – Quick Tips
In this new education section, I’d like to provide a quick tip to motivate nonfiction writers.
Create a crowdfunding campaign.
Crowdfunding campaigns are generally reserved for large-scale projects to help major causes, such as business start-ups or nonprofit or philanthropic causes. Today, however, any person with a need can create a crowdfunding campaign for just about any reason. To my surprise, I am learning that aspiring book authors can solicit funds from strangers, through crowdfunding, for the purpose of raising funds to pay for the publication and marketing of their book.
Expecting success of a crowdfunding campaign is positive thinking, but not always realistic, as there seem to be many projects to choose from with few to little donors. Experimenting with crowdfunding, however, is still a pretty interesting way of doing indirect marketing of your writing services. Regardless of whether people fund your campaign, your name and writing products are out there, giving you pretty decent exposure on the Internet.
Marketing success in writing
Today’s feature is on aspiring book author Alan Lake.
Alan Lake is a very interesting person. He bills himself as a musician, having played with the likes of Madonna and Bryan Ferry. He is also a chef, claiming to have cooked for celebrities such as Bono, Bruce Springsteen, and Sharon Osbourne. Alan won a garlic cooking competition as part of southern Florida’s Delray Beach Garlic Fest in 2001, 2002, and 2003.
He worked with garlic and loved it so much that he took the garlic to the next level by doing copious research and writing about its origins and uses. He wrote a manuscript titled “The Garlic Manifesto” and is hoping to self-publish his nonfiction cookbook memoir book. Alan created a crowdfunding campaign on PubSlush.com
and is asking his supporters for $20,000 to pay for all of his self-publishing expenses including graphic design (layout), printing, marketing, and public relations.
So what do you think – - should aspiring book authors ask the public to fund a book project such as the one that Alan Lake is working on? Would you contribute funds to support the book project of an aspiring book author whom you don’t know personally? No matter what your answer is, this subject matter of crowdfunding a book project is certainly interesting and worthwhile of discussion!
Marketing success, non-writing
Here is our twelfth feature on Artistic Toy Manufacturing Co. and the wild success of its custom plush and toys.
If there is one thing I love to do, besides writing, of course, is shopping. I love to shop, for food, for clothes, for my girls, whatever. There is a thrill in touching merchandise, smelling it, and testing it out at a store before it surreptitiously lands in my shopping cart. One purchase I made recently made me understandably apprehensive and nervous.
In May 2012, I shopped around and eventually bought a car, but not before being stressed out that my girls would just about demolish every square inch of the dealerships I visited. What could have been different that would have made my purchase easier? Perhaps a custom stuffed plush toy, as Jim Socci suggested.
Jim and Artistic Toy worked with a Honda dealership from Illinois in creating plush bears that were imprinted with the word “Honda” on them. Such a simple idea that proved to be incredibly effective as the Honda dealership explained to Artistic Toy that the car-buying process was a tentative one that involved anxious parents (like me) and very small children (like mine) who constantly had ants in their pants. The solution was to hand out the little stuffed bears to make the children happy and the purchase run smoother!