— Jason Lee Norman (@bellyofawhale) February 13, 2014
My mother and fellow writer, Mary Metcalfe, forwarded me this very interesting blog post recently by literary agent Donald Maass. If you’re a fiction writer – aspiring or published – I’d recommend taking a second to read it!
This month in keeping with our look inside publishing, I’m departing from my usual craft advice to give you my view of the new state of the industry.
I don’t see the new shape of things as many do: the twilight of the dinosaurs, the old-thinking Big Five print publishers staggering, falling to their knees and heading for extinction as they’re overwhelmed by a nimble army of small, warm-blooded mammals whose claws are the sharp, smart, flexible tools of electronic publishing. [To read the rest, click here.]
Are you a writer looking to get the word out there about you and your projects? On February 22 I’m doing a one-day course on promotion for writers through the University of Alberta in Edmonton and I’d love for you to attend. The class will be small so we can focus on your questions and concerns. And you don’t have to be computer savvy (I promise I won’t try and make you join Twitter)! It should be a fun and informative day. Feel free to email me questions about the course at email@example.com and I hope to see you there!
To read the course description and register, please click here.
2014 is here and I have a feeling it’s going to be another interesting and exciting year! To kick things off, I submitted my draft of Polar Winds: A Century of Flying the North to my editor over at Dundurn, and we’re on track to release it this fall (stay tuned for updates).
Time to get back into my WWII-era novel, Chasing Skies, that has been on the backburner these past two years… looking forward to reconnecting with Sally, Alex and the crew, and travel back to England vicariously through them – even if it’s at a time of war.
I’m also looking forward to teaching here in Edmonton, giving talks at various conferences, and taking part in great events like the Glass Door Coffee House series. I’ll be reading my poems from the 40 Below anthology on Thursday, January 30 @ 7-9pm along with other talented writers, Dolly Dennis, Robin Young, Jannie Edwards, and Jennifer Quist. We’ll also have music from Trevor Duplessis, and host Theresa Wynn will keep us all in line. It’s free, there’s lots of great food and wine to be had, and it’s a warm and welcoming open mic if you’d like to read, sing, or perform.
Hope to see you soon, and until then – happy researching and writing!
The manuscript of Polar Winds: A Century of Flying the North will soon be with my editor at Dundurn, and between revisions and planning fabulous launch parties across Canada, I’ll be happily teaching a few courses at the U of A Faculty of Extension in early 2014. If you’re in the Edmonton area and interested, please register and c’mon out!
Writing for Magazines (Wednesdays from 5:30-8:30pm, Jan 22-Mar 5).
Learn how to write compelling nonfiction for hungry magazine markets. Topics we’ll address include: types of nonfiction; finding and developing ideas; form, organization, and first drafts; revision strategies and style. We’ll also discuss market research techniques, submission protocols, and ways to make editors take notice. Blogging and social media will be included as a brand-building tool as will best practices of good magazine/newspaper article-writing.
In-class writing exercises and some at-home reading will be required. Throughout the course, you will also be offered feedback towards the development of a publishable magazine story of your own.
*Very excited to be co-teaching this course with my friend and colleague, Caitlin Crawshaw!
Writer Promotion in the Digital Age (Sat. Feb 22 9:30am-4:30pm)
Gone are the days a writer can afford to work in isolation. Now, each author – whether with a traditional publisher or going “Indie” – faces pressure to be their own promoter, online and in real life. Learn to make the best use of precious time and money. Come away knowing: the difference between marketing and promotion; how to identify your promotional personality strengths and challenges; the most important online tools, and one “sin” to avoid for each. You’ll select an online and “analog” tool to immediately integrate into your promotional strategies.