‘Words Have Power’
We knew that, didn't we? So does Amber Lee Starfire, who elaborates on it at her Writing Through Life blog, in ways I found interesting.
Amber writes and runs courses on the art of memoir, but this blog post applies to any kind of writer. Indeed, it could apply to anyone at all, but she makes the point that, because words have power, we writers have a great responsibility and great opportunity in using them.
How it works
As to the specific ways in which words have power, she quotes a New York Times article on language and gender by Jessica Barnett, as well as ‘George Lakoff’s seminal work, Metaphors We Live By’ – clearly very thoughtful pieces of writing. I found even her brief summaries illuminating.
The Value of Creativity
What’s in it for us
He has recently featured Poets and Storytellers United there, and says he will be featuring our posts regularly on social media. This is particularly welcome news as facebook currently won’t let us link our posts on the grounds that we have ‘breached community standards’. We haven’t of course; we suspect some algorithm has misinterpreted some set of words (no idea what). And there’s no recourse, as facebook does not have human beings receiving complaints! Anthony may well strike the same problems with fb, but will also be promoting our posts on twitter.
He says: ‘This is part of my new project to popularize short form literature on Twitter, etc, through my #PopLitChallenge. I thought some of your participants may fancy a go.’
Check him out. And if you’re on twitter, there is a link to his twitter feed at KEYUDOS.
Do you have a book in you?
Or maybe several already out, at places like Lulu or Amazon? And how can you promote it / them to your fellow members of this community?
In our ‘About this community’ statement, we say: ‘Please keep in mind that we are not a place for advertisement.’ This is largely to discourage the kind of people who ‘hit and run’ by dropping ads for their books (or even other products) in the comments to any post and never coming back to participate in the community. (It happens now and then, despite our veto; we just keep weeding them out.)
How about self-promotion?
This veto also means that we ourselves, the community members, don't spam the opportunities to share poems and stories by posting links to our publications instead.
It’s fine if we mention a new book, as a note, on a piece of writing we're sharing here. It’s also fine if a blog post directs readers to an online journal or anthology where they can see that blogger's poems or stories. It’s not OK if we expect, in good faith, to read a response to a prompt, and instead are presented with ‘buy my book’.
A better way
But, hey – what if we do want to buy each other’s books? As, indeed, we surely would like each other to buy them! It seems only fair that we have the opportunity to support each other if we wish. So, our team has thought up a way to promote ourselves to each other, not once but continually (as needed).
[We don't promise it will generate many sales; after all, we can already read each other’s poems at our respective blogs. On the other hand, we may well have favourite poets here whose work we’d adore to hold in our hands and enjoy as a collection … or give to someone we love as a gift ... or recommend to the world....
And btw, I’ll tell you right now: my bookshelves are overflowing. (This, pictured, is only the one in the bedroom. There are more in the living room, the spare bedroom, and lining the walls of the garage.) Also my eyesight’s not what it once was, so I now love expandable fonts and back-lit screens. For both reasons, the first pre-requisite for me to consider buying your book is that I can get it as an ebook. Just saying.]
So – how are we going to make this possibility available without cluttering up our prompts and comments? After conferring, the team decided the best way is for me to sometimes use my ‘Roving the Web’ feature to direct us to our community members’ publications and where to buy them online.
This means you'll need to let me know.
Whenever you have a new book happening, please contact me at rosemary dot lifemagic at gmail dot com with a brief description of said book and details of where to get it. Please keep descriptions factual ('X's latest poetry collection'; 'A new novel in the Y series'; 'Poems on the theme of Z'). This will be an information service, not a review opportunity; I just don't have the time to spare for that. Hopefully, individuals who go on to read your work after seeing it listed here may like to drop a quick review at appropriate online places such as Amazon or Goodreads, or at their own websites, or as comments at yours.
At this point, as we're just beginning this service, do let me know too about any previous publications still available to buy.
And also …
Please tell me about any other successes you have – such as prizes and awards, inclusion in journals, etc. – if these involve an online link which we could list. Your community would love to rejoice with you. Do feel free to use the Writers’ Pantry to link us to the actual poems in such cases. And you’re definitely allowed to do a bit of bragging at your blog as well!
The nitty-gritty (coming later)
If you'd like to self-publish but don’t know how to go about it – stick around, we’ll have a look at that on a future Wild Friday.
Photo of bookshelf Copyright © Rosemary Nissen-Wade 2019. Not to be used without permission.