The innovations of the internet have made a writing career far more lucrative and valuable than it would have been about 15 years ago. With such a heavy emphasis being placed on text as a means of search engine optimization, the written word has seen a resurgence in worth due to such a high online demand.As a result, today’s independent writer has an incredible opportunity to reach more people than ever before because of the ability to use the internet, not only as a source of employment, but as a high-traffic marketing medium.
There are more online tools and methods available to a writer than ever before, and knowing how to properly use those tools and leverage them for exposure will make a tremendous difference in the amount of eyes that see their material.
In general, writers will have two primary approaches they can utilize to self-promote their work online. Promoting Content via Online MediumsIn this scenario, a writer will use one of the following mediums to promote content that they are working on and build a potential readership, which is invaluable for anyone looking to be published.
-- In this case, you use your blog to promote your material
; it would act as a running commentary on your book, discuss things that pertain to the same topic as that material, and allow you to connect to your audience on a personal level.
● Guest Blogging
-- While you need to avoid pure marketing and salesmanship, guest blogging is a great way to at least mention and link to outside work.
● Social Media
-- In this case, simple marketing and sales pitches are more acceptable; however, you still want to season it with actual value and substance.
These are all mediums you can use to freely promote and market your writing (and eventually, novel), all while generating organic awareness and interest.
Social media is a familiar part of the toolbox and it provides you with an easy way of engaging with people who are interested in what you’re writing about while also giving you the opportunity to promote your content and get more eyes on what you’re doing.
In fact, it is even possible to set up a website
specifically for fielding all of your updates, which can be helpful if you have a particularly active social media presence. Building a Freelance Writing Career
Your second approach is a bit more straightforward, in that you use the internet as a platform for freelance writing and contribution to actual blogs and websites. Instead of writing content for publication outside of those mediums, you’re writing it for them.
A lot of the methodology gets repeated here. Essentially, you are trying to build an online presence
as a reputable and reliable writer.
In this vein, you become a private contractor or independent consultant of sorts, where you offer your service to blogs and websites and, with time, build a solid online resume and repertoire.
Your work will typically land in one of the following places:
● Your own blog
-- Contributing material to your own blog for your loyal readers and RSS subscribers is the most basic form of freelance writing.
● Other people’s blogs
-- As a guest poster, you can easily market your own name and brand by offering up valuable and informative posts for other people’s blogs. It’s a win-win for both parties.
● Business blogs and websites
-- Often times, business blogs and websites will pay for content since their employees are usually busy with other work.
● Online portfolios
-- Once you have a collection of work, setting up an online portfolio is a good way to showcase your work and offer people a quick solution if they want to see writing samples. A Good Time to Start
Everyone’s online marketing strategy is unique to their situation and experience; however, while we might see variation from person to person, the overall strategy and approach remain the same, and will probably stay that way for the foreseeable future.
The internet has made it now a better time than ever to be a writer. Those who feel they have the patience and work ethic to pave their own way as an independent author and contributor have all the tools right at their fingertips.
If you’ve got the drive, now would be a great time to take advantage of it. Marcela De Vivo
is a freelance writer from Los Angeles who covers everything from health & wellness to music, travel, and gaming. After promoting her work and building up her freelance career, she now specializes in social media marketing to help other writers gain exposure.
Today, I've decided to lighten up. I realize that my recent blogs, "Why I Don't Want to Die" could have been upsetting to some and I apologize for that. I truly meant to say that a child today has a great many pitfalls to traverse on his or her road to a full and rewarding life. In other words, we have a lot of work to do - I still have a lot of work to do.
So here is a lighter post from a lighter person: To wit: I have lost 15 lbs in two weeks by eating certified organic, raw vegetables. Yes, folks, the man who once survived on a loaf of bread, a glass of wine and thee beside me has gone vegan. Luckily, so has the person beside me. Eileen has lost as much and is the better for it.
There is other good news: Two (2) publishing companies have agreed to publish my fiction works. Wavelength Publishers has contracted to publish "Mars Quake" about something that appears on the surface of the red planet after a seismic event. Ink Smith Publishing has contracted to publish "Adventures of a Space Bum" about a young woman who travels around the universe in an automated space repair vehicle. Look for the former out in spring and the later out in the following fall.
As for me, my change in lifestyle includes study and search for insight into my spiritual self as well, in order to better equip me for the journey to come. This is Earth, after all. Nobody gets out alive.
Encroaching Government Meddling
In a couple of my novels, I have touched on implants. As I write this, GPS tracking devices are in our cars, in our phones and in our laptops. In 1994, a friend of mine wrote a very intelligent book called Microchipped: How the Education Establishment Took Us Beyond Big Brother. In it she told of the plot to install tracking chips in children. Today, a short decade later, the "School Locator Program" is installing chips in children to locate, track, monitor and spy on them, beginning with Texas schools. It's a trial balloon to gauge the level of public resistance in the wake of shootings in Colorado and Connecticut. Implanted locator chips are being commercially sold for pets and grandparents, to keep them from wandering off. Rich folk are being sold them for their children to protect against kidnapping. The government is putting such chips in combat soldiers for easy identification of bodies. It's a short jump to making them mandatory for every man, woman and child on the planet. If you don't understand how that would be bad, my explanation will not make any sense to you either.
In my present state, at 68, with the doctors hovering to pick over my bones, I still have the potential to cry out against these things. As a child, I would be at their mercy. Therefore, it is not the wrath of a vengeful god that I fear, nor the promise of a heaven or hell choice, but the prospect of birth and all that follows that frightens me. With that in my future, I'm going to hang on as long as possible.
Besides, Star Wars VII is coming out in March of 2015 and I don't want to miss it.
War is an acronym for "We Are Right." Nobody wins a war, there are just lesser losers. The children are the biggest losers in a war. Today, there is war around the globe. Some you hear about and some you don't. If a child survives a war until it is a young adult, the child is called into service, sent into battle and killed. Those who do survive today's wars come out broken, with more labels consisting of labels. PTSD - Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. If a country is going to send it's young men and women off to war to get most of them killed and the rest of them permanently damaged with PTSD, why don't the people of the world get smart and ban war? War is bad for children and other living things.
There used to be hundreds of types of corn. I would go to the county fair and see corn of all colors and sizes. We had yellow corn at the table, but I wanted to taste the other corn, the red corn, the black corn, the golden corn. But now Monsanto has given us one strain of yellow corn. If someone grows something else, Monsanto lets their corn blow into the neighboring fields and then sue them to take over their farms. Then Monsanto becomes larger and grows more yellow corn. There are countries that will not allow genetically altered foods to be grown within their borders. Maybe I'll get born there. That could be nice. Or maybe not.
There are places, I'm sure that there are places in the USA as well as the rest of the world, where children toil in sweat shops, where eleven-year-old children are forced to marry, where slave labor begins early in life. In China, little children work to make electronics that rich, American children simply must have or they throw a fit. In many countries, girls and women are not allowed education. There are places where famine and disease are the rule, not the exception. The millions spent to elect a politician, spent to throw a party for a useless celebrity, spent on mind-altering drugs, would be much better spent wiping out disease, hunger and abuse of people around the world.
Further down-sides to reincarnation:
At thirteen, one's body changes, as the sexual attributes begin to develop. The pressure to engage in sexual activities, as stated above, is high. These days there are free condoms given out at school, classes on sexual education, including alternative lifestyles should I want to try one of those. Even in
elementary school, there are books entitled "Billy has Two Mommies" or "Sally has Two Daddies." The opportunities to stay a child until one is ready to grow up are few and under constant assault. If I'm a kid, I want to stay a kid for a while before I am forced to enter the adult world prematurely.
There are people who listen to me. I appreciate them. It's nice to be listened to, to have your opinion count, to have something to say, even if only on Facebook, and to have someone "like" it. To begin anew with absolutely no credibility is frightening. Not only will I have to learn to talk again, I'll have to wait years until someone will take anything I say seriously. Even if I say something wise, they'll just look at each other and say, "Ain't he the cutest thing?" If I am born a girl, incidentally, it will take twice as long to gain credibility.
In the Sixties, I sang songs of tolerance, marched for civil rights and learned to treat those of other colors and races as equals. I thought we handled all that then. What happened? There is still racial prejudice in this country and in others. I am currently one of the "new minority," a white male. There are people who hate me for being white, for being not Hispanic, for being at all. Suppose I am born black? Will white people hate me? Suppose I am born of a mixed family? Will I spend my growing years trying to find my place in the world? Prejudice is a terrible thing; for children, it is worse.
"That's not fair!" was the battle cry of my growing years. We expected grownups to correct the injustices of the world. Instead, they just said, "The world isn't fair, kid. Get used to it." The world still isn't fair. Congress is costing our soon-to-be-bankrupt country a fortune while doing nothing. Presidents spend hundreds of millions getting elected and spend the next four years campaigning
for the next election. Courts are overloaded, prisons our full and there are two many laws not to break one every time one goes out of the door. How can a child grow up in a world that calls itself intelligent and is still not fair?
(more to come)
Further down-sides to reincarnation:
Every school has one. They make adjudications as to what is going on with you and prescribe drugs to make you less aware of your surroundings. If it is a beautiful spring day and your mind wanders, they will give you a label with letters instead of words. ADD, ADHD and all that nonsense. With the label comes the intensive testing and with the intensive testing comes the prescriptions. Once the cycle begins, it goes to an inevitable conclusion and then you're sunk.
Which brings us to: Child Drugging:
Ritalin is amphetamine, a drug. It changes how you behave. In children, it makes you quiet and manageable. Good for the teacher in the overcrowded classroom, bad for the child. Young adults applying for military service who are found to have a Ritalin history are often refused because they cannot take orders or be trusted with a weapon. What does that do for the child's chances of a CEO position, a teaching credential or public office? Each time a drug is revealed to do more harm than good, it is pulled, repackaged, renamed and put out as a new, improved product. Psychiatrists give drugs to children, often without parental consent. Schools get a stipend for each child on drugs. Every school shooting involved the shooter being on prescription drugs and under the care of a psychiatrist. Do I have to go on?
It is my understanding that there is more peer pressure today than in my school years for a child to engage in harmful activities. The pressure to have premature sex, to take street drugs (or prescription drugs for recreation) or to join gangs and engage in criminal activities is higher today than ever, or so I am lead to believe. Peer pressure was a bitch in the late 40's and 50's; imagine what it is
More drawbacks to reincarnation:
I was horrible to my little sister when she was a baby. I was also pretty intolerable
to my parents. Why they didn't abandon me early in life is a tribute to their
patience. So when I get born, what if there are older brothers and sisters just
waiting to reek retribution on my head? Will I survive long enough to enjoy
brotherly and sisterly love?
It's always best, in my humble but well-traveled opinion, to have two parents. Even
if they both work, as mine did, it's good to have two. I had friends who spent
every third weekend at their dad's two-bedroom apartment in town, putting up
with the girlfriends and boyfriends that followed such breakups. They were
unhappy, spiteful children who knew the world was out to get them.
Egad! What a place to put a child! I either walked to school or took a public bus or
trolly. Today, a yellow bus pulls up and takes you where the school board has
determined you should go. The school bus is said to be a horrible place where
one can lose one's shoes, lunch money, homework or patches of hair. The
classrooms are over-crowded, the studies are more to do with how you feel about
it all rather than how to read, write and cypher. Too many children come out of
public school ill-prepared for higher education or for the workplace. There are
other dangers in public school.
When I was a kid (this time around) I worried about getting beaten up, having my lunch
money stolen or losing teeth, which happened a few times. Today, the kids carry
guns and are on drugs. You can get shot in school, and not from some nut case.
There are neighborhoods where children die regularly from gun and knife wounds
and it is not reported in the news. Anyone larger, meaner or traveling in packs
can be a danger in today's schools. Parents wring their hands but are rendered
powerless by the school board. School boards sit around and vote on which school
bus you will be intimidated on. As a child, just going to school for the first
time at the age of five, or four or - these days - three, I will be at the mercy
of the gangs.
(More to come)
In prior blogs, I stated my belief in reincarnation. While the thought of coming
around again is more attractive than many schools of thought, there are some
drawbacks to the concept. Those drawbacks make me want to hang on to the life I
have. Here are a few more:
One of the primary fears about moving on, once one figures out how to exit, is the
reentry process. First you nearly suffocate, then you get slapped, wrapped up
tight and poked by strangers making gurgling sounds. Some don't survive it.
Others come out in bad shape and are kept alive to suffer through to the next
end. Seems to me that just entering the world is a crap-shoot. How I survived it
in the past is a wonder. But now, the medical profession is so taken with itself
that as a baby, one might get poked and prodded by more than just aggressive
fingers of icky relatives. Once could get needled with all kinds of things that
are not good for living things. Doctors, after all, consider you a body, nothing
more, when the very act of returning in another form proves that you are a
Growing a baby body is a painful process. You poop your pants, spit up your food and can
die in your sleep. Then there's those things breaking through your gums that
hurt. They make special rings for babies to bite on so the teeth come through,
but there is still a lot of pain and crying, compounded by the fact that you
don't have the words to say what's up. The teeth I have now aren't the best, but
at least they're not buried in my gums.
I know a lot now. I have written a few books, a few insightful songs and have made a
few friends stop and think. To start again with nothing but a wide-eyed stare is
daunting. Can't I pack a small bag with some of the knowledge I have gained?
Wouldn't it be helpful to know what to avoid and what to embrace in my new life?
Must I count on my parents knowing things and imparting them? Sometimes that
doesn't happen. It seems such a shame to learn a few things only to start again
with a blank etch-a-sketch of a brain.
My wife is four years younger with lots of life before her. She does not want to
live the rest of her life without me, she wants to keep me around. We have a
bucket list, not so much written down as in our heads, which is an out-point; it
should be written down. We want to go to Tuscany and drink wine in the piazza.
We want to go to Greece, if the economy will still support tourism, and see the
white houses. We want to relax for a change, as we have been going at breakneck
speed our whole lives. For her sake, I don't want to go. It would be rude and
selfish to leave her alone.
"I'm gonna miss it so much!" cried Michael, the Archangel, played by
John Travolta in the movie, "Michael." Of course, in the end, he leaves dancing,
so clearly the departure was not all that bad.
Harmful memories hang themselves on pain and unconsciousness. Loss is also linked to the
concepts of pain and unconsciousness. To be reborn one must first die and that
is not so easy these days; there is usually pain and unconsciousness involved.
There is certainly disagreement on the concept that one should die. You might
not even be successful. People who didn't care a snit about you when you were
alive will bend over backwards to keep you alive when you are hooked up to a
machine and draining all your family's money. That one should say, "I'd like to
go now" is very unpopular.
Going before the body gives out naturally could get some friend or family member in
trouble. It is considered a sin by some and a crime by others. Ending one's life
before one gets too disgusting and wracked with pain is problematic. How to do
it? One could take pills, I suppose, but they're hard to get if you are clearly
going to do yourself in. You could shoot yourself or throw yourself off of a
building, but that wreaks of desperation and a troubled mind.
No, if you are truly in control, on top of things, you just end off your affairs, write
letters to all who need a word upon parting and kiss your loved ones goodbye.
Then you slip out in your sleep, with a smile on your face. My mother went this
way. She didn't write letters or say goodbye, but she did slip off quietly in
her sleep. I picture her going over things in her head as she drifted off to
sleep and, seeing that all was well in hand, kept slipping until she had slipped
away. We should all do as well.
Coming back, then, is not a problem. I've done it for centuries. It's leaving without
it becoming another lump on my time track, filled with pain and unconsciousness.
Slipping away quietly and politely as my mother did, seems the best way. For
that one needs control.
(More to come)
"I don't want to go!" said Doctor Who. He repeated it twice, then began to glow
from his eyes and fingers. He glowed brighter and brighter until he disappeared.
In short order, he reappeared, only as a different actor. The new actor feels
his nose and chin to see what he's like. That's how the Doctor regenerates.
I believe in reincarnation, the concept that when one dies, the soul, spirit,
spark of life, the being himself goes into another body, to be reborn to a new
life. It's a very old and once popular concept that has fallen from modern
thinking of late.
One reason for this change is that there are those with a vested interest, both
religious and medical, in a single-life plan. Religions tell us: "You have only
one life, so you had better live it well or you will not go to the place we have
prescribed for you; and we will tell you what living well consists of. If you
don't adhere to our prescribed teachings, you will go to a place that is
unthinkable. So behave, sit up straight and sing the anthem nice and loud or we
will send you to the other place."
Doctors have an interest in the one-life theory because you will want to stay alive,
because "This is all there is." Therefore you will do anything, pay any amount
and endure any pain to ensure a few more days, weeks or months of precious life.
Lately, the emphasis on medications has grown. "Ask your doctor if Xyzzix is
right for you." They come complete with side effects that strike more fear to
your heart than Steven King and E. A. Poe combined. While the real purpose is to
create life-long paying customers, the stated purpose is to prolong life.
But suppose they are wrong and I am right? Suppose when I die, I will drop by a
hospital, pick up a body and become "Baby Johnson," wrapped in pink or blue
depending? What then? Shouldn't I welcome the opportunity? Wouldn't I look
forward to the joys of being a kid again?
Not so much!
I have written about reincarnation in songs and in stories. Now I am 68 and am facing
doctors who want to cut into me, irradiate me and give me chemical drugs. Anyone
who knows me should not be surprised to hear that I am against such things. For
one thing, they may prolong life, but they make that life not worth living.
So why don't I just cash in my chips? The number one reason is my wife, Eileen, who
does not want to live out the rest of her life without me. That is enough, but I
also have other reasons, just for overkill, as it were.
In the coming days I plan to enumerate the other reasons that I am hanging on for the
longer fight. If you know of any weapons I can add to my arsenal, please let me