Posts Tagged ‘memoir’

 

Coach Teresa here . . . I received an email from Local Hero/San Bruno Patch columnist / Bardi Rosman Koodrin (“The Healing Chronicles”), informing me that Matt Cranford, Fair & Festival Event Manager at the San Mateo County Fair, would like to know how I implemented the writing contest (THE IMMIGRANT EXPERIENCE: NOVEL, MEMOIR, OR SHORT STORY Sponsored by Teresa LeYung-Ryan, author of  Love Made of Heart and Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days: Attract Agents, Editors, Publishers, Readers, and Media Attention NOW ) earlier this year and what were its achievements.

Well, the magnificent forum was already in place–the San Mateo County Fair.  In October 2010 when Bardi Rosman Koodrin, Literary Director for the Fine Arts Department of San Mateo County Fair, invited me to create and sponsor a writing contest that would carry a theme close to my heart, I said “Yes.”

I had been a judge for other writing contests before; this was a chance to create a category!

Thanks to Bardi and the other sponsors who had participated in the previous year, my being “the new kid on the block” was an easy job in terms of writing the “ad” for my contest.

In my professional life, I wear 3 hats–an author, a manuscript consultant, and a writing career coach.  Under all those hats and behind my fifty-plus years is also a protagonist who lived/is living the immigrant experience.

What do the Immigrant Experience Writing Contest and a Main Character’s / Hero’s Journey Have In Common? They are all stories about a protagonist leaving or having left a familiar place for a strange new world and how she/he is transformed.

So, immediately after receiving the hardcopy and the electronic version of the San Mateo County Fair 2011 catalog, I began publicizing not only my contest but also all the writing contests under the auspices of the San Mateo County Fair Literary Arts Department.  Then I linked my role in the contest to my role in other causes as well as the roles of my colleagues who were promoting causes close to their hearts. Immigrants. Literacy. Libraries.  Heroes. Wisdom. Mental Health. Mothers and daughters.

Fast forward . . . after I read all the entries, I asked writing mentor Mary E. Knippel to read and rate them too.  We agreed that while all the entries had distinct voices and compelling themes, one entry was exceptional.

Here’s the excerpt (from the first-place winner “My Chinese-American Experience” by Patricia Tsang) that hooked me:

As with most Chinese families, the patriarch, my paternal grandfather, was responsible for giving Chinese names to his grandchildren.  My eldest brother was named Forever Bright; my second brother was named Forever Clear.  Because my grandfather died before I was born, I was destined to be Forever Nameless . . . .

 

Patricia Tsang first place winner in 2011 Immigrant Experience Writing Contest sponsored by Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan

Brava to Patricia Tsang!

What was my reward to sponsor the contest? The creation of THE IMMIGRANT EXPERIENCE writing contest gave me a fresh way to celebrate immigrants and descendants of immigrants.

At this time, I wish to say again “Thank you, English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) teachers Victor Turks, Miriam Queen, Patricia Costello and your wonderful students at City College of San Francisco, for having read Love Made of Heart.” http://www.lovemadeofheart.com/The-Immigrant-Experience.html

Thank you, Bardi Rosman Koodrin, Literary Director for the Fine Arts Department!

Thank you, Matt Cranford, Fair & Festival Event Manager!

Sincerely,

Teresa LeYung-Ryan says: “Reach out, not stress out, when pursuing your dreams!”

Writing Career Coach/Manuscript Consultant

author of Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days: Attract Agents, Editors, Publishers, Readers, and Media Attention NOW (print edition & eBook edition)
Author of Love Made of Heart (inspires adult children of mentally ill parents to speak openly about the stigmas and find resources for their families)

Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan helps fiction and nonfiction writers build their platforms and fanbases before and after publication--photo by MKWL

 

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Below are the links to my blog posts demonstrating how I broadcast the writing contests and the fair:

June 18, 2011 blog post:

Coach Teresa, how do I build fame as a writer?

Writing Career Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan here to say: “Use what you know to build fame. Use your three intertwining circles. Be yourself. Have fun.”

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/coach-teresa-how-do-i-build-fame-as-a-writer/

 

June 15, 2011 blog post:

What Do Dr. Andy, Poetry, Technology, Bardi Rosman Koodrin, San Mateo County Fair, Oakland Libraries, and Coach Teresa Have In Common?

Promoting literacy, literary arts and underdogs (a.k.a. libraries) . . .

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/what-does-dr-andy-poetry-technology-bardi-rosman-koodrin-san-mateo-county-fair-oakland-libraries-and-coach-teresa-have-in-common/

 

June 10, 2011 blog post:

Congratulations to the Writers Who Entered The Immigrant Experience Writing Contest

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/congratulations-to-the-writers-who-entered-the-immigrant-experience-writing-contest/

Dear Bardi Rosman Koodrin, Sue Barizon, Elliotte Mao,

Bardi had invited me to attend the award ceremony on June 11, 2011 (San Mateo County Fair Literary Arts writing contests). I had wanted so much to be there, to thank everyone in the SMCF offices and the writers who entered the contest I sponsored  – “The Immigrant Experience”

A previous commitment prevents me from being there with you on June 11th.

Could you  3 wonderful hearts Bardi, Elliotte, Sue (Sue, I read what you said about Bardi in The Patch) please print the attachment and bring it to the June 11 ceremony and one of you read it for me?

 

May 12, 2011

Where Do We Find Heroes? They Show Up–Young, Middle-Aged–What They Do–All Inspirational

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/where-do-we-find-heroes-they-show-up-young-or-middle-aged-what-they-do-all-inspirational/

 

April 8, 2011

Writing Contest, Immigrant Experience, Asian Heritage Street Celebration 2011, Wisdom Has a Voice Anthology, Mothers and Daughters, Mental Health

Writing Career Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan here, looking forward to four related events/projects.

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/writing-contest-immigrant-experience-asian-heritage-street-celebration-2011-wisdom-has-a-voice-anthology-mothers-and-daughters/

 

April 5, 2011

Our 5th Annual Local Heroes have been selected and it’s time to celebrate them!

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/5th-annual-local-heroes-have-been-selected-and-its-time-to-celebrate-them/

 

March 15, 2011

General Rules for 2011 Writing Contests from San Mateo County Fair Literary Arts Dept.

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/general-rules-for-2011-writing-contests-from-san-mateo-county-fair-literary-arts-dept/

 

March 13, 2011

Is There a Writing Contest for Novels, Memoirs, Short Stories that Invites the Theme of the Immigrant Experience?

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/is-there-a-writing-contest-for-novels-memoirs-short-stories-that-invites-the-theme-of-the-immigrant-experience/

October 18, 2011

Something fun going on right now.  A chance to help drive traffic between your site, my site, beloved teacher Martha Alderson’s (of Blockbuster Plots Pure & Simple fame) and her publisher’s. Martha’s new book:   The Plot Whisperer: Secrets of Story Structure Any Writer Can Master

You’ve heard of authors going on book tours?  These days, authors go on blog tours too! Tonight Martha will be at Capitola Book Café, but, DURING THE DAY October 18, 2011, she’ll be touring here at my blog!!!  So, say hello to Martha, ask her a question about your plotline if you like… by submitting a comment to this post.  How to do this?  Follow instructions below photo of Martha.  Be sure to key in your URL to broadcast yourselves. I will conduct a drawing by the end of the week and one of you hardworking writers will win Martha’s new book.

Beloved Martha aka the Plot Whisperer! :) Thank you so much for gracing my blog today. I’ve been having so much fun inviting writers to join us today. I’m serving cyberspace green tea and brown rice toast with butter. :) I know you’ll be at Capitola Book Cafe tonight (in body), but, for the next few hours, we get to have you here!!!! Sincerely, Writing Career Coach Teresa

 

Writers, You go ahead and . . .

  • Click on the blue header (title bar) of this post
  • Scroll down until you see boxes and fill in the boxes (you do need an email address to submit questions/comments; if you have a website/blog, do promote it  by keying in the address)
  • After you fill in the boxes, you might want to keep a copy of your question/comment before clicking the  “submit comment” button.

If Martha can’t get to all the submissions on this blog today, I’ll keep track of your submissions and notify Martha so that she can respond within this week. On October 22, 2011 I will put your names in a drawing to win a copy of Martha’s new book!  The winner will get an email from me (at which time you can give me your shipping address).

I am so excited about Martha’s new book; I am a better manuscript consultant for having studied it.

And, Martha’s examples of Energetic Markers have given me the sparks to re-plot and rewrite my second novel.  If not for Martha’s teachings, my first novel Love Made of Heart wouldn’t be where she is today–in libraries; archived at the San Francisco History Center; chosen by teachers in colleges and universities as required reading; attracting a steady flow of readers/fans; being my passport to speak out for those who cannot speak for themselves. Because I write about sobering issues (mental illness, stigmas, second-hand violence, physical abuse), my weaving the thematic threads and using the energetic markers to knot the threads result in delivery of a compelling story.  Plot Whisperer Martha, I humbly thank you!

 

This is the 5-star review I wrote on Amazon:

The Plot Whisperer is Martha Alderson is Obi-Wan Kenobi of Story-Plotlines

Whether you’re writing your first book or your tenth, you deserve tools to make your story engaging, from first page to last. Also you deserve to gain such tools from a seasoned teacher who genuinely cares about helping authors. In The Plot Whisperer, Martha Alderson (of Blockbuster Plots Pure & Simple fame) shows you how to create a sensational tri-level plotline that carries thematic significance. Obi-wan Kenobi showed Luke Skywalker how to trust The Force; Plot Whisperer shows us (writers & editors) how to grasp Energetic Markers. Alderson says: “Like signposts, Energetic Markers identify four major turning points in every story.”

In every story—be it a novel, memoir, biography, screenplay, essay, or picture book.

I am so excited about this book–for my clients–for myself. I recommend that you gift yourself The Plot Whisperer if:

* You have a story in your heart and want help in seeing the big picture
* You were on a roll writing the first half of your book, but lost energy or feeling overwhelmed in the middle
* You have the first draft or the umpteenth draft of the entire project; and you’re asking yourself “Do I really have a memorable page-turner?”
* You’re ready to pitch to agents or publishers, and, you want that last litmus test

This empowering book helps you acquire secrets of story-structure and gain personal energy in order to survive and thrive the writing journey. The Plot Whisperer gives you hope–after all, aren’t you the protagonist too? May the Energetic Markers be with you!

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Guess what?  Also, I use Martha’s plot methods for my prescriptive nonfiction (how-to books).  Build and sustain page-turning-energy for any genre.

Also visit The Plot Whisperer’s blog – what treasures!

Remember to click on the blue header (title bar) of this post to introduce yourselves to The Plot Whisperer.

You can get Martha’s book for yourself and your dear writing buddies by asking  your favorite bookseller, going to her publisher Adams Media, or from Amazon.  And, when you write reviews on Amazon and other sites, you’re helping yourself build  your platform and fanbase.

“Reach out, not stress out, when pursuing your dreams!”
Sincerely,

Teresa LeYung-Ryan

Writing Career Coach/Manuscript Consultant

author of Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days: Attract Agents, Editors, Publishers, Readers, and Media Attention NOW (print edition & eBook edition)
Author of Love Made of Heart (inspires adult children of mentally ill parents to speak openly about the stigmas and find resources for their families)

Lynn Scott, the author of the memoir A Joyful Encounter: My Mother, My Alzheimer Clients, and Me, says: “My book is not about the disease, but about the spirit that exists in us all as long as we live. I led my clients in singing the old familiar songs (“Take Me Out to The Ballgame,” “As Time Goes By,” “I Love You Truly”), and I reveled in the love I received and gave.”

I met Lynn Scott over ten years ago when she received writing awards from the California Writers Club and the Jack London Writers Conference. Her fiction and nonfiction are most engaging.  When she asked me to join her critique group, I said “Yes!” Judith Marshall and Marcia Naomi Berger were the other members. More about those two authors in future posts.

What is Lynn up to these days? She’s being an inspiration as always!

Visit Lynn Scott’s website to find out how [singing the old familiar American songs; turning grief and loss into catalysts for the next creative step; Boston Women’s Health Collective; a unique set of unlikely healers] all relate to this wise author/editor.

Sincerely,

Teresa LeYung-Ryan, writing career coach, manuscript consultant, and

author of Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days: Attract Agents, Editors, Publishers, Readers, and Media Attention NOW and Love Made of Heart

Coach Teresa’s YouTube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/teresaleyung

May is Personal History Month


AMY GORMAN – Guided Autobiography class

Saturday May 22, 2010
PORTLAND, OREGON
Elders in Action and the Geezer gallery presents:
Grand Works Northwest Art Festival
~celebrating creativity in aging~
Amy Gorman offers:
Workshop in Creative Aging with the film, “Still Kicking”
The Mark Building, 1119 SW Park Ave, Portland, OR
www.eldersinaction.org
CONTACT: Brenda Morgan

Go to Amy Gorman’s website for other programs. She is the author of book Aging Artfully — about the twelve women aged 85-105 who inspired her work. It’s also about promoting positive healthy aging for the general public, and for advocating involvement with the creative arts in retirement years.

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Do you know about NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MEMOIR WRITERS?

Post your comment to NAMW founder Linda Joy Myers’s question: Why should I write my memoir?

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Saturday May 21, 2011 Asian Heritage Street Celebration in San Francisco, CA

Teresa LeYung Ryan will be with fellow authors Margie Yee Webb, Dr. Patricia Tsang, Lloyd Lofthouse at the California Writers Club booth at Asian Heritage Street Celebration “AHSC” on May 21, 2011.  Teresa uses her book Love Made of Heart to honor the Chinese immigrant experience and to inspire adult-children of mentally-ill parents to speak openly about the stigmas and gain resources for their families.

As a writing career coach, Teresa uses her workbook Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days to help fiction and nonfiction authors attract agents, publishers, readers, and media attention before and after publication.

Teresa LeYung is the sponsor of “THE IMMIGRANT EXPERIENCE: NOVEL, MEMOIR, OR SHORT STORY” Writing Contest—entries must be received by 7:00 pm, Friday, April 29, 2011 or postmarked by April 25th, 2011. Winners’ names will be displayed at the June 11-19, 2011 San Mateo County Fair Literary Arts Department.

Cheers from Writing Career Coach Teresa

 

This blog post is to encourage my clients and all the writers who are on their umpteenth rewrites.

When you’re writing a novel, a memoir, or any lengthy story, keeping track of the elements (plotlines, character arcs, archetypes, themes, hooks, foreshadows, metaphors, dialogue, front story, back story, internal monologue, exposition, irony) becomes a monumental task.

My analogy:  The elements in your story make up the pieces of a ten-thousand-piece puzzle.  Revising a piece of the puzzle could mean adjusting all the other pieces, especially when you’ve been rewriting and rewriting. Has your overall puzzle become a fuzzy picture?

Here’s my advice: Work in sections. Start with the first quarter of your story. Print your pages and read them out loud, chapter by chapter.  As you read, take notes; use color coding to track each element.  Example:  you might use yellow highlight to track your “hooks.”  Whatever method you choose to track, ask yourself these questions:  What’s my intent to introduce this hook?  Am I going to keep the reader engaged by re-baiting this hook in successive chapters?  At what point will I satisfy the reader by releasing the hook (delivering the “aha” moment)?

Happy rewriting and tracking!

I salute you!

Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan

author / manuscript consultant / writing career coach

author of Love Made of Heart (the story that inspires adult-children of mentally-ill parents to speak openly about the stigmas and to gain resources for their families)

author of Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days: Attract Agents, Editors, Publishers, Readers, and Media Attention NOW

http://writingcoachteresa.com

Writing Contest, Immigrant Experience, Asian Heritage Street Celebration 2011, Wisdom Has a Voice Anthology, Mothers and Daughters, Mental Health

Writing Career Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan here, looking forward to four related events/projects.

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Thanks to Bardi Rosman Koodrin’s encouragement, I’m sponsoring a writing contest through the San Mateo County Fair Literary Arts Dept.

DIVISION 342 – THE IMMIGRANT EXPERIENCE: NOVEL, MEMOIR, OR SHORT STORY Writing Contest
Sponsored by Teresa LeYung Ryan, author of  Love Made of Heart (the story that inspires daughters and mothers to speak from their hearts)

Contest entries must be received by 7:00 pm, Friday, April 29, 2011 or postmarked by April 25th, 2011

http://www.sanmateocountyfair.com/competitive-exhibits/departments/literary-arts

After you go to above link, look at left side of the webpage and click on [ Entry Book Pages ] for general rules.

http://www.sanmateocountyfair.com/pdf/guide_book/creative_arts.pdf

Scroll down to page 66 for details of  THE IMMIGRANT EXPERIENCE: NOVEL, MEMOIR, OR SHORT STORY writing contest.

http://lovemadeofheart.com

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Wisdom Has a Voice: Every Daughter’s Memories of Mother

This groundbreaking anthology, to be released October 2011, will include 25 true and compelling stories about mothers (or mother figures) that express the wisdom shared or learned from a particular experience with each woman.   http://wisdomhasavoice.com

Editor-in-Chief Kate Farrell has asked me, Teresa LeYung Ryan, to write advance praise; the other two members of the editorial team are JC Miller and Ana Manwaring; they are only weeks away from completing final edits. I so look forward to reading stories written by women representing each continent. Kate, I’m honored.

I’m a fan of Kate Farrell’s literary works. Take a look at her young-adult novel Girl In the Mirror

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Saturday, May 21, 2011 Asian Heritage Street Celebration (AHSC), organized by the AsianWeek Foundation

Two years ago author Margie Yee Webb helped me reconnect with the Asian-American community by inviting me to exhibit my book Love Made of Heart at the Asian Heritage Street Celebration (AHSC). Thank you, Margie!

This year, Margie Yee Webb (author of Cat Mulan’s Mindful Musings), Lloyd Lofthouse (author of My Splendid Concubine), Patricia Tsang, M.D. (author of Optimal Healing: A Guide to Traditional Chinese Medicine) and yours truly Teresa LeYung Ryan (author of Love Made of Heart and Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days) will share a booth.  Please stop by the California Writers Club booth and say hello if you’re going to the Asian Heritage Street Celebration

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May is National Mental Health Month in the United States of America.

Thank you to mental health professionals and advocates and organizations including National Alliance on Mental Illness NAMI, Stamp Out Stigma (founded by Carmen Lee), and BringChange2Mind (created by Glenn Close, the Child and Adolescent Bipolar Foundation CABF, Fountain House, and Garen and Shari Staglin of International Mental Health Research Organization IMHRO.

BringChange2Mind Walks with NAMI BringChange2Mind is forming NAMIWalks teams across the country, and a portion of the funds they raise will benefit their mission to combat the stigma associated with mental illness via a national communications campaign.

Twelve million children and adolescents suffer from diagnosable mental health disorders.

1 in 6 adults and almost 1 in 10 children suffer from a diagnosable mental illness. Yet, for many, the stigma associated with the illness, can be as great a challenge as the disease itself. This is where the misconceptions stop. This is where bias comes to an end. This is where we change lives. Because this is where we Bring Change 2 Mind.   The video  BC2M Nami Walks 2010 is at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=it2S0ja2GlU

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“My beautiful mom suffered mental illness and its stigmas all her life. I celebrate National Mental Health Month, Mother’s Day, and all mental health advocates.  Mom, I celebrate you!”

Sincerely,

Teresa LeYung Ryan

I invite everyone referred to in this post (especially the authors who have been coached by yours truly,  22-Day Platform-Building Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan) to introduce yourselves by submitting a comment to this post. To do that, click on the blue title bar of this post, fill in the boxes, then press the [ submit comment ] button.  I cheer for you.

22-Day Platform-Building Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan helps authors with their pitches at "Speed Dating with Agents & Acquisition Editors" at WNBA's signature event

22-Day Platform-Building Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan helps authors with their pitches at "Speed Dating with Agents & Acquisition Editors" at WNBA's signature event

Andria Wagner
Barbara Brunetti
Belinda “Bee” Hylinski
Brittany Pettibone
Nicole Pettibone
Danny Garon
Diana Franco
Jennifer Hewitt
Joan Steidinger
Kimber Simpkins
Rasa Gustaitis
Ronnie Lovler

How to Pitch a Novel, Memoir, Narrative Nonfiction, or How-To Book to Agents and Acquisition Editors

Saturday March 26, 2011

This morning colleague Jane Glendinning and I had a chance to catch up since October last year when I met the delightful writers (and saw Sarah Clark!) at California Writers Club Berkeley Branch.

Jane and I had shared  an adventure when Oakland public libraries were in danger of severe budget cuts.  This morning 7:40am our walk from BART Embarcadero station to Sinbad’s Restaurant was another adventure in San Francisco.  Rain. Puddles.  We were on our way to help authors pitch their projects at the WNBA signature event “Meet the Agents & Acquisition Editors”

WNBA executive board and committee members at Meet the Agents 2011 March 26

The reward was working with fellow members at Women’s National Book Association. Jane Glendinning and Birgit Soyka helped Meet-the-Agents Event Chair Judith Marshall and  Chapter President Lynn Henriksen set up while Treasurer Christopher Payne and beloved Vicki Weiland greeted attendees at registration.  VP Kate Britton had worked miracles pulling online registration data.  Mary Jo McConahay took photos (We are so happy for Mary Jo. Two years ago at this same event, Mary Jo met agent Andy Ross.  Her book, Maya Roads, will be published on August 1, 2011.)

Teresa LeYung Ryan & Judith Marshall  cheer for Mary Jo McConahay (middle)

Teresa LeYung Ryan & Judith Marshall cheer for Mary Jo McConahay (middle)

Tanya Egan Gibson, Mary E. Knippel and yours truly Teresa LeYung Ryan helped authors fine-tune their pitches.

Karen Folger Jacobs & Diane LeBow I always get a kick seeing you two power-women.

Talking Tagline Coach Elisa Southard couldn’t be there because she was at the Bay Area Travel Writing planning retreat. Diane LeBow also headed to that meeting after the pitch fest.

Mathilde Schmidt and Carla Danziger – great seeing you both.   I met new member Janine Kovac.  Welcome aboard!

Valerie Mihalache, it was wonderful seeing you.

The 11 agents/acquisition editors/publishers included WNBA members Elizabeth Pomada and Michael Larsen (who are co-founders of San Francisco Writers Conference and Writing for Change Conference), Laurie McLean, Jennifer Joseph, Amy Burkhardt, Andy Ross, Brooke Warner, Georgia Hughes, Gordon Warnock, Jeanette Perez, and Peter Beren!Zoe Fitzgerald Carter with Lynn Henriksen+Judith Marshall+Mary Knippel--photo by Mary Jo McConahay 2011-03-26

Zoe Fitzgerald Carter, author of Imperfect Endings, gifted us with a candid talk about her publishing journal, the folks who helped her share her remarkable story with readers, and what she’s working on now.

Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan and Agent Laurie McLean

Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan and Agent Laurie McLean

Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days: Attract Agents, Editors, Publishers, Readers, and Media Attention NOW is available through Amazon.  Read success stories (on Amazon) from writers who have finished the 22-day workbook I created to help fiction and nonfiction authors gain a competitive edge.  Whether you want to be your own publisher or sell rights to another publisher, attract readers and more readers now!  http://writingcoachteresa.com

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/is-there-a-book-to-help-a-writer-build-platform-and-fanbase/

Build Your Writer's Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days

“Make Every Word Count When Pitching to Agents or Acquisition Editors”
by Writing Career Coach Teresa

You have spent months, perhaps years, writing and rewriting your project/work.  And, you’ve decided to pursue either an agent (who earns his/her commission when he/she sells a client’s work to a publishing house) or an acquisition editor (whose job is to buy authors’ works for the publishing house he/she works for). Let’s say you’ve done your homework and have compiled a list of agents or acquisition editors who specialize in the kind of project (commodity) you wish to sell.

An agent or acquisition editor receives hundreds of pitches/query letters each week.  What can you do to catch these folks’ attention?  Use the right bait.  Make every word count.

Whether you’re pitching in person, over the telephone, through an E-Mail, or by old-fashion mail, keep this in mind—the pitch (bait) has three components:
•    who needs your project
•    the unique qualities about your commodity
•    why you are the perfect author for this work

Here are 4 examples:

Genre: Self Help / Relationship / Marriage

The 50% and 60% divorce rates, for first and second marriages respectively, are a wake-up call for the United States 55.2 million married couples.

Through my book, I empower couples to get the marriage they’ve always wanted.

The Marriage Meeting Program: 45 Minutes a Week to Guarantee the Long Term Relationship You’ve Always Wanted shows how to conduct a weekly meeting that increases intimacy, romance, teamwork, and smoother conflict resolution.

A proactive, preventive approach is crucial. Regardless of how good a relationship is, there is always a need to keep it on track and room for it to grow. The Marriage Meeting Program’s step-by-step approach makes it easy to conduct the meetings. Follow-up studies show a 20 to 80 percent increase in marital happiness for couples who implement the program.

I am Marcia Naomi Berger, a psychotherapist, writer, speaker, workshop leader, and instructor of a class for therapists and counselors at the University of California Berkeley Extension. http://www.marriagemaven.com

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Genre: Memoir

There are more than 38-million boom-generation women in this country.  Through my book, I show middle-aged women how to cope with family and social pressures while dealing with their own mortality issues.

My memoir, Oldham Street, is about my journey from east coast to west bearing the pain of a son in prison, the long slow death of my father, the end of my counseling career and a ten-year relationship.  I knocked on a lemon-colored door on a short block in San Francisco.  In the next twelve years, the woman who opened that door, along with the other quirky characters in the neighborhood, inadvertently joined me in a process that brought me home to myself and into a comfortable role as the matriarch of my tribe.

I am Lynn Scott:

  • author of A Joyful Encounter: My Mother, My Alzheimer Clients, and Me (a memoir about the abundance of spirit that I found among my Alzheimer clients).
  • contributor to eight anthologies of fiction, memoir, and poetry.
  • a guest on OPRAH and other talk shows .

http://lynnscottbooks.com

http://lynnscott.wordpress.com

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Genre: Women’s Fiction

Recent survey data indicates that 22% of the 55,000,000+ married women admit to having an extramarital affair. STAYING AFLOAT is the story of one of these women –although she wouldn’t have admitted it if she hadn’t gotten caught.

Crystal Scott is a stable and stalwart, stay-at-home wife and mother, aiming only to run an efficient home, care for her children and avoid confrontation.  Whatever her private thoughts are, she keeps them to herself.  But when her husband loses his job and shows no signs of looking for another, fault lines in their marriage are exposed.  She’s forced to re-enter the workforce, and when her dazzling, dynamic boss takes a personal interest in her, she slips into territory that most women have fantasized about, even if they don’t want to admit it — she morphs into a sex-starved adulteress.

I am Judith Marshall, author of the award-winning novel, HUSBANDS MAY COME AND GO BUT FRIENDS ARE FOREVER. I’ve been writing for thirteen years and am a member of the California Writers Club and the Women’s National Book Association. In addition, I am the President of Human Resources Consulting Services and a member of the faculty of the Council on Education in Management, for whom I teach a number of public seminars on a variety of HR-relates topics. I’m currently working on my third novel, BITTER ACRES.
http://judithmarshall.net/

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Genre: Women’s Fiction / Humor

39%  of the 68 million women employed in the U.S. work in management, professional, and related occupations. Through my book Katie Carlisle, I show women how to hold onto their integrity, humor, and vision . . . in spite of having to fight sexism in the corporate world.

Katie Carlisle has been lucky enough to have a mentor (her boss) who has taken her to a point where her promotion is pretty well guaranteed.  Only then everything goes wrong.  Her beloved mentor leaves the company under a cloud; his successor is a man whom Katie hates and fears; and a downward spiral in her fortunes starts.  This is the story of a smart woman’s struggle to hold onto her integrity, humor and vision in spite of the tumult around her—and her eventual triumph.

I am Margaret Davis.  I have a doctorate from Stanford University in Sociology, with a specialization in the structure and behavior of formal organizations.  I have had two non-fiction books published in my field.  Katie Carlisle, a humorous spoof on everyday life in a large corporation, is a work of fiction.  Yet, as many of my readers have commented, “Everyone who has ever worked in a big company will relate to and love this book.”

I am also the author of Straight Down the Middle, a family drama involving a young mother’s efforts to do what is best for her child while trying to come to terms with her own sexuality.
http://margaretdavisbooks.com/

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Writing Career Coach Teresa will help you practice your pitch
at WNBA’s  “Meet the Agents, Editors, & Publishers”
on March 27, 2010   http://wnba-sfchapter.org

Teresa LeYung Ryan is:
*   Board member at WNBA-SF Chapter since 2004
*    Author with agent and NY publisher
*   Writing career coach
*    Past president of California Writers Club-SF Peninsula Branch
*    Library advocate

Writing Career Coach Teresa is the author of  Build Your Name, Beat the Game: Be Happily Published (a 22-day workbook for writers to build their names and attract attention and fans before and after publication).   http://WritingCoachTeresa.com

As a community spirit, Teresa LeYung Ryan uses her novel Love Made of Heart to:
• shed light on stigmas suffered by immigrant women, men, and children
• advocate understanding of mental illness/traumas to the mind
• help survivors of violence find their own voices through writing
www.LoveMadeOfHeart.com

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