Podcasting – The Experience #ADL310


Podcasting was a bit of a roller coaster for me. I’m not fond of listening to myself talk so each time I would spend the day dreading the recording. By the second one, though, I was a bit more comfortable, and I think it showed in the podcast.

I found it interesting from a technical perspective, since I have a headset with a good mic that I use for conference calls with clients and other agents, but the sound quality for recording was horrible. So I wound up using my iPhone and though that was more likely to pick up background noise, it did a great job with the sound quality.

I think I could see these being very useful for me as an agent in one way and as an author in another.

As an agent, I could put out a weekly recording of publishing industry information that could be useful for authors who are in the stages of seeking representation. Or I could talk about the indie publishing side of things and help out the countless authors who have made the decision to publish themselves. I can think of many different podcasts about money I could do – though it seems to be a taboo subject I think it would be helpful for authors to hear about the realities of advances and such. A podcast at the end of every night of any given conference would be interesting, I think, to talk about what stood out for me. There is so much to absorb at a conference, it would be interesting to hear a run-down – even interesting for me, since by the end of the conferences my brain is usually so full I don’t remember much until I start seeing the emails come in.

As an author, I could talk about the writing process, what I’m working on, what’s coming up in terms of releases for me. Perhaps even talk about tips and things I’ve picked up along the way, or review the books I’m reading. This part is more difficult for me, since I feel like it’s shameless promotion which makes me feel a bit narcissistic. One thing I would be very interested in doing as an author would be to write a serial novel for podcast purposes and release it in five minute segments. I would have fun with that.

I’d be very interested to hear any other ideas for podcasts, or if any of you are interested in a certain aspect that I have mentioned here.

The hardest part for me, like everything, will be to find the time to use this in a regular way. Because I believe that in order to gain listeners, you have to be regular. Perhaps the next class I should take should be time management…

My experiences listening to podcasts #ADL310


I joined PodOmatic for my social media classes, and listened to quite a few samples. I can immediately see how podcasts could be a helpful tool for authors as a promotional tool, and also perhaps for the agents at the agency to use. Perhaps as a series of informational podcasts to help authors with craft, or do Q&A’s about publishing. It’s limitless really, the applications.

I went straight to the literature section, followed the Ellory Queen magazine and hit “Play” on their first episode. Well, I didn’t realize it was an hour long, so as soon as I saw that I stopped it. Scanning the list for EQ’s recordings, I saw that they were all quite long. I did find a promising group to follow: Scary Spooky. The stories were quick and the feel of the page (given by the dark forest background) promised many goose-bump inducing moments to come.

Unfortunately, the voice they used was mechanical, and though it seemed to be the voice of an older, British man, it read text with that same robotic sound my PDF reader has. This took out all the inflection for me and I found it impossible to follow along with any interest even though I gave two of them a try.

So back to the drawing board for me as I scrolled through the listings. Then I stumbled across “The Authors Show” – a radio interview segment that I had the pleasure once to be interviewed with for my first book. I scrolled through the listings looking for a book that might interest me when I found a book by one of my clients, S. Jane Gari, titled Losing the Dollhouse. Of course I had to give that one a listen. It was interesting hearing this interview that really puts the author in a position of answering questions that force them to think about their book in a marketing/promotional light.

I thought I would then poke around and see if I could find something for pure entertainment, and I found a couple of Australian ladies chatting about Supernatural episodes called Women of Letters. They were lots of fun to listen to, but a very long podcast – not for the time-pressed consumer. I did find because of their conversational tone that I wanted to join in the conversation at times. I think this particular one would be great to listen to an episode of if I were driving somewhere. Like talk radio really.

Coming up next: 2 podcasts for this course. Any special requests?

Diverse Books Contest


Michelle L. Johnson:

For all the diverse Middle Grade writers out there – here’s one you don’t want to miss! #ADL310

Originally posted on Writing and Illustrating:

diversecroppedIf you write MG and have a diverse background, including (but not limited to) LGBTQIA, people of color, gender diversity, people with disabilities, and ethnic, cultural, and religious minorities, you may be interested in submitting a short story to We Need Diverse Books. They are putting together an anthology of children’s literature to be published in January 2107.

Phoebe Yeh, VP/Publisher of Crown Books for Young Readers/Random House, has acquired publication rights to this Middle Grade WNDB Anthology, working title “Stories For All Of Us.”

The anthology will be in memory of Walter Dean Myers and it will be inspired by his quote: “Once I began to read, I began to exist.” Every new story contribution to this anthology will be by a diverse author.

WNDB is proud to announce that the anthology will have one story reserved for a previously unpublished diverse author. WNDB will fill that slot via…

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Google + Versus Facebook


I’ve had a Google+ account for a long time it seems, and for a while kept waiting for everyone to join up over there and leave Facebook in the dust. That has yet to happen, and most people I know don’t really post regularly to Google+.

Google+-logo

This week during the Social Media course I’ve been using it a bit more and watching a lot of the videos which tell us how to use it effectively and I’m learning that Google+ has some advantages over Facebook that I hadn’t considered, however, it’s probably never going to be the monster that Facebook is simply because it doesn’t allow us to showcase things the way in which we’ve grown so accustomed. Also, who wants to go through all that trouble of moving all their information/pictures/memories over? I know I don’t.

There are some very functional tools that Google+ has that I’ve been using for a few years and these are probably the reason Google+ will hang in there. Hangouts is the biggest one and it can be used in so many ways. I use it for staff meetings with my agents. It’s nice to connect face to face and seem like everyone’s in the same room even though we work all over the country.

Google-Hangouts-logo

You can also use hangouts to stream a live show or seminar. This is something I haven’t yet done, but have considered often when I find myself talking to an author about contract points or payment schedules. It would be a great way to run a seminar and have people tune in.

The biggest lesson I’ve learned about it this week is that more people are using Google+ than I thought, and that I really should spend some more time there are really get a handle on everything it can do for me.

How about you? Are you on Google+? If you are, you can find me here.