Lori and I are both members of the Cleveland Writer’s Group – Write, Publish, Polish. Dave and the group has helped both of us with our writing goals.
We discuss looking for a writer group to fit your writing needs and the benefits of writer groups.
One resource that she has used is the Midwest book review. These are the types of connections and resources you can get from being in a writer’s group.
The magic of editing. But Welcome back, Laurie, I know you have moved, but we’re on episode two, we try and trick everybody and make them think that we’re doing something magical on different weeks, it’s, but we really just kind of roll right into it. So let me ask you. Now, I know you’re you don’t like technology very much. So when you’re writing, what do you use to write with what do you write your your book out with?
as well, in the, when I was first writing my book, I would go to the library, the Cleveland Public Library downtown, and I had wonderful librarians there that really are kind of who’s inspired me to write the blog, I would go into word I would go and you know, Microsoft Word, and I would just type on Microsoft Word. And that’s, that’s how I started doing it. I had, I had the articles I wrote on paper, and then I would type them into Word, you know, to create a Word document.
So from the library, did you save it to a thumb drive or a cloud? Or did you just print it out every day?
I would just print it out then after you know, after I and then I was able to create like, you know, a book.
And have you done anything? just writing longhand? Or you do any other? Any? Do you use a software now? Or do you do anything different now?
No, because I’m, I’m pretty much done with the book writing journey. I’m pretty much done with it. You know, I for a while I thought well, maybe I’d like to start a blog. But it’s kind of hard, because I’m not familiar. Like you said, I’m not really familiar with the new technology. So I’m not really quite sure how to even do a blog or start a blog.
So we’re going to talk a little bit about it falls right into some of the softer stuff. You mentioned the Cleveland writer group, publish polish and write publish and polish i think is what it is that they had horn runs at. I’ve been a member of you’re a member of. And you said that Dave in the group helped you a lot. What what all did you get out of it? Because there’s lots of different groups out there, and some are better than others. I know with Dave’s group, they do critiquing a little bit. But what all have you gotten help with from the writers group?
Um, well, Dave Van Horn is is just he’s so such a positive, helpful. Guy, and I think he told me that he has his group starting up again, yo, now with all this COVID stuff. You know.
I think they’ve actually been doing zoom meetings, which I’ve attended a couple, but now I guess they’re meeting over and Hinkley instead of at the airport.
Right there. Yeah. You know, so that was really good that he was able to start up his group again. One of these days I’m going to try to get there, but it’s kind of far. But yeah, he Dave Van Horn has done a lot of seminars at the library. I’m writing and his groups. And he also told me that that’s where you’re from, is his group. Yes. And you know, so he knows a lot of people in the publishing world. Right. And he you know, he had another guy that reviewed my book. I don’t know if you’ve met him. Gary Rowan.
Maybe? That is that is writers name.
Yeah, that’s his real name, Gary. And he’s a he’s a book reviewer for Midwest book review.
Okay, okay. No, I don’t know him. Yeah. And Dave connected
me with him. Nice. Oh, and he just recently finished a review on my book. And the Midwest book review website.
Okay, right. So when you were working on the book, were you part of the group were you going and having People critique parts of it or get feedback then.
Well, the real publisher of my book was Michael Pietro, who passed away this year. And he’s the one that created you know, the whole book. You know, the whole book itself. Dave is more helping me more with marketing. And Michael pietras, the one that really helped me with writing the actual putting the actual book together. So Dave’s marketing, Michael Phl was the actual, like publisher and creator.
Okay. So what are some of the marketing techniques and things that you’re doing to get the word out?
Just hooking up with, you know, like people that you know, you know, could help you in different situations. I found Dave to be very helpful. You know, I’m sure you have to
Yeah. Have you done anything? Like, I know, you’re on Amazon? Have you done anything with ads? or anything like that?
No, I just, it’s just my focus on Amazon.
Okay, so not much, there are a lot of personal stuff and you said, You’ve gotten to some, I find that I think that a lot of authors Don’t think about you said, You’ve gotten some mammy meetings, and you sold a few books there, which I think is important because that’s the group that would be most interested in your book is people going to a some sort of meeting for mental health issues are those are helping loved ones with mental health issues? That’s your group. What I find interesting, I’ll say that interesting, but what I find kind of funny is a lot of authors will go to author events and want to sell their fiction book Well, these are other writers, they don’t want to buy your book, if it’s fiction, you know, that’s not the right group to sell your book to. So I think go into these Nami meetings is a great choice because that’s the people that buy a book it’s you know, defining your demographic who’s going to buy my book and I think a lot of authors miss that. Have you had anyone from those groups you said you’ve sold a couple books have you then you know it got word out from there that some other people then bought it because they heard from somebody there anything like that?
Well I had a couple of people on the psychiatric ward purchased the book and I’ve had people at the Nami groups purchased the book you know and then just advertising on Amazon that that helps promote it to to just during the Amazon advertising campaigns and you know, Amazon can really help you a lot with marketing Yeah, but you just need somebody who knows how to do it and Dave Van Horn is that person you know that understands how to do the marketing through Amazon right? Yeah.
Again, networking getting to know people through various groups I’m in a couple groups networking
basically yeah networking like just you know, running into people that you know, you know, I wouldn’t be sitting here doing this video with you if it wasn’t for
Dave sorry. And that’s why I reached out to Dave because I’ve worked with him and he’s helped me a bit and I said hey, you know, by the way I do this podcast so if anybody in the group would like to be on the podcast, let me know then you know, and that’s how it starts that’s how you get to know these people.
Right? But you have to go places where you can run into people right? Like go to the writers groups go to the library events when they have you know, book fairs or you know, like I said the South Euclid library green road you know, before this crazy COVID had they had like writers conferences and you know, you just you just have to go places where you can meet people that are in the publishing world.
Those are all benefits that you miss out if you don’t go find a good group in the area.
Right, but I don’t I I think with COVID though, I’m not quite sure when they’ll start up groups again, you know,
I know some of them started back up with zoom. I am actually part of a mastermind that we don’t meet because everyone’s across the country but we meet via zoom even before so I think that makes it nicer cuz I know Dave, when they moved, they started they kept the zoom meeting. So even if I couldn’t attend live, I could probably get enough time to jump on part of the meeting for zoom. So I think that’s a benefit that others should take advantage of, you know, take get hit on these calls.
You know, like you said, I’m not familiar too much with all the modern technology but like, coming to the library where I’m speaking now, they were able to, you know, put the video on and do this because I No clue how to, you know.
And one of the benefits we’ve got. I know you’re you’re in a Cleveland library, but Cuyahoga County has a very award winning library system. And the over in South Parma or whatever, the scribble Writing Center. That’s where I’m at now you’re at scribble right? Oh, okay.
No, I’m at the right now I’m at the green road. South you, South Euclid Cuyahoga County. Okay. Library.
Okay. That’s not where the scribble Writing Center is, is it?
I think that’s, I think it couldn’t Sorry, I
I think you’re right, I think it is. Okay.
So but that’s, that’s something we’ve got that a lot of places don’t, because that Writing Center is phenomenal. They have meetings, they have webinars, or seminars, they have author events, they have a whole section of books and materials to check out for writers. Plus, you can just go and take your laptop and write and they have a writer in residence. And, you know, right, any writer in the area that does not take advantage of that is doing a disservice to themselves.
Well, that’s why I said you have to connect yourself with other writers, right? And you know, because you email, you may just meet somebody that you know, can really help you.
Alright, so, Laurie, it’s been really great talk. But before we go, do you have any last minute advice, and you’ve already given a lot of good advice to new authors? any last minute advice? You would tell authors?
Last minute advice would be, check out my books, get your guide to surviving and thriving, feel free to leave a review.
There you go.
Hopefully, hopefully, it’s helpful. Hopefully you’ll you’ll like it, you know, and I guess that’s it.
All right. Great. Well, Laurie, thanks for taking some time. And I know you went out of your way to make sure you can get the room and all that so I appreciate it. You know, I don’t get as many nonfiction authors, especially for topics like that.
Seven times a week, or something in the library. Okay. I’m sorry. That’s okay.
It we are alive. All right. All right, Laurie, I appreciate it. And I hope you have a really good day. I’ll I’ll let you know when this goes live.
Okay, thank you.