Online Virtual Conferences — Learn and Network from Home

We are big believers in continuing education and attending professional conferences. It is  always good to get more training whenever available. Conferences offer opportunities to increase knowledge and expand your network of peers and potential customers. Conferences don’t have to mean travel—some of the best are available to you from the comfort of your own home. The following are two we highly recommend.

Read more

Book Awards

This week we are revisiting a popular topic of a previous blog and we’ve included some additional information about upcoming awards and deadlines.

Book awards can be tremendously valuable to the marketing efforts of the winning books.

When a book wins an award, the result is free publicity for the author and usually additional book sales. The Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award are probably the most well-known and prestigious, but other book awards exist specifically for self-published or small press books.

Read more

Competition vs. Collaboration

How do you feel when you meet someone who offers the same services you do? Are you excited to meet a peer, or do you view them as a competitor that you must beware of? Most people will feel either threatened or excited or possibly somewhere in between. Where you come down on this spectrum can be very telling about your general philosophy of business and life.

If you believe that there isn’t enough business to go around you will view other people who offer similar services as competitors. Every client they land is one that isn’t on your roster. You avoid sharing any information that might give a competitor ways to improve their offerings or make their work life easier. You hold your knowledge and your resources close to the vest.

Read more

In the Spotlight: Candy Zulkosky

We like to occasionally feature some of the people who have completed the Professional Author and Speaker Training and Certification Programs. This week we’re shining the InstructionSmith spotlight on Candy Zulkosky.

Candy lives at the beach, on an island along the coast of North Carolina which is especially interesting considering she spent the first 30 or so years of her life living in the same small town tucked away in the mountains of Pennsylvania.

She ran away to sea for five years and taught computer classes to cruise ship passengers on the love boat! She lived for months at a time onboard Princess Cruise ships—and got paid to sail around the world. She notes this was arguably the best time of her life.

Read more

What’s Your Style?

If you are writing a book, it is always a good idea to keep a running list of terms you use in a way that may be outside the dictionary norm.

If you are writing fiction you can keep a running list of the way you spell names of people, towns, streets, etc. That way you will always spell them the same way and maintain consistency. That becomes especially important if you are writing about a fictional world. (Can you imagine J.K. Rowling trying to keep track of all the details of Hogwarts as she was writing Harry Potter if she hadn’t kept notes?)

Read more