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Writing and Publishing

Misdirected Press Releases Seem A Lot Like Spam

After yesterday’s column mentioning press releases that were poorly targeted, I made a list of the headlines sent my way recently. None of them have anything to do with what my magazines cover. Even though the summer months are light for news submissions, I still received quite a few. For some of them I am not even sure what they mean. Here is what I received this week in a 48-hour span:

  • Free Portal for Telemetry Applications
  • HRchitect Consultant Named IHRIM Member of the Year
  • Farmers Insurance Group® Puts Some‘Bite’ In Automobile Insurance In Michigan
  • Fujitsu Named Finalist for NXTcomm Eos Award
  • Conmio and TietoEnator build mobile Internet Service for Finnish mobile operator
  • Unified Communications Magazine Honors Interactive Intelligence with TMC Labs 2008Innovation Award
  • ET Can Now Phone Home
  • IP5280 VoIP Provider named finalist for Best Company to Work For in Colorado
  • 3 Things Every Parent Needs to Know About Kids and Cell Phones
  • Exanet & Datrox Bring Revolutionary Storage Technology to Media & Entertainment Companies
  • Detroit Area Foreclosures Slow In May 2008
  • India and China Becoming Major Centers of Pharmaceutical R&D
  • AutoTrader.com Named “Innovator of the Year” During Verint Systems’ 2008 Customer Conference
  • Wireless Mundi Receives International Patent Application on Integrated Voice & Data Communication
  • DataCore Software Partner Interware Systems Makes DataCore the Foundation of Its Total Enterprise Virtualization Practice
  • Three Sequencing Companies Join 1000Genome Project
  • PerfectSoftware® and the workplace HELPLINE® announce strategic partnership
  • Fujitsu Announces Connection-Oriented Ethernet Transport for their Packet Optical Networking Platforms
  • Perfect Software to offer expert employment law advice through its HR and Payroll software.
  • Social Software Frequently Lacking in System / Administrative Services

If you’re a bit perplexed by these headlines, let me give you one more thing to contemplate: Someone was paid to write and email them to me. What a waste of time and money.

[Read more curious headlines]

Learn more about writing and publishing in Peter’s new book: The Successful Author: Discover the Art of Writing and Business of Publishing. Get your copy today.

Peter Lyle DeHaan, PhD, is an author, blogger, and publisher with over 30 years of writing and publishing experience. Check out his book The Successful Author for insider tips and insights.

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Writing and Publishing

Hope for the Flowers

By Trina Paulus (Reviewed by Peter DeHaan.)

In addition to all my varied writing functions (writing articles, websites, and blogs, publishing two magazines, and way too much editing) I also write an occasional movie review and book review—just for fun. Here’s one of my recent efforts:

Hope for the Flowers is a delightful allegory encapsulating messages on multiple levels and applicable to all age groups. It is a short book that can be read in about 15 minutes. It is simply yet effectively illustrated by its author Trina Paulus. As such, it can function nicely as a children’s book, as well as a clever and profound teaching tool for adults of all ages.

The story chronicles the life pursuits and relationships of two caterpillars, Stripe and Yellow, searching for meaning and purpose in their existence.  It is about struggle, yearning, single-minded focus, diligence, perseverance, making mistakes, enlightenment, letting go, and ultimately…well, let’s not spoil the ending.

Hope for the Flowers is definitely thought-provoking and contains worthy life lessons showcased in a thoughtful and memorable storyline.

Hope for the Followers has surpassed 2 million copies and celebrated it’s 25 year anniversary.

This book is a great addition to anyone’s library.  Buy two, one to keep and one to give away!

Read more book reviews by Peter DeHaan.

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Writing and Publishing

“R” You Ready?

After another post, considering how words are used—and misused—my thoughts turned to how words are pronounced—and mispronounced.

I, for one, have a “flexible” pronunciation style. For any word possessing more than two syllables, I am seemingly able to enunciate it in at least two different ways—sometimes within the same sentence. Amazingly, I have not had to practice this skill; it just comes naturally. In fact, placing emphasis on the wrong syllable occurs so effortlessly that when I try to avoid alternate articulations, I often invent a third utterance.

In this regard, the letter “r” is of special interest to me. When I was a lad, I pronounced “wash” by inserting an “r” in the middle, as in “warsh.” Most of the time this was’’t a big deal; I think there was a local predilection to “warsh” things.

However, at age 10, we moved a scant 15 miles west. There, nobody wanted to “warsh” anything; I faced all manner of ridicule and humiliation over my proclivity to “warsh.” Although it took a concerted effort, I was eventually able to lose the “r” and I began to “wash” like everyone else.

Other people habitually interject an “r” into idea, as in “idear.” This usage is as odd to me as my “warshing” was to my friends growing up.

Then there are those folks who have a penchant for dropping “r”s.  For example “car” becomes “ca” and “bar” becomes “ba.” For example, did you drive your “ca” to the “ba”? Personally, I admire the concise brevity of this approach, though I have yet to adapt that style.

It could be that the misplaced “r”s in the “cas” got used when they were “warshed.” There’s a certain symmetry here that I can appreciate.

Any “idear” where it’s extra “r” came from?

Categories
Writing and Publishing

Writing Rightly

On my last post, I admitted a struggle with the writing process. Not so much with the end results, but instead with the speed of getting there. Therefore, I will be working on “writing rightly,” that is writing with efficient effectiveness.

Along with that, I have established some personal blogging guidelines for “writing rightly.”

My plan is to do three or four entries a week. In order to maintain a proper balance between work and play and service (this blog is a combination of all three), I will try to post in the evenings and only on weekdays. (Notice that this entry is not in the evening and the prior one was not on a weekday. This gives me two more goals to shoot for!)

Each post will be fairly short—about 200 to 300 words is the goal. I want each entry to be long enough to convey something of merit, but not so long that people bail out at the mere sight of its length. Personally, I do that often with articles I read and emails I receive; I want to spare you from that. Brevity is the watchword!

Lastly, though I will unashamedly plug businesses and websites that are meaningful or interesting to me, know I will not accept any payment or consideration to do so. This blogger cannot be bought!

Onward!

Learn more about writing and publishing in Peter’s new book: The Successful Author: Discover the Art of Writing and Business of Publishing. Get your copy today.

Peter Lyle DeHaan, PhD, is an author, blogger, and publisher with over 30 years of writing and publishing experience. Check out his book The Successful Author for insider tips and insights.