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LIZ PURCELL - freelance writer with a Bachelor of Arts in English from San Francisco State University

Want a Copywriter? Avoid These Three Deadly Mistakes

A copywriter is different from other writers. We don’t just describe – we excite, inspire, and motivate. Whether you want content for your website, a tag line for your business, or a makeover for your Internet presence, a copywriter can help you find the words to make your message sing. The right copywriter, that is.

Sometimes, in their eagerness to promote their business, managers and entrepreneurs make predictable missteps. Here three big ones and how to avoid them:

1) Signing on wholesale before you’ve tried someone out. 

 If you hire someone for a big job before you’ve had a chance to try them out on a small job, your whole project could go in a direction you don’t want.

Instead: Hire someone for a small job before you hire them for a big job. This way you can see whether you like their work, and whether you feel enough of a connection where you could imagine working together over the long haul.

2) Giving up after the first try.

You don’t want to go to the other extreme, either. Great copy usually takes multiple feedback loops. This means you say what you want, the writer cranks out a sample or several, you give feedback, and the writer begins again with your most recent feedback in mind. Repeat, and repeat again.

Through this process, you get clearer and clearer about what you want, and the writer gets closer and closer to giving it to you. At least, if you’ve got a good connection with your writer (see #1 above).  Rarely will someone hit the nail on the head on their first try. If you kick a writer to the curb because they didn’t get it right the first time, you could wind up missing out on some great writing for your business.

Instead: Agree ahead of time on the number of revisions you’ll build in (I usually recommend at least three). By the third revision, you should get a clear sense of whether you’re heading in a direction that makes sense to you.

3) Hiring just any writer

So your spouse’s coworker’s nephew just graduated from Princeton with an English degree and wants some work? Great! You decide, heck, it’s an Ivy League school, how bad could his copy be?

Seven pages of overwrought prose later, you might start to think that writers having specialties might not be such a bad thing after all. You’d be right.

Here’s why: The kind of writing required in most arenas-universities, nonprofits, tech environments, etc. – isn’t what you need for your business. You want a writer who knows how to take the essence of what you’re offering, distinguish you from the competition, and get your clients to call.

Instead: Find someone whose samples excite you. Though some writers are multitalented, don’t assume that the grant proposal writer, journalist or ghostwriter’s skills automatically translate into good copy. Most don’t.

Good luck!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Jill C. Nagle

Bamboo Origin of Vertical Chinese Writing

In China, in parks, mountains and villages, you can find Chinese characters or other symbols carved on living bamboos. People just act naturally, on the smooth surface, picking up a stone with sharp tips. This simple, natural way of writing could have been practiced thousands of years ago and have to do with the origin of Chinese writing.

Vertical carvings on living bamboos predated bamboo slips

Writing horizontally is natural for eyes to read. Although not with a natural direction, Chinese writing had been fixed in vertical columns until last century. There should be a cause. Tsien [1] has attributed verticality of Chinese writing to bamboo strip and brush. However, bamboo strips can also be arranged in horizontal direction to write on. It seems no horizontal writings on bamboo strips of ancient times have ever been discovered. Regarding the origin of verticality of Chinese writing on bamboo slips, there could be three scenarios. In the first case, the scribes chose vertical direction without trying horizontal. In the second case, both vertical and horizontal writings were practiced but later horizontality was abandoned. In the third case, vertical direction was already in place before bamboo strips were used. The first case is unlikely, since scribes can know which direction is more advantageous after trying each one. The second case means vertical arrangement is advantageous over horizontal arrangement in competition. We don’t support this case since we consider horizontal writing is suitable for reading thus should not fail in competition. Let’s talk about the third case.

To find writings before bamboo strips, we focus on two things: writing material and writing instrument. Again, we find bamboo. But this time it is living bamboo. No doubt, as indigenous plant in China, bamboo is abundant, having smooth surface and thin skin. It is easy and convenient to carve on bamboos. The carvings are clear for reading and remain so during bamboo’s lifetime. These conditions are satisfied: writable, readable and relatively preservable. Stones with sharp tip can be the tool. In prehistoric society, perhaps nothing was more suitable for developing writing than living bamboo and stone. It is only natural to write in vertical columns on the round and narrow surface of upright-growing stems.

Living bamboos can be the earliest candidate for writing. One question is: did people start writing on them earlier than on bamboo slips that were cut from them? It is very possible that our ancestors began using stone tools to carve them at the beginning, long before the advents of ink and brush. That is the simplest way of writing in its broad sense. In early times, people might plant bamboos in front of their homes for a variety of usages. People also carved symbols on them for drawing and recording purposes. Later, people found the writings can be migrated to bamboo slips. Carvings on living bamboos in that time might be abundant. It is hard to know the amount of the texts and their complexity. They should be already sequenced vertically. Before bamboo slips, there should have been at least ‘sentences’ written on living bamboos. Later writings on bamboo slip and book inherited the verticality.

Living bamboos and bamboo slips carried the lost origin of Chinese writing

However, symbols in living bamboo cannot last to our generation. Many materials cannot be preserved for such long time. Usually, research on history of writing is based on archeological findings and written records. It seems pre-bamboo slip ancient carvings on living bamboo have never been mentioned. Writing may have already migrated to bamboo slip before the earliest records. It is usually difficult to create works written (engraved etc.) with long-lasting material and method. But it is okay for the majority of writings to last for only years/decades instead of hundreds of years or millennia. For most people, preservation for over a hundred years was not desirable in most cases. Even today, with advanced preservation technique, most published works would not be found a millennium later, not to mention personal writings.

Oracle bone script is the undisputed earliest China’s true writing system dating to Shang dynasty. The oracle bones were mainly for divination of the royal house. Given their special purpose, relative scarcity of bones and shells, and relative difficulty of making the scripts, they should not be the most widely used writing material in that time. The script was already fully developed, with no apparent predecessor. True writing in China could have existed much earlier. Records from other surviving media indicate that bamboo slips existed as early as in oracle bone script period. There are Neolithic signs dating a few millennia earlier. In these millennia, there possibly were many writings on bamboo slips or living bamboos, on which Chinese writing developed.

Conclusion

Carvings on living bamboos with stone tool might have originated Chinese writing. They fixed Chinese system in vertical direction which was later inherited by bamboo slips, paper books and so forth.

References

[1], Tsuen-Hsuin Tsien. Written on bamboo and silk: The Beginnings of Chinese Books and Inscriptions.Second Edition. University of Chicago Press.2004. Page 204.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Charley Pein

Promoting Your Online Business With Article Marketing

In this modern age, promoting your business online is becoming quite interesting and exciting by the day.

But, you will agree with me that aspiring online business owners must first know what it takes to do this in the first place.

There are many ways of creating public awareness for your business.

Placing advert in newspapers, magazines or online news portals, as well as joining forums are some of the ways of creating public awareness and attracting people to your site.

But, advert placement is expensive and does not guarantee quick returns on your efforts.

People who place adverts in newspapers are seen as marketers, not necessarily experts. They are trying to sell their products or services.

They may have little or no knowledge about the product or service they are advertising.

So, how do you promote your online business? Writing articles that will tell people who visit your site what you have to offer is one sure way of promoting your online business. It is cheap and economical with a global reach.

However, the angle here is that whatever article you write to draw people to your site must add value to them, solve their problems, give insights into existing problems, or impart knowledge.

Good writers know that it takes persistence, patience and focus to craft a good article that will fly. But, the gains will come if you deliver value added articles.

More and more people will keep visiting your site. It adds value to the lives of your visitors and improves the ranking of your site on the various search engines.

Experienced online business owners know that writing or hiring a ghost writer to craft fantastic articles that will solve a problem for the people is the first major step towards making money, online.

But, it is not going to be a quick fixed thing as business, online and offline has an incubation period.

After writing the articles on your products or services and getting them posted on your site, the job is not yet completed.

These articles should be linked to the various social media platforms that you have subscribed to. You know these platforms.

I am not writing this inside a lecture room in Lagos, south-west Nigeria. But, you know that if your articles are linked to your social media platforms, friends, professional colleagues, business partners, etc, will get to read your articles.

Based on this, they will decide whether or not to continue visiting your site, or even initiate a business deal with you. These are some of the steps you must take in order to make money online.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Emmanuel Udom

Direct Response Copywriter Tricks of the Trade

Direct response copywriters won’t always tell you what I’m about to tell you…

We know direct response copywriters have more in common with salespeople than with writers of literature… since it’s the job of direct response copywriters to sell products and services rather than to entertain or provide dramatic satisfaction for readers. They differ greatly from agency copywriters, too, whose job is to sound clever.

Nonetheless, there is a “creative” dimension to direct response copywriting that’s not often discussed.

Take a look at some of the great direct response copywriters such as John Carlton and Dan Kennedy, for instance. There’s a strong literary component to their writing, with compelling characters… a rollicking story… and style.

These copywriters, like novelists, create a whole world for their readers. And they immerse readers in that world, take them by the hand, and lead them where they want them to go.

Novelists lead their readers to dramatic tensions and satisfactions; copywriters lead their readers to solutions to their problems… a new land where their lives are better and their futures brighter–if only they buy the product!

This immersive, literary element in DR copywriting is crucial to “getting” this kind of writing. And just as almost any story is embellished for effect, so too are DR ads.

Let’s say I told you I received these copywriting strategies from a secret DR copywriting “wizard” who went into hiding to avoid public exposure. That would affect you a lot more than if I told you I learned this stuff from a retired DR copywriter, wouldn’t it?

Do you see the difference? I’m essentially saying the same thing, except I’ve transformed a boring fact into an extraordinary, almost mystical one.

So it’s the story behind what you’re selling that really creates the impact and makes for epic copywriting.

Great copywriters don’t have to lie, because they’re creative enough to “dress up” the facts to make them appear otherworldly and alluring.

Another thing to realize is that great copywriters create great characters… characters readers empathize with because they share the same problem or situation. These characters once experienced the same problem readers are going through but managed to escape or defeat that problem… typically because they used the product or service offered.

Here’s the deal: DR copywriting often has a strong literary, creative component. Many great DR copywriters have studied literature or even write it themselves.

Is it absolutely essential to writing good DR copy? No. But studying literature and storytelling will take your DR copy to the next level, I promise you.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Jamie Cassata

Freelance Writers – Marketing is Not a Dirty Word – Part 1

I often have the opportunity to meet new medical writers, and their most frequent concern is that they don’t like to/want to/have the money to [insert your choice here] market themselves to prospective clients. In one breath, they admit they hate to market; in the next they lament their lack of projects and, as a result, their limited income.

In our first book I made a statement that if you have the skill to sell yourself and you can string words together to make sentences, you can probably get hired in this industry. I’ve encountered a lot of mediocre writers in the business who make an adequate living despite their mediocrity. Why? Because they’re experts at selling the sizzle since they don’t have the steak.

That doesn’t mean that every medical writer–or any writer, for that matter–has to be an expert marketer. Few people I know enjoy pounding the pavement and soliciting work from strangers. But in today’s environment, marketing is no longer limited to selling yourself via cold calls and face-to-face networking. Nor does marketing have to be a high-budget item. Here are some no-cost or low-cost options you can use to establish and later grow your writing business.

  • Websites:  In my opinion, all writers need websites to showcase their skills and backgrounds. At the very least, establish a site that has samples of your work prospective clients can view. Be careful, though, not to put anything on your site that is protected by confidentiality agreements. Some Internet service providers offer websites for free. You can also buy domains for as low as $1.99, with monthly hosting fees as low as $4.99 per month. To achieve a fairly high Google page ranking, however, the content on your site must change on a regular basis. If you want to drive people to your site, but can’t commit to updating it frequently, consider blogging.
  • Blogs:  Blogging is a great way to establish yourself as an expert in a particular niche and also offers an opportunity to polish your writing skills. WordPress, Blogspot, and Blogger (a Google tool) are popular platforms where you can set up blogs for free. To attract and keep readers, though, you need to blog on a regular basis, about three times a week, at a minimum. Along with frequent blogging, adding pictures and graphics to your blog is another way to increase your Google page ranking.
  • Twitter: At this moment, Twitter is the social networking darling. If you’re not Twittering, you could be missing out on potential future customers. The challenge of Twitter is to give your followers value in short snippets of no more than 140 characters. I’ve found the best use of Twitter is to become a filter, updating my followers on topics of interest in the field. To get followers, you have to follow people. Use the “advanced search” function to find Twitterers in your area of interest, follow them, and comment on their posts. You can find me at http://twitter.com/cyndyandbrian.
  • LinkedIn:  What MySpace is to preteens and teens, LinkedIn is to the business world. And like MySpace, it’s free. Complete your profile, upload a real picture, and start inviting people to become a connection. But don’t stop there. LinkedIn has hundreds of groups. Search out and join those in your areas of interest. I belong to several, including Medical Marketing and Communications, Technical Writers, Content Wrangler, Continuing Medical Education, and several more. After becoming a group member, start a discussion or respond to discussions posted by other members. I’ve made some great connections this way.

These are just a few tactics you can use to increase your exposure. In Part 2 of this series, I’ll discuss some other social networking and syndication strategies you can use to position yourself as an expert, which could lead to more clients and more work.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Cyndy Kryder

Using the Five Senses to Enhance Your Writing

Sight

This is the one sense that provides most of the detail for our stories. Our words become our readers’ eyes, giving us a blank canvas upon which to paint a picture to tell our story. From the sight of a common fear, such as a spider creeping silently along the floor to the glimpse of a shadow on the stairway… sight is our greatest source of horror inspiration and description. When describing the sight of something terrifying there’s a huge resource at the writer’s disposal, because we can use our other senses to add glorious, gory detail to our descriptions. Here’s an example of how all five of our senses can be used to describe a simple scene:

The apple was bright green, its skin polished and shining as it nestled in the fruit bowl (sight). The scent was fresh, as though the fruit had just been plucked from the tree (smell). She took it from the bowl, her fingers closing around the firm smooth skin (touch) as she lifted it to her lips. The apple crunched loudly (sound) as her teeth cut through the skin into the tart, juicy flesh (taste). As the fresh juice ran down her throat she noticed a small black speck moving slowly in the creamy flesh. Closer inspection revealed that she hadn’t just taken a bite from the apple – she’d bitten through a fat, juicy worm.

Sound

Remember when you were a small child, and your parents put you to bed? Perhaps there was no nightlight, and the TV room was at the other end of the house…

You’re lying in your bed. All alone. Desperately waiting for your eyes to accustom to the dark you hear it – a soft, scratching noise – and it seems to be coming from under the bed. It lasts only a moment before it stops. You wonder if you were hearing things, and you’re so desperate for the darkness to lighten you forget to blink. The blackness seems to swirl around you, cloaking you in a thick, black fog through which no light can penetrate. Suddenly it’s there again, only this time the scratching seems closer. And louder. It seems to last a bit longer this time. So you hold your breath, because that darkness doesn’t seem to be lifting. You’ve lost the sense of sight, so by not breathing you hope to hear the sound more clearly, and identify its location…

The description above relies on the complete absence of the sense of sight. This is where fear comes in and can play a major descriptive role – in this case blind fear. To compensate for loss of sight the sense of hearing becomes more acute, so the writer can introduce other horror-inducing thoughts and impressions. Where is the sound coming from? How close is it? Will I be able to feel it if it decides to climb on the bed? When will my eyes get used to the darkness? Should I start panicking now? If I get out of bed will it jump on top of me?

Touch

This sense conjures up description of things most us will probably try to never touch, like slime, frogs and warty skin. All these items are perfect for the horror/scary genre, but writers can also take the more ordinary touch phobias and use those items to horrific effect. Some people cannot bear to touch velvet, while others are terrified of touching paper. Still others find their skin crawls when they encounter cotton wool…

Opening the wooden box in the hotel bathroom, she recoiled in horror. Nestling quietly in the bottom of the box, white and shining, was a cluster of cotton wall balls. She stepped back, collapsing on the side of the bath. The mere thought of feeling those soft fibres squeaking as the ball pressed against her skin was enough to induce goosebumps. She wrapped her arms around herself in a subconscious effort to protect her body from the fear she’d had her entire life. Just thinking about cotton balls made her skin crawl. She moaned quietly, remembering the silent noise they emitted when squeezed; a noise that seemed to pass right through her skin. Through her panic she wondered if she’d remember to pack her facial sponges…

Descriptions of this particular sense can been embellished with the use of physical reactions to feeling certain items; goosebumps, stepping away from the source of horror, collapsing with fear, subconscious act of defence (hugging the body) and a noise of fear (moaning). All these reactions add to the reader’s imagination, while adding to the picture your words are “painting”.

Smell

Bad smells in the horror/scary genre usually mean something bad is about to happen or has already happened. The smell of rotting or burning flesh is probably the most common description applicable to this genre, and the description of the smell can also be used to indicate how the death occurred. Bad household smells range from two week old pizza languishing in the refrigerator to potatoes burning in a pot on the stove. Adjectives include: smelly, reeking, fetid, malodorous, rank, putrid and noxious.

As she applied the finishing touches to the client’s hair, a sharp smell suddenly assaulted her nostrils. It was a smell she hated and dreaded, because it was an odour so terrible the memory remained burned into the subconscious forever. She froze as the acrid stench filled the air, assaulting her nostrils and her throat with its foul flavour. An instant later her salon filled with gasps and shrieks of horror. She turned towards the three ladies seated underneath the dryers. Mrs Hamilton and Mrs Edgar had managed to wriggle out from underneath their dryers, but poor Mrs Smith was unable to move. One of the pins from her rollers had obviously caught in the dryer, and ignited her hair. Smoke was seeping out of the top of the machine, which had started to spark. Placing her hand over her mouth and nose in a attempt to banish the malodorous scent she started to move towards Mrs Smith, who screamed as flames began flickering out of the dryer…”

Taste

Most, if not all of us, have an aversion to a certain food. We don’t like to eat it and the taste of it makes us feel sick. Perhaps the mere thought of tasting it is enough to induce some horrible thoughts and feelings.

The candlelight caught the designs on the wineglass, casting a dark crimson glow on the table. He lifted the glass to his lips, the rich musky flavour of the cabernet sauvignon still drifting over his taste buds. At the first sip of the wine he almost choked. There was obviously something wrong with this new bottle of wine, for the liquid in his mouth had a bitter, sour taste. Although the consistency was the same as the previous glass, there was an acidic flavour he could not identify… although it seemed vaguely familiar. He swirled the liquid around in his mouth before swallowing it. It seemed to sting his tongue and burn the roof of his mouth, and when he swallowed the acrid liquid his throat tingled. Suppressing the urge to cough he reached for the glass of water next to his plate and took a sip. As the cool water cleansed the tart taste from his palate his hostess lifted the bottle he’d used to fill his wineglass… and poured balsamic vinegar over her plate of salad.

Writers have a magnitude of adjectives at their disposal when describing the horror of tasting unappetising food. These include: pungent, sour, acrid, bitter, fetid, stinking, putrid, decaying, rancid, reek, stale and bad.

Real life can be far more fascinating than fiction, and using our senses in our writing proves this truth. So the next time you sit down in front of your keyboard tap in to those five senses, and see just how they can colour your words!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Sarah Todd

Worlds Beyond Strange World (Planet Reversal Last Episode With Dr. McGee) X

When Dr. McGee left my office to investigate a matter concerning Venus and Saturn, along with its moons, he left with me his memorandums on his research up to date on the issue he was putting together. Somehow I was not optimistic I’d not see him again in the flesh. I had no doubts he-as always-had discovered something, after he had denoted something about hand-axes made of flint 700,000-years ago found on a Norfolk beach, a recent axe made of basalt 49,000 years old, then referring to the first Sumerian King, A-lu-lim, 241,000 B.C., and the north and south poles being reversed by earth’s magnetic invisible shield which seemingly took place 778,000-years ago, he called it: ‘Planet Reversal’ and then he went home, sat in chair, had heart attack and died. My old Army friend, and scientific comrade, just like that. The funeral took place in Alabama yesterday, and his manuscript, or memos he left behind for me to ponder on, a step into the mysterious cloud-enwrapped planet earth, as it was perhaps known to humanity or its inhabitants, per near a million years ago, information unattainable had he not left them with me.

As I started reading them in my office today after his funeral yesterday, a strange, outwardly unearthly world we had back in those far-off days, and so now I shall let Dr. McGee tell his own story in his own words as I read the manuscript, but a few pages long in its entire, to be his verbal scribe, the impersonality of my role being his explainer:

“They were dark haired people called ‘black-heads’ and spoke an agglutinative language, similar to the Ancient Turkish (Turanian). I do believe they came from another world, perhaps Venus, Saturn, or one of their moons, or one of the many 4000-planets now discovered by our interspace telescopes, searching the galaxies, especial the one hundred galaxies hidden behind the Milky Way, with their countless solar systems and planets:

“I found a map, purchased it, it was a redrawn map from around the 15th Century, which was a duplicate of a prior map I was told of a more ancient type. I traced the map back to King A-lu-lim, the first known Sumerian king, 241,000 B.C. His dynasty ruled five to six kingdoms, one being Antarctica. His region alone lasted 28,800-years, and his dynasty as I mentioned went back to, 241,000 B.C., thereafter onward. Until the second dynasty came into to play 24,510-years was its length, and the three or four or five dynasties thereafter, perhaps lasting 3000 to 3500-years a piece. It is safe to say, the Sumerian race goes back to perhaps 300,000-years or so, at which time, during this period the map was originally made. And on the map, Antarctica was a luscious green landmass.

“Now we must keep an open mind to this. One mystery leads to another, and things don’t get solved unless another unsolved mystery appears, and so King A-lu-lim whom I believe had the map original made, and made at a distance above the earth, and prior to his coming to earth, perhaps from some spacecraft, since it is a view overlooking the globe.

“To make the story simpler to understand I am abandoning any formal phrases in physics, or clutches, and try to explain how this all came about in more or less modest way, but I must assume the King and his astronauts came from some planet, I choose Venus, although it very well could have been anywhere among the star planets. The King, perhaps the Captain of the spacecraft, was courageous in his own right, hacking his way through space, hesitate to leave any real data on his trip about his trip, other than the map, having to overthrow the known world of hybrid humanoids. Even avoiding to a certain degree their presence, perhaps using them for labor purposes, when need be.

“Prior to the King’s arrival, about 778,000 B.C., another happening was in process, inside earth, and outside it, and around it. Earth’s turbulent and invisible magnetic field and shield, was taking a reversal.

“As we know within earth’s molten core, here fluid motions generate this field, some 3000 km beneath our feet. In a swirling opinion of liquid iron, this is what makes a compass do what a compass is supposed to do, and also creates the effects, as in the magnetism in rocks and ocean currents. As a result, we have this magnetic ‘bubble’ that protects us from space radiation, now weakening. Should it weaken excessively, north will become south and south, north! This very thing was taking place 780,000 B.C., slowly but surely, perhaps completed 250,000 B.C., which we can conclude Antarctica was green prior to this, whereupon, the Sumerians in its first eight kings, would have lived through this cycle change, of the mass magnetic field thinning at its midriff and reversing itself, changing the seasons in the south predominately and permanently, or at least until now, as it is changing once again.

“This change intensity, can be seen in the magnetic north, which is off more often than 400-miles any given day, and the geographical North, is never the same as the magnetic north as we know, and perchance think it should be. This all of course takes place in earth’s liquid motion within her east-west fluctuation flow.

“Now back to our dear Sumerian Kings, what happened to their dynasties? For the old dynasties perished, and the lesser dynasties came into play, those that ruled for 3500-years or so. By 70,000 B.C., the whole process of earth’s reversal had taken place. And because of this, a tragic event took place, that per near vanished earth’s humanoids to extinction. And the Sumerians likewise, actually the study shows the drastic dip in humanity to about 5000-total, male, female, old, young, children, and the entirety of humanoids and sub humanoids. Of them, perhaps forty-Sumerians survived, of which out of this, about 7600 B.C., the first Dynasty of Erech came into existence. But what took place on the island of Sumatra, in Indonesia, and in the South China Sea area, during an Ice Age, Toba, a volcano erupted; a number ‘8’, of a mega-colossal magnitude, the greatest volcanic eruption in historic times. It blew 650 miles of vaporized rock into the air. Leaving a great portion of earth with six centimeters of ash, it cooled the earth by twenty degrees, and what was left of mankind, were simply small bands of humans, hungry and scattered for 50,000-years. And the legacy of the Sumerian Kings.” Dr. B. G. McGee

#5237/ 5-11 & 12 2016

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Dennis Siluk Dr.h.c.

Writers Against Plagiarism

#WritersAgainstPlagiarism

If you’re not up to date on the #CopyPasteCris, I highly suggest you read Nora Roberts’ post – Plagiarism, Then and Now (link under “What Can We Do?”). Essentially, there’s a bevy of scammers and plagiarizers out there copying and pasting the work, in whole or in part, of elite authors, particularly in the Romance genre. They paste together pieces of a novel and send it out to ghost writers then publish it under their own name and title for $.99 or free, forcing the rest of us to lower our prices to compete.

There’s a great post on the CaffeinatedFae’s blog – #CopyPasteCrisList (link under “What Can We Do?”), listing the authors and novels plagiarized by one scammer, Cristiane Serruya. At the time of the post, 51 books and 34 authors were discovered to have been plagiarized by Serruya. It’s scandalous and it hurts us all.

If, like me, you’re struggling to make a go of your honest writing career, whether self-published or traditionally published, how does it make you feel to know you are competing against a slew of criminals like Serruya? I know how it made me feel – furious. We work damn hard and we shouldn’t be forced to compete with the likes of Serruya. The big online bookstores are allowing these scammers to publish as they’re making a tidy little profit from it as well. They’re not going to stop unless we, as writers and readers, make them.


Let’s stand together to stop these liars and thieves from profiting off the hard work of others and making it difficult for honest, hardworking writers to succeed.

After reading Nora Roberts’ posts, I’ve been thinking about how we can help in taking a stand against scammers and plagiarizers. Obviously, I don’t have the resources of top authors, but I believe even those of us with limited finances can aid in this fight, and it is a fight. To my mind, the only way we’re going to make it stop, is to stand up to the big online booksellers and force them to adhere to anti-plagiarism policies on their sites.

What Can We Do?

The first step is educating writers and readers. Share blog posts like Nora’s and CaffeintedFae’s on your social media accounts with the hashtags #CopyPasteCris and #WritersAgainstPlagiarism. Let’s gather an army of legitimate authors and lovers of words to protest the lack of policing of plagiarism by online retailers. Let’s stand together to stop these liars and thieves from profiting off the hard work of others and making it difficult for honest, hardworking writers to succeed.

As Nora suggests, name and shame anyone you find perpetrating and profiting from these schemes and scams. If we don’t stand up, stand united, it doesn’t stop.

Stop buying 99 cent books or downloading free books. Some of these are the books scammers are putting out and many of them are works by legitimate authors struggling to compete in an extremely difficult field. As authors, our work is more valuable than 99 cents. Giving it away for free or at a cheap price, doesn’t help and it certainly doesn’t pay the bills. By purchasing cheap or downloading free books, we’re feeding the scammers and encouraging the big booksellers to allow them to flourish.

Sign this petition emploring online bookstores to adopt and enforce anti-plagiarism policies on their websites.

Stand up, stand together, #WritersAgainstPlagiarism.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Wendy Hewlett

New Year’s Eve at Home

Caring for a senior, whether as a professional caregiver or as the spouse or adult child of a senior who needs care, takes a lot of energy any time of the year. The holidays are no different, so making sure you get the downtime you need and the celebration of the fresh start of a new year are both important. Creating fun New Years Eve festivities doesn’t need to be a highly involved and complicated process. Combining a special occasion with the day-to-day needs of taking care of a senior citizen honors both the holiday and your dedication to care.

Plan the Party

Everyone likes to feel needed, so include your senior in the planning process. Ask him what he remembers from years past, what he liked and didn’t like. Set him to work writing a shopping list for you that includes favorite snacks, beverages, and fun novelty New Years Eve hats. Decide what you’ll wear to add a touch of festivity, and plan to add some sparkle to your senior’s outfit. If possible, enlist help with the actual shopping, whether your helper does the shopping or stays with your senior while you leave for fresh air.

Explore the Memories

New Years Eve is often a time of reflection. Gather old albums and framed photographs from around the house and take your time looking at them with your senior. Listen to the stories the photos draw from her memories. It’s so easy to forget that she used to be a young, vibrant teenager, with her entire life’s hopes and dreams in front of her. If possible, have another person there as scribe to record your senior’s memories. Ask questions, not about dates, but about how she felt when it rained, how the watermelon tasted, what her first kiss was like.

Rediscover the Music

Find a music station on the Internet that plays music from your senior’s favorite musical era. Stations playing every genre imaginable are available on sites such as Shoutcast, Spotify, or iHeartRadio. Playing “Name that Tune” gets everyone into the music and gives your senior a chance to shine.

The Ball Drops

The highlight of every New Years Eve is the dropping of the ball in Times Square in New York City. If it’s not feasible to stay up until midnight, find a video of the ball dropping in years past on YouTube and watch it on your time. Another option is to celebrate New Years with a completely different time zone than yours, so you’re celebrating at 3 pm instead of midnight.

No matter when or how you celebrate, wear your silly New Years hats and raise a glass of champagne, sparkling cider, or other beverage to toast good wishes new year.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Joseph Adsilg

Book Review – The Sanctuary by Raymond Khoury

The Sanctuary by Raymond Khoury was intriguing to say the least. The idea that the aging process can be cured like any common disease is an interesting one. In The Sanctuary, Raymond hypothesises that cell degeneration (aging) is caused by outside forces, such as free radicals and wear and tear. In essence, if you could find a way to stop that from happening, humans would be virtually immortal.

The story line was very well done, and the characters were interesting, although fairly predictable. I believe Raymond tries to have the same writing style as Dan Brown, but in my humble opinion, he doesn’t do as good a job as Dan.

The worst thing about The Sanctuary is that it takes a long, long time to get to the point. There are an inordinate amount of chase scenes and shoot-outs, which ruined it for me a little bit. I don’t mind a bit of violence, but when one man can outshoot 6, I find it a tad ridiculous. When they can outshoot that many people more than once, it becomes even more ridiculous.

When I first started reading the book, I thought that it was going to be just another book about chasing a mysterious relic of unusual, Godlike power. While in some sense, that is what this book is about, it is deeper than that.

If you like historical fiction that’s jam packed with car chases, diabolical villains, shoot-outs and action, then you can do worse than buying The Sanctuary.

My Comprehensive Rating for The Sanctuary

Plot-4/5

Writing Style-3/5

Characters-3/5

Overall, I would personally give it three and a half stars out of five. Raymond Khoury is certainly here to stay, and by reading this book, I can see why.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Michael Arthur Moore

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