Ramblings

Where to Learn More About Blogging

(This post contains affiliate links, which means I may make a small commission at no extra charge to you if you click on a link and make a purchase. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I greatly appreciate all purchases you make using these links. Thank you!)

When I began what I have been referring to as “my writing adventure”, I just knew I wanted to write. And blogging seemed like a good option at the time. I could write what I wanted (as a hobby) and possibly even make a little money on the side.

I ended up doing a lot of research on blogging and creating a website. I even took a class on creating my own website at a community college. And I started my own blog.

I wrote about personal finance (ways to save money, children’s birthday parties on a budget, etc.), homeschooling (curriculum reviews, field trip ideas and planning, and more), organization, and simple crafts to do at home. I enjoyed writing all of the posts, but I quickly learned there is a lot more to blogging than simply writing if I wanted to actually make any money.

Growing Money

Image by Nattanan Kanchanaprat from Pixabay

Are you interested in learning more about blogging?

Whether you are just thinking of creating a blog of your own or you are a veteran blogger looking for additional tips for monetizing your site, email marketing, branding, building traffic, and more, you may be interested in the latest bundle put together by Ultimate Bundles.

It is called The Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019). And it’s only available for 6 days (10/2/2019-10/7/2019).

The Genius Blogger's Toolkit

The Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019)

The Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) has a total of 26 eBooks, 55 eCourses, 7 workbooks and printables, 5 templates, and stock photo collections. That’s over 90 products!

Get all of the details for the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) here.

You can learn (more) about affiliate marketing, branding, building a blog, content creation & promotion, creating & selling products, design, email marketing, Facebook & Twitter, Finance & legalese, getting started with blogging, Instragram, Pinterest, monetization, podcasting & vlogging, productivity & organization, SEO & traffic, and tech & support with these products.

This bundle has a value of over $7,000 if each product was purchased individually. But it is available now, for only 6 days, for the price of $97 (almost $1 per product listed in the bundle).

Does it sound too good to be true?

I thought the same thing last year and was a little hesitant to purchase the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2018 edition). But I’m glad I did. I was very happy with the contents, price, and customer service (when I reached out with a question I had).

Although I did not use all of the products from the bundle last year, I definitely got my money’s worth. The entire bundle cost less than some of the courses on their own!

Just so you know, the 2019 Genius Blogger’s Toolkit offers completely different resources than the 2018 edition, and I have not personally seen any of the products in the 2019 edition.

Get all of the details for the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) here.

Included Items Valued at More Than the Cost of the Bundle

All of these items are included in the 2019 edition Genius Blogger’s Toolkit for the price of $97, yet they are priced individually at more than the cost of the entire bundle:

  • Virtual Assistant Jumpstart: How I Went From $0 to $3000 in Three Months (eCourse) by Alexandrea Harrelson ($297)
  • Supercharge Your Marketing (eBook) by Lori Riddle ($197)
  • Become a Blog Boss (eCourse) by Lynne G. Caines ($497)
  • Bloggers’ Secrets (eCourse) by Kelan & Brittany Kline ($497)
  • Social Boom (eCourse) by Ruth Soukup ($297)
  • The Blogging Machine (eCourse) by Sandra Clayton ($199)
  • How to Grow Your Blogging Income Through Facebook Ads (eCourse) by Jessica Festa ($149)
  • eBook Bestseller Bootcamp: The Ultimate Self-Publishing Course for Bloggers (eCourse) by Ana Savuica ($197)
  • Affiliate Terms and Conditions Template and Disclosure Swipe Copy (Template) by Elizabeth Stapleton ($98)
  • Goodbye to 9 to 5 (eCourse) by Sagan Morrow ($197)
  • Intentional Blog (eCourse) by Jeff Goins ($197)
  • Instagram Content System (eCourse) by Helene Sula ($99)
  • Health and Wellness Bloggers NEED to Know (eCourse) by Leesa Klich
  • A Blog Flipping Masterclass: How to Develop and Sell Your Blog for Profit (eCourse) by Chelsea Clarke ($127)
  • Pin Practical Influence (eCourse) by Monica Froese ($197)

Get all of the details for the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) here.

Included Items Valued at the Same Cost as the Bundle

And here are some more products that are included within the bundle that are each priced at $97 if they were to be purchased individually:

  • Affiliate Promo Prep (eCourse) by Matt McWilliams
  • Designing with Typography (eCourse) by Kimi Kinsey
  • Blogging Camp (eCourse) by Julie Chickery, Liz Wilcox, Lindsay McKenzie, and Camille Attell
  • Create Your Perfect Opt In Freebie in Four Simple Steps (eCourse) by Vanessa Ryan
  • List Building Insanity (eCourse) by Brianna Berner
  • Kickstart Your Blog (eCourse) by Raelyn Tan
  • Start a Blog the Right Way (eCourse) by Anna Sokyrka
  • Pop and Sizzle Websites: Guide to WordPress and Divi Theme (eCourse) by Julia McPherson
  • Content Strategy Toolkit for Service Based Businesses (eCourse) by Jocelyn Kopac

Get all of the details for the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) here.

Even More Items Included in the Bundle

Of course, there are many other resources included within the bundle that are priced at less than the cost of the entire bundle. Those include items such as:

  • Affiliate Marketing, Simplified! (eCourse) by Catherine Rosales ($47)
  • Amazon Affiliate Affluence: How to Make Money as an Amazon Affiliate (eBook) by Dale Persons ($25)
  • The Authentic Blog Project (eBook) by Hannah Rinaldie ($24.99)
  • Building Your Profitable Blog (eBook) by Emma Quay ($28)
  • Sales Page Starter (eCourse) by Emma Bates ($29)
  • Content Creation 101 (eCourse) by Crystal Paine ($37)
  • Graphic Design for Bloggers: Design Principles for Online Marketing (eCourse) by Kara Fidd ($47)
  • The Blogger’s Finance Workshop (eCourse) by Elizabeth Harrin ($27)
  • Moving from Popular to Profitable (Workshop) by Talaat & Tai McNeely ($47)
  • Next Level Pin Designs: Everything You Need to Know to Design NEXT LEVEL Pinterest Pins for FREE in Canva (eCourse) by Nadalie Bardo ($49)
  • Live Streaming 101: Start Live Streaming with Knowledge and Confidence (eCourse) by Vicky Lashenko ($47)
  • Podcast Launch Toolkit (eCourse) by Jenny Suneson ($47)
  • Podcasting for Bloggers (eBook) by Kara Carrero ($9.99)
  • YouTube TakeOff Quick-Start Course: How to Start a Channel with a Growth Trajectory (eCourse) by Jennifer Maker ($47)
  • SEO Playbook for Bloggers (eBook) by Niki Robinson ($49)
  • and more…

Get all of the details for the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) here.

Money Back Guarantee

Not only does the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) include all of the resources listed above (and more) for the price of only $97 (and no, that is not only two simple or three simple payments of $97…that is only one payment of $97!), but Ultimate Bundles offers a 30 day money back guarantee. Anyone who purchases the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit has 30 days to receive a full refund if they are not satisfied with the bundle!

Get all of the details for the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) here.

Optional Cheat Sheets- Free Only Until Tomorrow

I know receiving so many resources all at one time can be overwhelming! Last year, after purchasing the 2018 edition, I spent a lot of time writing a list of each product, how they were presented, and what they were about. From that list, I was able to prioritize which items I wanted to view first. It’s amazing how breaking something into smaller steps is much less intimidating!

Well, Ultimate Bundles has done all of that work for you! They created cheat sheets that break down each of the products, so you can easily prioritize and focus on the products you are the most interested in. Ultimate Bundles says the cheat sheets “are a great way to learn key insights faster so you can see results sooner” and they are “like CliffsNotes”.

Anyone who orders the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) by Thursday, October 3rd at midnight (ET) for the $97 will receive the cheat sheets for free. After Thursday, they will be available for $50 as an extra.

Keep in mind the cheat sheets are not mandatory to purchase. I did not purchase the cheat sheets last year, but that is why I spent so much time creating my own sheets. Getting them for free would be very beneficial and save a lot of time and headache!

Some Tips

I like to keep things organized, so I did the following (after creating the sheets) to try to make things easier:

  • created a folder on a flashdrive to save all of the eBooks
  • once I finished reading an eBook, I resaved it with an X at the beginning of the name, so I knew I had read it
  • used a single notebook to keep all of my notes from all of the resources
  • created a password sheet to track all of the passwords needed to access some of the resources
  • created a folder in my bookmarks manager to bookmark all of the resource pages
  • crossed off all of the resources I was not interested in seeing

The Genius Blogger’s Toolkit (2019) is available for purchase here for only $97 until Monday, October 7th. Is this something that you would be interested in?

And Finally

Well, the blog that I had started years ago ended up getting deleted after writing over 30,000 words in the course of about 6 months. I never did make any money off of it, but I still feel like I learned a lot.

In the meantime, when I’m not busy homeschooling, volunteering, and spending time with family, I hope to continue my writing adventure as I create journals, write children’s books, write articles for magazines, maintain my author website (with occasional blog posts), attend writer’s meetings, and more.

Do you have a blog? If so, why did you create it and what motivates you to write it?

 

 

 

Ramblings

Do You Really Need to Offer a Freebie to Have an Email List?

(This post contains affiliate links, which means I may make a small commission at no extra charge to you if you click on a link and make a purchase. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I greatly appreciate all purchases you make using these links. Thank you!)

A few months ago I wrote about a book called Making a Living Writing Books for Kids by Laura Purdie Salas, which I highly recommend for children’s book writers.

In that post I stated the following:

“Some things mentioned in the book that I have heard over and over again yet I have not taken the leap to complete just yet include creating an email list, joining Twitter, and doing school visits.

All three of these are things I keep thinking about, but I keep telling myself I will do them if (hopefully when) I get a traditionally published book deal. In the meantime, I have my reasons (really just excuses) to not do each of them.

Baby steps. I will get there eventually.”

Well, I finally took the steps to create an email list. No, I didn’t get a traditionally published book deal (I wish!), but I decided it was finally time.

Emails Image by Muhammad Ribkhan from Pixabay

Image by Muhammad Ribkhan from Pixabay

Please don’t roll your eyes at my excuses, but creating an email list has been something I have been putting off for quite a while because …

… according to the CAN-SPAM Act, all business emails must include a valid physical mailing address. I didn’t feel comfortable putting my own home address on the bottoms of all of the emails, which left me with the option of renting a PO Box.

I have had a PO box before. Infact, the house I previously lived in did not have a mailbox, so a PO Box was mandatory. I have gotten so spoiled at my current location with not having to drive to the post office to check my mail, and I wasn’t sure if having a PO box would be a worthwhile investment. Would anyone actually sign up for my email list?

Well, if you sign up for my email list (which I now have as an option), you will see that I now have of a PO box.

Before creating an email list, I did some research (that’s just what I do!).

I’ve read many websites saying you must include a free incentive for someone to sign up for your email list. It could be a download, an ebook, an entire section of your website, etc. Essentially, you offer someone something for free with the catch that they must enter their email address. And voila, they are now part of your email list. Waa haa haa (my odd evil laugh).

Some websites have people sign up for their email list in order to get access to certain sections of their website, which I figured out how to do for my Fun Extras page. But when I went to do that, I actually felt bad. If someone wants to print off free coloring pages or activity ideas, I want them to be able to do that without any strings attached.

So, I did something that goes against the advice of all of the websites I read about creating email lists: I simply offered to provide updates on my journals, books, and writings. I’m not saying that offering something for free is bad. I’m just saying that is not what I am doing at this time…unless you count free updates as my free offer!

Brigitte Brulz Updates Logo

I don’t want people to sign up only because they want something for free and have no interest in anything else. I also don’t want to be holding back all of the coloring pages, activity ideas, and more for people who aren’t comfortable with providing their email address.

I know I’ve signed up to other people’s email lists simply because I was interested in hearing updates from them and wanted to know when they had more information available. I hope others will do the same for my email updates.

I’ve also signed up to email lists just for the free download and then unsubscribed right away. Yes, I’m like that. I get enough emails as it is. There is no point in me remaining on someone’s email list if I am not interested in anything else they are offering. And they don’t have to continue sending emails to me for no reason. That’s what I hope to avoid.

Unsubscribe Image by Denis Bogdan from Pixabay 

Image by Denis Bogdan from Pixabay

I even spent quite a while coming up with this as my email sign-up text:

“To Join or Not To Join…

Many websites make you enter your contact information for a FREE product. Not mine. Instead, you are welcome to enter your contact information if you would like to be kept up to date on any added fun extras, books, and journals created by me. I would love for you to join my email list! But, even if you don’t subscribe, you are still welcome to enjoy all of the FREE coloring pages, activity ideas, and more on FUN EXTRAS. You’ll just miss out on learning about all the new fun things as they are added!” 

Somehow, that doesn’t pop up anywhere on my website. If you’ve read this far, though, you’ve probably seen what actually does pop up. Thankfully, I was able to figure that out (I think!).

Within a couple of days of adding the subscriber popup form, I had one subscriber (who I don’t even know). Yay!

If you are interested in receiving updates about my writing adventures, journals, books, and fun extras, please sign up for my email list. I hope to send updates to all of my subscribers’ inboxes with a monthly e-newsletter (as long as I can figure it out). I have no intent on bombarding inboxes with email after email!

Subscribe Image

Image by Harshahars from Pixabay

Unfortunately, every time I try to install the email sign-up form within this post, it doesn’t work properly. (This is another excuse I’ve had for not creating an email list…I’m not very knowledgeable with all of the computer technology, and I knew it would take a lot of time to figure it all out.)

I am still trying to determine if there is a way for me to install a subscribe form on this post using the products I have. In the meantime, you should be able to sign up for my email list on any page or post on my website when the form pops up, which should happen when you have scrolled about half way down the page. Otherwise, you are welcome to email me and let me know you are interested in signing up for my email list. I’m sorry for any inconvenience as I figure this all out!

If you aren’t interested in receiving updates from me, that’s okay, too. Thank you for reading this far!

So, do you really need to offer a freebie to have an email list? I guess we’ll see.

What do you think?

Crafts and Projects · Writing Appearances

What Does Cotton Ball Transfer from Room to Room Mean?

I’ve enjoyed writing a number of posts for Hands On As We Grow as a monthly contributor. Completing the activities and projects that I write for them gives me some motivation to do even more fun activities with my daughters. It also keeps the creative juices flowing as I try to come up with new ideas.

Recently, I was asked to come up with an activity that involved a “cotton ball transfer from room to room”. If you were asked to do that, what would you do?

I wasn’t quite sure what to do at first. I ended up grabbing some painter’s tape and started making designs from my kitchen to my living room.

From there, I invented an activity that ended up being great practice for color recognition (different colored clothespins), counting (cotton balls in shapes), shape recognition (how many sides), gross motor skills (walk the lines), and fine motor skills (using clothespins).

Even my cats wanted to check out the activity, although I don’t think they learned anything!

You can find more information about the cottonball transfer challenge for kids on Hands On As We Grow here.

 

For more posts about Hands On As We Grow writings, check out:

Celebrate National Penguin Awareness Day

25+ Books About Owls

Celebrate Dinosaur Day!

Build Sand Castles Inside Using Brown Sugar

Themed Books

22 Children’s Books with Surprise Endings

(This post contains affiliate links, which means I may make a small commission at no extra charge to you if you click on a link and make a purchase. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I greatly appreciate all purchases you make using these links. Thank you!)

I get together with a group of writers once a month to discuss various topics pertaining to children’s books and writing. Oftentimes, we use recent published children’s books as reference. Well, this month, we decided to discuss children’s books with surprise endings.

Tip: If you want to write children’s books, you must read recent children’s books!

I prepared for the meeting by finding multiple books that supposedly had surprise endings. Oddly, the first three or four books my daughters and I read together involved someone or something being eaten as the “surpise ending”.

Here are most of the books with surprise endings that I was able to check out from my library and read. Just a word of caution: You may want to read them ahead of time on your own before reading them to the little ones in your life because some of them were a little disturbing for a young child (in my opinion).

Children’s Books with Surprise Endings

Charlotte and the Rock by Stephen W. Martin

Charlotte finally gets a pet of her own…a pet rock. But is it really just a rock?

Egg Drop by Mini Grey

An egg couldn’t wait to fly. Unfortunately, it attempts to fly. As you know, eggs don’t really fly…or do they? (Spoiler alert: The egg doesn’t fly. It shatters just like its dream of flying, which I found quite depressing for a children’s book.)

I am a Tiger by Karl Newson

Mouse insists he is a tiger until he realizes he is something else. What could that something else be?

It’s Great Being a Dad by Dan Bar-el

Children with great imaginations pretend to be a unicorn (who gets her horn stuck), Bigfoot (who gets his foot stuck), a robot (who has stuck hinges), the Loch Ness Monster, a fairy queen ballerina doctor, and a sneaky flying alligator pirate (who steals the magic wand). Who will save the day?

Polar Bear’s Underwear by Tupera Tupera

Polar Bear doesn’t know where his underwear has gone. He finds many other pairs of underwear, but they are all already being worn by his friends. Where will Polar Bear find his underwear?

Poor Little Guy by Elanna Allen

Will the poor little guy successfully be eaten? The answer may surprise you!

Tadpole’s Promise by Jeanne Willis

A tadpole and caterpillar love each other, but tadpole keeps breaking his promise that he will never change as he slowly transforms into a frog. The caterpillar leaves upset and ends up changing into a butterfly. When she emerges as the butterfly, she decides to give her tadpole (whom she really loves) another chance. Neither she nor the tadpole (which is now a full grown frog) recognizes each other as the butterfly spots the frog. What do you think will happen when the hungry frog sees a butterfly he doesn’t realize is his lovely caterpillar?

Spoiler alert: Frog eats the love of his life without realizing it and spends the rest of his time wondering where his lovely caterpillar could be.

The Bear Ate Your Sandwich by Julia Sarcone-Roach

Did a bear really eat your sandwich? And who is claiming that a bear really ate your sandwich to begin with? I thought this was a cute story.

The Giant Jumperee by Julia Donaldson

All the animals are afraid of “The Giant Jumperee” until one brave Mama Frog shows up. Who is the Giant Jumperee scaring all of the animals?

Toto’s Apple by Mathieu Lavoie

Toto is a worm determined to get the apple. Toto makes many unsuccessful attempts until he finally gets the apple he wants. Unfortunately, the apple isn’t the only thing to get eaten.

Don’t Wake up the Tiger by Britta Teckentrup

Why don’t the animals want the tiger to wake up? What happens if the tiger does wake up?

Eat Pete by Michael Rex

A monster wants to eat a young child named Pete. After having a lot of fun playing with Pete, the Monster finally gives in and (spoiler alert) actually eats the child. But, the monster realizes he isn’t having as much fun on his own. Thankfully, he is able to spit the child back out.

Life on Mars by Jon Agee

A young boy is determined he will find life on Mars. He goes home thinking he is successful, but is he really?

Pardon Me by Daniel Miyares

A bird demands to be alone on what he thinks is a rock. But is it really a rock, and who will get eaten?

This Book Will Not be Fun by Cirocco Dunlap

A mouse is quite adamant that the book will not be fun. Is he right?

You Don’t Want a Unicorn by Ame Dyckman

And why don’t you want a unicorn? For starters, they wreak a lot of havoc.

Good Little Wolf by Nadia Shireen

Good Little Wolf proves he is really a good little wolf but that’s not enough to transform Big Bad Wolf into a good wolf. Big Bad Wolf claims he will stop eating people…tomorrow (after he has already eaten a person).

I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean by Kevin Sherry

Is he really the biggest thing in the ocean? Or is there something even bigger in the ocean that will eat him?

I Want my Hat Back by Jon Klassen

Bear can’t find his hat but realizes he saw his hat on the head of rabbit. But how will he get his hat back? Spoiler alert: Bears eat rabbits (especially those who steal hats)!

The Baby that Roared by Simon Puttock

Mr. and Mrs. Deer really wanted a baby. One day they find a baby on their doorstep, but they don’t know what to do with the “peculiar” baby, so they invite Uncle Duncan (an owl), Auntie Agnes (a bunny), and Dr. Fox over to help with the new baby. Each of them mysteriously disappears, though, until Granny Bear shows up and burps the baby. Will Mr. and Mrs. Deer keep what they have discovered is a little monster?

After the Fall: How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again by Dan Santat

Humpty Dumpty may have been physically put together by the king’s men, but he was emotionally scarred after “The Great Fall”. His new fear of heights kept him from enjoying his favorite things, and he is miserable until “an idea flew by”. Humpty Dumpty finally finds something that makes him happy again and decides to conquer his fear of heights. But what happens once he gets back to the top of the wall?

The Monster at the end of this Book by Jon Stone

And finally…the book at the end of this list. I had completely forgotten about this one (even though I own it) until someone at my writer’s meeting mentioned it. The Monster at the end of this Book is my favorite out of all of these books listed.

Grover pleads with the reader to not turn the pages of the book. He tries (unsuccessfully) to stop the reader from turning the pages because he is afraid of the monster at the end of the book. Who is the monster at the end of the book? That’s an answer that may even surprise Grover!

What makes a surpise ending in a children’s book a surprise ending? Do you have a favorite?

 

For more themed books, check out:

Nonfiction Picture Books for Kids

14 Children’s Books About Teachers

5 Interactive Educational Children’s Books

25 Books About Grandparents

Events · Ramblings

My Experience at the SCBWI Adventures in Nonfiction Conference

(This post contains affiliate links, which means I may make a small commission at no extra charge to you if you click on a link and make a purchase. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I greatly appreciate all purchases you make using these links. Thank you!)

Last year I learned a lot at the SCBWI Adventures in Nonfiction Conference, and I was excited when it was announced that there would be another nonfiction conference this year: Adventures in Nonfiction Part II.

Adventures in Nonfiction Part 2

The conference featured Senior Editor Carolyn Yoder and authors Jacqueline Briggs Martin and Miranda Paul. To prepare for the conference, I read multiple nonfiction books (and fiction books) written by Jacqueline Briggs Martin and Miranda Paul.

The night before the conference, I had the opportunity to go out to dinner with some other conference attendees/authors including Miranda Paul. It was a wonderful experience being able to speak with authors from Wisconsin, Illinios, Minnesota, and Iowa whom I had never met before.

Preconference Dinner

During the conference, I had the pleasure of introducing authors Miranda Paul and Jacqueline Briggs Martin before listening to their presentations.

I came home with a lot of information, multiple pages of notes in a notebook, and a few handouts. I was also really excited to purchase a signed copy of the book Adventures to School: Real Life Journeys of Students from Around the World for my daughters who don’t have quite the adventure getting to school as some of these kids since they are homeschooled!

Adventures to School

It is amazing how much research and work goes into creating books! Miranda and her husband Baptiste Paul worked on Adventures to School together. She mentioned they had an entire room devoted to the research of this book with pictures and notes taped to the walls for each of the countries listed. They had to talk to a lot of people, listen to interviews, find translations, do online research, and more to accurately portray the characters listed in the book.

Even though Adventures to School states “the scenarios in this book are composites and the narrators’ voices are fictionalized…”, it is classified as nonfiction by the Library of Congress. This is actually something Miranda Paul discussed at the conference – how books are classified as nonfiction or fiction.

If you look at the copyright page and it says “juvenile literature”, then it has a nonfiction classification. If it says “juvenile fiction”, then it has been classified as fiction. Interestingly, some libraries don’t follow this classification, and the same book may be located in different areas in different libraries.

At the end of the conference, we had a draw name raffle for attendees to win books written by authors who were present and gracious enough to offer their published books as prizes. There was also an illustrator who graciously gave an illustration of hers as a prize.

SCBWI Conference Book Prizes

The prize books included:

All of the conference attendees had their names placed in a box for a chance to win one of the autographed books. And I won…

I Am Farmer

I Am Farmer: Growing an Environmental Movement in Cameroon, which is another book Miranda Paul worked on with her husband, Baptiste Paul. The two of them actually travelled to Cameroon while doing research for this book!

During the conference, Miranda Paul showed us a great video about Farmer Tantoh that was filmed in Cameroon. You can also watch Meet Farmer Tantoh: Grassroots Environmentalist from Cameroon. Make sure to watch the video all the way to the end for a little chuckle. It’s amazing what Farmer Tantoh has been able to accomplish, and it is wonderful that Baptiste and Miranda Paul took the time to find the truth and write the story.

Here are some more things discussed at the conference by our speakers, who did an outstanding job:

  • what to include in a cover letter
  • bibliographies
  • examples of unique takes on famous subjects or topics
  • differences between primary, secondary, and tertiary sources
  • contacting experts in a field
  • page counts
  • making sure the world is relevant to the character in the story
  • how long it may take for manuscripts to become books
  • different types of nonfiction books
  • how books are classified by Library of Congress
  • format, structure, and style of nonfiction books
  • nonfiction books should not be boring
  • learning how to put our own manuscripts into categories
  • writing multiple versions of the same manuscript until it sounds right
  • self-editing tips
  • back matter
  • age of audience and their developmental milestones
  • hook and hold interest
  • comparable titles
  • who is responsible for cost of research (most of the time, it’s the author)
  • keeping records of sources
  • using all five senses in a book
  • creating a pitch for your manuscript
  • telling the story you are passionate about
  • places to find accurate information
  • how to research
  • having a through-line to your story
  • points of view in nonfiction
  • beginnings of nonfiction
  • biographies

I am so thankful I had the opportunity to go to this nonfiction conference. It gave me some ideas for a manuscript I am currently working on that is technically fiction but has a lot of educational components to it, so I am going to do some additional research, write a bibliography, and create some back matter for it.

What are you doing to learn more about a particular topic?