I dream of being on Oprah. I want to be sitting there in a stylish outfit with a glossy book on my lap, talking about how much I love writing and how I so desperately want to impact the world around me for good. I want to hear her talk about her school for girls in South Africa and I want to share my heart for kids and for families. Then, at the end of the show, I want to give away copies of my book to all of the audience members. :)
Give me five years, ten max. I have determination...and I have a handy little pocketbook on writing to help me along the way. I just finished reading "Writer Mama: How to Raise a Writing Career Alongside Your Kids" by Christina Katz, Portland resident and mother of one.
Katz does a superb job of outlining the ins and outs of the writing and publishing industry. Although she discusses both fiction and non-fiction writing, the book primarily focuses on freelance writing - especially in the "how-to" and "self-improvement" categories. The book is helpful, encouraging, and immediately relevant. Katz provides hands-on activities, insightful sidebars, and lots of great tidbits to help writers stay motivated and on-task.
The content is good, but the "packaging" also helped to solidify the "this is a great book" status for me. You can't tell this from just looking at the cover on Amazon or Overstock, but the book is miniature with colorful, square pages. It's just plain fun and you can easily stick it in your purse or in a diaper bag...an ingenious design for the target market.
If you are a current freelance journalist (that's what Katz recommends that you call yourself, for professionalism's sake) or an aspiring one, I highly recommend that you add this to your Christmas wish list or your next big order from an online bookseller.
Stay tuned for an intimate Q & A with the author and your chance to win a copy of the book in early 2008 (In the meantime, check out Katz' blog for inspiration).