How to Be a Happy Writer is a workshop. (And, yes, I'd be happy to take the workshop on the road and bring to your community and/or to provide you with details about the next online offering of the course. Just drop me a line and we can discuss the possibilities.)
But Happy Writer is so much more than that.
It is a way of life....
And now it's a radio show, too! (Or at least it was. How to Be a Happy Writer aired every other Wednesday morning during the 2014-2015 broadcast season at Trent Radio in Peterborough, Ontario.) The show may be over, but the radio archive lives on. Listen in below.....
Show 1 : How to be Miserable
Aired: September 24, 2014
What makes for an unhappy writer? Writer's block and projects from hell, for starters. Writers Angie Gallop and Jane Langille share their wisdom on the writing life. Download the entire show or read this week's essay about writer's block. This week's writing song of the week was My Baby Loves a Bunch of Authors by Moxy Fruvous. (For copyright reasons, we can't include music in the show archives.)
Show 2: Finding and Keeping Dream Clients
Aired: October 8, 2014
It's a lot easier to be a happy writer if you're working on projects that matter to you for clients who value what you bring to the table. In this episode of the show, writers (and editors!) Lisa Collier Cool and Lori Bamber offer advice on being the kind of writer that editors turn to again and again. Download the entire show or read this week's essay about opportunities versus non-opportunities. This week's writing song of the week wasn't actually a song at all. It was former US Poet Laureate Billy Collins reading his poem Workshop. This week's writing resource was the PRX Remix radio app -- a source of endless ideas and inspiration.
Show 3: The S-Word: Success
Aired: October 22, 2014
How do you define success for yourself when you're a writer? That's one of the questions I asked Sarah Selecky (short fiction author, writing instructor, and Trent grad) during a recent conversation. Download a copy of the show to eavesdrop on our conversation and to listen to my review of Ralph Keyes' book The Courage to Write. Oh yeah -- this week's writing song of the week is Love in the Library by Jimmy Buffett.
Show 4: Reconnecting with Your Passion for Writing
Aired: November 5, 2014
Do you remember what it was about writing that made you want to become a writer in the first place? That's a question I tackle in this episode of the show. I also chat with Gordon Graham, founder of That White Paper Guy and author of White Papers for Dummies, about what writers need to know about marketing. And I sing the praises of two of my favourite Canadian writers' organizations: The Writers' Union of Canada and the Professional Writers Association of Canada. This week's writing song of the week is My Rolling Chair by Krystian Dell. Enjoy!
Show 5: DIY Happiness
Aired: November 19, 2014
There are some things that are worth outsourcing to others. (Brain surgery comes to mind.) But when it comes to happiness, self-reliance is definitely the way to go. That's the theme of this episode of the show: DIY happiness. I talk to three successful freelancers -- Christie Aschwanden, Gordon Graham, and Lisa Collier Cool -- to get their best advice on making career choices that lead to greater happiness and fulfilment. I round out the show with the writing resource of the week (The Review Review) and the writing song of the week (I am aglow by Sarah Harmer).
Show 6: Writing Resolutions
Aired: November 5, 2014
'Tis the time of year to (1) hope that you've been good enough to score a sack full of books from Santa; and (2) to start making writing resolutions for the New Year. What types of writing resolutions are you planning to make this year? And how do you actually get resolutions to stick? Those are the two main themes of this week's show -- our last show for 2014. Happy holidays! See you when we return in January.
Show 7: Writing Literary Fiction: An Interview with Novelist and Short Story Author Michelle Berry
Aired: January 14, 2015
We kicked off the New Year with an interview with literary fiction author and creative writing instructor Michelle Berry, whose latest book is Interference -- a book that has been described as "a literary hockey game." (Hey, you can't get much more Peterborough than that.) Michelle talked about the joys and challenges of writing, the nuts-and-bolts of submitting your work to literary magazines, and the importance of connecting with other writers. Have a listen.....
Show 8: The Renaissance Freelancer: Other Career and Revenue-Boosting Opportunities for Writers
Aired: January 28, 2015
Kathy Buckworth has managed to leverage her platform as an author into varied and lucrative career offshoots as a broadcaster, a brand spokesperson, and a marketing consultant. I talked to her about career offshoots for writers and how to figure out which opportunities are right for you. Here's what she had to say.
Show 9: A Writer in the Family
Aired: February 11, 2015
Trent University English literature professor Joanne Findon grew up knowing that there was a writer in the family -- her great-grandmother Sarah Jameson Craig. She recently spoke to me about what she learned from reading her great-grandmothers diaries and about the book she has just written about those discoveries (Seeking Our Eden: The Dreams and Migrations of Sarah Jameson Craig, McGill-Queens University Press). Listen in....
Show 10: Writers and Social Media
Aired: March 11, 2015
Part of being a happy author is having a publishing contract -- and key to securing that publishing contract is having what editors like to refer to as a strong author platform. One of the major planks in any author's platform these days is social media. And that was the focus of my conversation with writer and social media consultant Anne MacLachlan.
Show 11: Writers and Podcasting
Aired: March 25, 2015
Continuing the discussion about writers and social media, this episode of How to Be a Happy Writer focuses on writers and podcasting. I spoke with communications consultant and podcasting guru Donna Papacosta about what's involved in launching a successful podcast and how bestselling authors like novelist Terry Fallis and business writer Scott Stratten have used podcasting to create powerful platforms for themselves. Have a listen....
Show 12: Self-Publishing
Aired: April 8, 2015
In this, the final episode of the season, I talk to award-winning author Mary W. Walters about the do's and don'ts of self-publishing, why self-publishing is becoming an increasingly popular option for authors at all stages of their careers, and why she chose to self-publish her most recent book, Rita Just Wants to be Thin. Here's what she had to say. Note: You can learn more about the ins and outs of self-publishing by reading Mary's blog, The Militant Writer.