Steamboat Supporting Literacy

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The reading of all good books is like conversation with the finest men of the past centuries.” ~ Descartes 

International Literacy Day is just around the corner.  Here in Steamboat Springs, Colorado  two literary events are planned for September 9th and September 10th.  On Friday, September 9th, the meet-up group SHe Writes Steamboat is hosting the Colorado Independent Publishers Association for an event open to the public at the Bud Werner Memorial Library. www.steamboatlibrary.org.

The event will be fulfilling a need for education about publishing options including the dynamic, growing industry of independent publishing and e-books. Non-traditional publishing (independent publishing) now represents over 50% of all publishing revenue and it is providing a more sustainable way to publish. For more information on the event, please go to http://bit.ly/pdUNxz

On Saturday, September 10th  the 18th annual Literary Sojourn http://bit.ly/pMfxl9   will be held at the Sheraton Hotel Resort in Steamboat. More than 500 readers arrive yearly from all over the country to attend this celebration. Notable authors in attendance this year will include: Jennifer Egan, Peter Matthiessen, Paula McLain, Julie Orringer, Jim Shepard and Julia Glass. The Literary Sojourn typically sells out early.

On September 8th, communities around the globe will recognize this International Literacy Day by bringing awareness to others that there are many who can not read. In fact:

  • One in 6 Adults are Illiterate
  • 67.4 million children do not attend school or have dropped out
  • 796 million adults lack minimum reading skills

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and their partners such as reading associations and libraries are promoting this day with literacy day projects. This year there is special emphasis on technology paired with literacy.

Check to see if there are any special events to celebrate UNESCOs International Day of Literary at your local library. Or become involved, as a concerned citizen, to raise people’s awareness that high rates of literacy build strong societies and a better, more sustainable and peaceful world.

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I Wish Upon A Star

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Some people come into our lives, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never the same.” -Franz Peter Schubert 

Three years ago, when I moved to a new community, I met a woman my age and her husband and three boys at church. She and her husband were given the responsibility and honor of raising a special needs son. When we first met, she talked with  me about their family’s involvement with the Special Olympics and what their volunteer efforts have meant to their entire family. They have found such enjoyment in the athletic events, the camaraderie felt between Special Olympians and other families with special needs children. She visited our Kiwanis Club and described the mission of the Special Olympics, too. http://bit.ly/oDJ4n3.

As time has gone by our friendship has grown closer. We have had meaningful talks about her special son, and how God has endowed him with the ability to communicate with others about faith in very unique and profound ways. 

The other day, I began to think what an opportune time it is for parents, families and individuals to share stories of special needs children who are making their distinctive mark on the world. The dynamic and growing world of independent publishing provides a fulfilling platform for teaching other families about the lessons and gifts their special needs children contribute to their family’s life. 

I wish upon a star that more families everywhere will find the means and a voice to tell their stories so others will better understand the joys and challenges of raising special needs children. 

 For more information on how ordinary people are telling extraordinary stories by educating, inspiring and informing others through non-traditional books and films, there is a new 18 minute on-line webinar published by the Colorado Independent Publishers Association that discusses the basics of independent publishing. Please visit http://bit.ly/oIkV2g.

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“Explosive Growth” says Bowker

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The great thing in the world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving.” ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes 

We are breaking away from our Friday film routine today because finally, I have found what I have been looking for. The storehouse of all publishing statistics, Bowker, has finally released their numbers for the year 2010. And it is indeed fulfilling news! 

Traditional publishing grew a 5% last year, whereas, “non-traditional publishing” continued along its path of “explosive growth” says Bowker. There were 1,033,065 non- traditionally published books put out into the marketplace in 2009 and these figures more than doubled in 2010 to 2,776,260, thanks in part to the availability of print on demand. The majority of these non-traditional titles are sold and marketed over the internet and are about “micro-niche” subjects. One can safely say, people are looking for publications that are different and unique. To read the entire Bowker report, please go to http://bit.ly/mBW02G

Although e-book sales are exceeding the sales of paperback books, http://huff.to/5f6hAJ, books in print are by no means a thing of the past. Many self-publishing authors and independent publishers (otherwise known as non-traditional publishers) opt for selling both print and e-books, so their presence is known in both digital markets and brick and mortar stores, libraries, colleges and other retail environments. 

So that’s the latest word folks, on this ever changing and fascinating world of publishing in this 21st century. We will see what next week brings.

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Ergo! Readers Reign Supreme!

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Consider the postage stamp:  its usefulness consists in the ability to stick to one thing till it gets there.”  ~Josh Billings

When I began this blog site, All Things Fulfilling, I had arbitrarily set a goal of reaching 10,000 readers. Guess what? Yesterday I hit the mark! What a fulfilling day this is!

 I knew before starting this blogsite  there were folks searching for  specialists in e-commerce and e-marketing for independent publishers. I was also well aware that writers, artists, filmmakers, musicians, educators, professionals and other “creative types” were becoming ever more interested in the industry called “independent publishing or non-traditional publishing.” But, I really was not sure how this blog site would be received. The result has been very gratifying!

I owe a huge Thank You to every reader of All Things Fulfilling. Each of one of you make blogging worthwhile. Whether you live in Steamboat Springs, Colorado or reside somewhere else around the globe, we are essentially one big community of people who believe in the power of independent thoughts, words and views. 

 I’ve enjoyed the journey of reaching 10,000 readers. I appreciate the comments and  discussions I have had with a community of people who share the same interests as I do. There will be more exciting news from All Things Fulfilling in the coming months so stay tuned!

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Patiently Waiting for Bowker

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All human wisdom is summed up in two words – wait and hope.”  ~ Alexandre Dumas Pere 

The April 15th income tax filing deadline has come and gone. But last Friday, income tax was not at all what I was pre-occupied with. Rather it was publishing statistics that were at the top of my list. I am wondering – is the non-traditional publishing industry still continuing to grow? 

Typically, after the first quarter of the New Year, www.Bowker.com, the storehouse for all bibliographical information, releases its report on the health of the publishing industry for the previous year. On Friday I researched on-line to see whether the 2010 statistics had yet been made available. I can not find them. But I am hopeful that when the truth is known, it will be as positive as for the year 2010 as it was the year before. 

When the 2009 reports were made known in April 2010, I was astonished to learn that despite our country’s economic downturn, the independent publishing industry (non-traditional publishing) had grown at an aggressive rate – up 181% between 2008 and 2009. However, traditional publishing remained flat. 

I am going to cut www.Bowker.com some slack and be patient. After all, just because they released their figures last year by the 15th of April, does not mean I should expect it again this year. It is not even the end of the first quarter yet! 

Perhaps I am justified in thinking optimistically. In business, bad news usually arrives on Fridays. I am going to take the fact that statistics were not published on Friday the 15th, as a positive sign.  What is that terribly over-used expression? “Good things come to those who wait?”

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Puzzle Pieces in Place

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“Writing is mentally stimulating; it’s like a puzzle that makes you think all the time.”
~
Stephanie Zimbalist 

I like to put together jigsaw puzzles, and until I get every last piece into place, I can not rest. When that final part has been put into place, what a fulfilling feeling that is! 

A few weekends ago, I spoke with authors and independent publishers who were visiting exhibit booths at the Colorado Independent Publishers Association “College” www.cipabooks.com. The visitors attending the trade industry event were looking for all the missing puzzle pieces to complete their publishing project. They were in various stages of the process. 

Some had begun to envision their writing project but had yet to put a single piece into place. They knew that gaining insight into the entire process, prior to beginning the task, was a wise thing to do. 

Others had completed the writing process, and were looking for the next puzzle piece to put into place. They were searching for folks who could add “spit and polish” to their rough draft.

Many had every part of the puzzle in place, except the final. They had come to learn more about how to sell and effectively market their finished product. Like most non-traditional publishers they were seeking information on selling books, film and music over the internet. E-marketing is an essential puzzle piece that fits well into the independent publishing game. 

Understanding how the last piece of the puzzle, “the internet marketing part” is the connector in the over-all picture of e-commerce is so important. This marketing piece, seldom well-understood,  has added a whole new dimension to selling over the world-wide-web. 

If you have never had experience in fitting this piece of the puzzle into your company’s marketing plans, help is available.  Start by locating a company that specializes in e-commerce and e-marketing for independent publishers. It is essential that all the internet marketing  pieces are put into place  correctly so that your potential buyers can find just what they are looking for.This blog brought to you by www.CornerstoneFulfillmentService.com.

 

In the Pilot Seat

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“If you do not look at things on a large scale, it will be difficult to master strategy.”         ~ Miyamoto Murshashi
 
 People are choosing to independently publish books, films and music because they have more control in all facets of publishing process. http://bit.ly/94IUo4.  It is fulfilling when you are in command of the vehicle that you are steering. The vehicle is your media, powered by independent words, images and audio sounds.

As pilot of your publishing project, your responsibility lies in the take-off (pre-publication planning), the trip from destination to destination (producing the publication from start to finish) and the safe landing (getting the finished publication into the hands of the consumer). 

As an independent publisher, it is important to remember that each stage of the journey from take-off to landing is integral to the end result. Keeping the momentum going is a challenge that all independent publishers face. A co-pilot for different legs of the journey is helpful when your energy lags, for when you begin to loose steam or enter into unknown territory. 

There is no need to sojourn alone. Freelance vendors in every part of the publishing process can provide you with services to help you throughout the trip – from putting a solid, well rounded marketing plan into place, to selling your book on the internet and through other channels, to assisting you with reaching communities of people who are interested in knowing about the publishing project that you have been piloting.

Step into the pilot’s seat with confidence in knowing that in this day and age of publishing, there is plenty of help available for those who decide to take a non-traditional route.

 This blog brought to you by www.CornerstoneFulfillmentService.com.