Monday, October 29, 2007

Susan Tyler Hitchcock's FRANKENSTEIN! reviewed in Washington Post Book World

In case you missed it, here's The Washington Post's review of Susan Tyler Hitchcock's "delightful cultural history" of Frankenstein's monster:

It's Alive!
We've been remaking this monster since he first got off the table.
Reviewed by Louis Bayard
The Washington Post
Sunday, October 28, 2007; Page BW05


A Cultural History

By Susan Tyler Hitchcock

Norton. 392 pp. $25.95

"I saw -- with shut eyes, but acute mental vision, -- I saw the pale student of unhallowed arts kneeling beside the thing he had put together. I saw the hideous phantasm of a man stretched out, and then, on the working of some powerful engine, show signs of life, and stir with an uneasy, half vital motion."

A monster wasn't the only thing stirring in the dreams of teenaged Mary Godwin. A vocation was awakening, too. The lover of poet Percy Shelley and daughter of ur-feminist Mary Wollstonecraft, young Mary knew enough of literature and commerce to realize she was on to something. "What terrified me will terrify others," she reasoned, and she was not even half wrong. As Susan Tyler Hitchcock's delightful cultural history reminds us, the monster that Mary fashioned from her slumbers is still alive and kicking: "in our bookstores, on our film and television screens, from morning cartoons to wee-hours rerun movies. He plays roles in advertising and political debate, he appears at public library story hours and on graduate-level reading lists. He is both a joke and a profound ethical dilemma."

But in the beginning, he was the product of a dare, thrown down by Lord Byron in that rainy Geneva summer of 1816: "We will each write a ghost story." Byron and Shelley bowed out, but Mary Godwin found a voice. Drawing on a private brew of philosophy, literature and myth, she discovered probably her most proximate inspiration in the writings of Luigi Galvani, who had used electrical currents to trigger movements in disembodied frog legs. Readers looking for more science than that will have to look elsewhere, and anyone coming to the original story from the Hollywood back lot will be startled to find that Victor Frankenstein's monster, after a brief setback, learns both to speak and read. Goethe, Plutarch and, fittingly enough, Paradise Lost are among the texts he marshals against his creator, who dies unmolested on an Arctic voyage, mourned by the creation he has once again abandoned.

The novel was published in 1818 by Lackington & Allen, "Cheapest Bookseller in the World," and while the reviews were mixed (Walter Scott was among its defenders), readers took to it and began immediately changing it to their liking. Within a year, the monster whom Mary Shelley (by the book's publications, Mary Godwin and Percy Shelley had married) deliberately left nameless was being given the name of its creator. The accretions we associate with Universal Pictures -- angry villagers, bumbling lab assistant, climactic grapple between scientist and science project -- were initially the work of London stage adapters.

By the time Dickens referenced the story in Great Expectations in 1861, " 'Frankenstein' had become a code word for misguided ambition, for new ideas conjured up with good intentions but destined to grow and change beyond all reckoning, ultimately overwhelming those who conceived them." As such, the name could be appropriated by virtually anyone: capitalist, socialist, democrat, imperialist. In an all-too-familiar pattern, Mary Shelley's own creation escaped her, and today we find it used as a shorthand for everything from cereal (Franken Berry) to genetically engineered produce (Frankenfoods).

No one, it seems, can quite agree on what this monster means, and for more than a century, no one could be sure what he looked like -- until director James Whale tapped a minor, 40-something actor named Boris Karloff for the 1931 film adaptation. Karloff's sunken cheeks and deep-set eyes were heaven-sent, but the monster's true auteur was makeup artist Jack Pierce, who deduced that Dr. Frankenstein, being "a scientist but no practicing surgeon," would saw the creature's skull "straight across like a potlid." Pierce decided to "make the monster's head square and flat like a shoe box and dig that big scar across his forehead with the metal clamps holding it together." Add neck bolts, throw in a pair of asphalt worker's boots, and you have the lumbering, lurching beast of a billion Halloween costumes.

You also have the beginning of the end. The trajectory from Karloff to Herman Munster is dismayingly short, and it could be argued that, once Mel Brooks and Abbott and Costello and Frank N. Furter have had a go at you, you're no longer the stuff of nightmares. Each new interpretation vitiates the original's power, with the result that Frankenstein becomes less interesting as it becomes more universal.

With great effort, then, we work our way back to the core text. Clear away, for starters, that business of henchman Fritz dropping the "normal" brain intended for the monster and making do with the one nearest to hand. Whoopsies, it's abnormal! Marty Feldman made antic hay with this in "Young Frankenstein," and it's a deeply silly way to explain the creature's antisocial rages when the circumstances of his birth are reason enough. As Karloff himself pointed out, "The most heartrending aspect of the creature's life was his ultimate desertion by his creator."

We have feminist scholars to thank for placing that loss within the context of Mary Shelley's own life. Seventeen when she first gave birth, she lost three children within four years and had to sit by while her "free-thinking" lover chose pleasure and poetry over child-rearing. The question isn't why she would revolt at the idea of caring for her own creation but, more properly, what parent hasn't? And while we're at it: What child has never felt abandoned? Forget Galvani and his frogs. The real subject of Frankenstein is parents and children and the harm they inflict on each other. "This is our monster," writes Susan Tyler Hitchcock. "To know him is to know ourselves." *

Louis Bayard's most recent book is "The Pale Blue Eye," a novel about Edgar Allan Poe.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Desperately Seeking Cville Transcriber

VA LLLer Rebecca Barns’ s husband is a reference librarian, and a patron asked him how to find a transcriber in Charlottesville who could transcribe dictated memoirs. Does anyone know someone they could recommend? If so, Rebecca will pass the info along.

Contact Rebecca: rbarns1212 (at)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Roanoke Regional Writers' Conference: Be There or Be Square

[I'll be at this conference -- I hope you'll join us. As you read over the bios, you should know that I didn't write my own bio. "Known and respected" sounds a little lame! Ah, well. That's show biz. Also, I don't know whether or not you're a fan of Sharyn McCrumb, but I can tell you that I heard her presentation at a conference several years ago, and she's a remarkably entertaining speaker. I hope you'll spread the word about this conference among your writer friends. -Janis]

The Roanoke Regional Writers Conference will feature 22 well-known writers, mostly from the western half of Virginia, talking about what they know best: writing in many of its forms.

Join us in the evening on Friday September 25 in Fitzpatrick Hall at Roanoke's Jefferson Center for an evening with Sharyn McCrumb and all day Saturday September 26 for the Roanoke Regional Writers Conference!

Friday evening: Sharyn McCrumb, “Writing About Appalachia”
Networking, book signings by the author

Saturday, January 26, 2008 - 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM
Roanoke Regional Writers Conference
Featuring: Sharyn McCrumb, Dan Smith, Nelson Harris, and Tommy Denton

The goal of the conference is to give professional and serious amateur writers and a few select writing students a chance to get to know each other, to learn from each other and to share stories in a relaxed setting.
The classes will be informal and offer an opportunity for interaction among students and teachers.

There will be four classrooms available for the conference, three in the main
Jefferson Center building and one in Fitzpatrick Hall. Classrooms will be assigned at registration.

Conference Schedule

Friday, 7-7:30 p.m. Registration (Fitzpatrick Hall)
7:30-8:15. Sharyn McCrumb, “Writing About Appalachia”

8:30-9 p.m. Networking, book signings by the authors (cash or check only)

Saturday, 8:30-9 a.m. Registration (Fitzpatrick Hall)

Register Online


9 a.m.-9:45 a.m.
Rehearsal Hall: Nelson Harris and Elizabeth Barbour, “Writing Local Histories”
Training Room: Dan Smith, “The Short Essay”
L.L. Rice Hall: Keith Ferrell, “Blogging”
Fitzpatrick Hall: Sandy Smith, “Using Children’s Stories to Make Your Point”

10-10:45 a.m.
Rehearsal Hall: Kurt Rheinheimer, “Short Fiction”
Training Room: Melanie Almeder, “Writing a Poem from Start to Finish”
L.L. Rice Hall: Todd Ristow, “Writing for the Theater”
Fitzpatrick Hall: Cara Modisett, “What Magazine Editors Want”

11-11:45 a.m.
Rehearsal Hall: Donna Dilley, Kathy Surace, “Writing What You Know”
Training Room: Janis Jaquith, “The Radio Essay”
L.L. Rice Hall: Rex Bowman, “Writing About Country People”
Fitzpatrick Hall: Sarah Cox, “Writing About Your Family”

Lunch (soup and sandwich), $6.
Roanoke City Market is four blocks from Jefferson Center and has many good restaurants.

Rehearsal Hall: Sandy Smith, “Emphasizing Your Point with Stories”
Training Room: Dan Smith, “The Memoir”
L.L. Rice Hall: Gene Marrano, “Freelance Writing in This Region”
Fitzpatrick Hall: Tom Field, “Writing Persuasively and Getting Feedback”

Rehearsal Hall: Darrell Laurent, “Finding Stories in Your Back Yard”
Training Room: Karen Adams, “Writing for Children”
L.L. Rice Hall: John Montgomery, “Writing About Sports and Selling It”
Fitzpatrick Hall: Tyler Godsey, “Getting Your Book into Print”

Rehearsal Hall: Andrew Kantor, “Using the Internet for Research”
Training Room: Tommy Denton, “Writing Opinion”
Fitzpatrick Hall: Sharyn McCrumb, “Tell it Slant; Using Historical Events in Fictional Works”

Fitzpatrick Hall: Roundtable Discussion featuring various presenters.

Who’s Talking?
Here are brief biographies of the people who will be leading classes:

• Sharyn McCrumb: New York Times best-selling author who lives in Catawba. She has written a number of novels and has won awards for contributions to Appalachian literature and as Southern Writer of the Year.

• Dan Smith is a veteran of four decades of journalism, the winner of a number of awards, a regular essayist on Public Radio and the author of four books, including his recent memoir, Burning the Furniture.

• Sandy Smith is a nationally-known speaker, management consultant, trainer and business coach. His recent children’s book is often used in his presentations.

• Keith Ferrell is the former editor of Omni Magazine, author of 18 books, popular blogger and a medical columnist.

• Melanie Almeder is a respected poet (On Dream Street was recently published) and a former Virginia Teacher of the Year as a professor at Roanoke College.

• Todd Ristau’s work has been produced at London’s West End and he is the founder of No Shame Theater. He is Mill Mountain Theatre’s literary associate and teaches at Hollins University.

• Kurt Rheinheimer is the editor of the Roanoker Magazine and a respected writer of short fiction, especially baseball stories. His Little Criminals has received good reviews nationally.

• Nelson Harris, mayor of Roanoke, minister and writer of several local histories.

• Elizabeth Barbour, freelance writer, law student and author of a local history.

• Cara Modisett is the editor of Blue Ridge Country Magazine and an author.

• Gene Marrano is a freelance journalist involved in radio, television, newspapers and magazines. He has his own television show in Roanoke, “The Interview.”

• Donna Dilley is an etiquette consultant and writes a popular column on business etiquette.

• Kathy Surace is a fashion consultant and writes a column on dressing.

• Janis Jaquith is a known and respected columnist and Public Radio essayist.

• Rex Bowman of the Western Virginia Bureau of the Richmond Times-Dispatch has written one novel and is working on a collection of his stories about mountain people.

• Sarah Cox has written as a freelancer for a number of different publications in the market and also teaches writing at the college and high school levels.

• Tom Field is the general manager of the Blue Ridge Business Journal and owns a marketing and advertising business in Roanoke.

• Darrell Laurent is an award-winning columnist at the Lynchburg News & Advance, where he has written the paper’s lead column for more than two decades.

• Karen Adams writes children’s books, among other things.

• John Montgomery is the publisher of a sports magazine and has a long background in the newspaper business.

• Tyler Godsey has worked for a small book publisher.

• Tommy Denton is the former editor of the editorial page of The Roanoke Times.

• Andrew Kantor is a Roanoke-based freelance writer who specializes in technology. He has taught use of the Internet to journalists.

Register Online

Tickets: $40 registration fee ($46 includes lunch)

Sharyn McCrumb Website

Friday, October 12, 2007

Writing Gigs

December Issue:
A "How to Create an Author Platform" article for our December 2007 issue
on Authors. Please review our magazine's previous "How 2" articles to get a
flavor of what we're looking for. Only experienced authors will be accepted
for this particular column.
January Issue:
Focus on reading groups, literary guilds, and libraries.
Seeking: interviews with founders of literary guilds, popular reading
groups. Articles on subjects such as: "How to get your Book into a Book
Club"; Inside information on different reading groups and their decision-
making process on selecting authors; Anecdotes about your experience with
book clubs.
February Issue:
Romance is in the air! We'd love you to query us on your craft of writing
romance: How to create love scenes, Romancing the Reader, How to break into
the Romance Market, etc. And, if you're a romance author and would like to
write an article about your experience, or request an interview, we're all
March Issue:
Have you been published by a Small Press? Or perhaps you've researched them
and are awaiting publication. We want to hear from you! Send us your
View our submission guidelines:
(Note: Scroll to the bottom of the page under "Submissions")
Please view WOW! Women On Writing to get a flavor of our publication's
voice. Query the appropriate department.
Thank you for your interest, and we look forward to hearing from you!
Compensation: $50 - $150 per article
Reply to:
b5media is hiring 2 writers for a new blog on Science Fiction. The blog
will primarily cover SciFi television shows & movies (present and past),
as well as other important news in SciFi.
The applicant must be very familiar with the SciFi genre - television,
books, movies. This is a very high demand blog. The ideal bloggers will be
able to post articles several times per day, plus the additional time for
promotion & community building.
Knowledge of Science Fiction is a requirement. Please detail your
familiarity with the topic in your application.
Knowledge of Wordpress a plus. Knowledge of Image Editing a must. This is
a paid position.
Please include 2 writing samples related to the topic, and links to your
online writing experience, if any.
Compensation: paid
Reply to:
We are a new parenting focused magazine and are looking for freelancers to
write multiple articles on various topics surrounding pregnancy and
Specialization in health is a plus but we need content on a wide range of
parenting topics such as stages of pregnancy/babyhood, child development,
behavior, fun with the kids, etc.
Please contact me with you resume and send samples of work if you are
Compensation: Per article basis
Reply to:
National technology magazine geared toward government readers seeks
freelance writers for various projects.
Experience writing about business technology applications or government
is highly valued.
Interested candidates should submit at least two writing samples.
Compensation: based on project and experience
Reply to:

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Writing Gigs

Let me know if any of these jobs I post actually pan out. It'll give me some motivation to keep doing it!

This is a part-time position.
Oxford Intelligence (, a UK-headquartered business research
company specializing in international corporate location issues, is seeking
North American-based business writers, analysts and researchers to conduct
interviews with US and Canadian companies regarding their overseas
expansion plans.
Ideal candidates will be able to:
- identify potential companies for interview through their sectoral
- contact and interview senior business executives by telephone
- understand North American/European business culture
- understand business development issues
- demonstrate well-developed Internet research skills
Company profiles are comprised of basic company data plus a 300-350 word
analysis of the company's expansion plan, based on interview. Please visit
the website ( for more information.
For more information, e-mail your resume.
Compensation: depends on number of profiles produced
Reply to:
We are seeking writers who have a strong background in economics, finance
and international relations.
Experience required:
Experience in economics, finance and international relations.
How to apply:
Send your resume and writing samples.
Compensation: Depends on Experience
Reply to:
Wellness Professionals, a new healthcare business, seeks editor to edit a
range of healthcare content.
Work will take place over the next 5 weeks (by Nov 15, 2007). Location and
daily timing of work are flexible. Compensation is negotiable and based on
experience. Please reply with
(a) compensation requirements,
(b) work samples and
(c) resume
Compensation: negotiable
Reply to:
Creative individual needed to create, write and publish a insurance
newsletter for restaurants. Will be responsible for content and design to
be published on the web and in print for our current clients as well as
prospects. You will be paid $600 for each issue which will be 6 pages.
Copy and past resume here along with any links to prior work. We ask that
you also list ALL software programs you know of and noting how well you
know the program Excellent - Good or Fair.
Compensation: $600
Reply to:

Proofreaders needed. We're looking for the best proofers around -
specifically those with financial, legal or general advertising experience.
We must insist on those with at least 2-3 years experience. Looking for
top-notch pros who thrive on making sure words and meanings are clear and
concise! Is this you? If so, please apply today and upload your resume. No
phone calls please. Only qualified applicants will be contacted.
Compensation: $100/hr [Do you suppose this is a typo? A hundred bucks an hour...]
Reply to:
Part-Time Technology/Education Writer for Newsletter - Contract (Comp: Generous) (North Jersey/NYC; telecommute) :
Date: 2007-10-09, 5:27PM EDT We are a technology company serving private schools. We have a great opt-in bi-weekly newsletter dealing with the integration of technologies in education. Our writer is leaving us real soon, and we're looking for someone who can provide two 500-word articles a month. The articles need to intelligently discuss new technologies and their place in the school. If you have a talent for writing, a passion for technology, and a vested interest in education - we want to hear from you! Please send writing samples, ideally something to do with technology and/or education.
College Alumni Website Needs Writers! - Contract (Comp: negotiable DOE) (New York City) :
Date: 2007-10-09, 3:21PM EDT A new website for college alumni is seeking motivated and talented writes to work on contract basis. To be eligible for this gig, you must have attended a U.S. college or university, and know enough about your college and college town to write about it! You'll get paid to write about your old college! Please email for full details. Thanks!
Freelance Work - TBD) (New York) :
Date: 2007-10-09, 3:29PM EDT We are a commerical printshop, with an online website, looking to provide useful articles to our customer base about graphic design, the prepress process, etc. We are looking to find someone with extensive experience in the printing industry, mostly prepress and/or graphic design, to write relevant, useful articles, to not only educate our client base, but to provide them with the tools and knowledge to help build superior files that are print ready. If you have experience in prepress, or with working with printshops, or already a writer, you maybe the person we are looking for. The ideal person would be someone who wore all the following "hats" : writer, editor, photographer, graphic designer, art director, prepress manager, production manager, and print buyer.... here are just some possible examples of the type of useful and relevant articles we need. Sample Topics • Avoiding Fuzzy Four-Color Type • 4-Color Process Vs. Spot Color Printing • What You Should Know About Ink • Keep the Post Office in the Design Loop • What You Should Know About Ink Drying Time • Converting Images to CMYKConverting Fonts to Curves, Paths or Outlines • Electronic Files Formats DefinedUnderstanding Color - Printouts vs. Monitors • How to Sail Through Prepress • Paper Grain Direction - Why it Matters • Designing with Type in Photoshop Please respond ASAP and attach any relevant work you have done. We are looking to start an ongoing relationship with someone to showcase any articles you may have already written that are not specifically the property of someone else, and continue building on useful article, tips, tricks, etc.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

New Orleans Renaissance: What You Can Do

Yesterday, my husband and I spent the day at a Habitat for Humanity site in New Orleans. (I pounded nails all day, and Harry installed roof joists. We had no previous experience - turns out, though, we're trainable!) It was at Habitat's "Musicians' Village" in the Upper Ninth Ward of New Orleans.

The weather was hot and humid, and the labor was wicked exhausting, but I have to say that it was the high point of our trip.

We were there for an insurance convention. (NAPSLO) On Saturday morning, two busloads of insurance folks (and spouses, like me) showed up to wield circular saws and hammers, hoist plywood, staple Tyvek, etc.

We worked side by side with several of the people for whom the houses are being built. I worked next to a man and woman and their teenaged daughter -- their house in the Lower Ninth Ward was washed away when the levee burst. It was five days before the couple knew the whereabouts of their daughter.

A few rows of these houses have been completed. If you'd like to see the project we were working on, here's a link to the dedication, and the handing over of keys, to one person's new home: New Home Video

Also, here's a link to the Habitat for Humanity page about this particular project: Musicians' Village.

(It's an especially interesting project: they are constructing houses for displaced musicians, so the musicians can return to New Orleans.)

If you know anyone who's planning a trip to New Orleans (or would like to plan one) I hope you'll tell them about the volunteering opportunities through Habitat for Humanity.

During spring break and the summer, they have lots of volunteers. But at this time of the year, volunteering drops off. (And it was so hot and humid out there yesterday -- I can't imagine what summer is like!) Winters are mild in New Orleans, and it would be a great time to volunteer, if you can spare the time.

And, of course, donations are always welcome.

We were there for just one day. And lots of people volunteer for just one day. And it is astonishing what gets accomplished that way, over time! (My hat is off to those wonderful people who work there - gratis - for weeks at a time. Amazing. The young woman who led our crew is a year-long volunteer through AmeriCorps, which is like the Peace Corps but for projects here in America.)

The "before" photo is one I took in February of 2006. To see the rest of this set of pictures, click here: Jaquith post-Katrina photos. The "after" photo is part of Briebanofsky's photostream at

A friend of mine knows she can talk me into doing just about anything by saying, "But, Janis, you can write about it!" Volunteering for Habitat for Humanity is certainly worth your while...and, you can write about it!

Northern Virginia Magazine writing gig


Do you devour books? Seek out film beyond mainstream cinema? Have an
affinity for quirky websites? Northern Virginia Magazine is seeking a
freelance contributor to write book, independent film, DVD and CD features
on a semi-monthly basis. Interested applicants MUST demonstrate savvy in
all areas of the world of media. Contributor will also have the opportunity
to write profile features on artists, authors, philanthropists and notable
performing arts figures in the Northern Virginia region.
Qualified candidates must be familiar with Northern Virginia, should have
at least three years' experience writing for a newspaper, magazine or
online newsletter and be familiar with Associated Press Style Manual.
Submit resumes and no less than three writing samples.
Compensation: TBD
Reply to:

A Whole Passel o' Writing Gigs

Once again, I offer this information having no clue about those making the offers. Caveat scriptor.

Bridal Guide is interested in articles about marriage, relationships,
sexuality, psychology, budgeting and travel. Please do not send queries
concerning fashion, beauty or home design, since we produce these pages
in house. Wedding-planning ideas should cover broad subjects, such as
organizing a long-distance or theme wedding, or touch upon emotional
topics, such as dealing with divorced parents. Shorter, how-to pieces
(e.g. finding a band or choosing a cake) are written in house. We also do
not accept fiction or poetry.
We are looking for service-oriented, well-researched pieces that are
journalistically written and have a length of 1,000 to 2,000 words. ww/bl
Payment, made on acceptance, is 50 cents per word. Writers we work with
consult at least three expert sources, such as wedding planners, book
authors and business professionals in the appropriate field. Our tone is
conversational yet authoritative. Features are generally filled with real-
life anecdotes. We also run features that are completely real-person based
(e.g. bridesmaids discussing their experiences or grooms-to-be expressing
their thoughts about marriage).
In written queries, we are looking for a well-conceived idea, a specific
angle or focus, and the sources the writer intends to use. They should be
brief and snappy, and titles should be provided to give the editor a better
understanding of the writer’s direction.
Feature ideas, including queries for the magazine’s Confident Bride column,
should be sent to our executive editor, Susan Schneider. Feature ideas
related to honeymoon travel destinations should be sent to our travel
editor, Jenna Mahoney. Submit queries only, along with clips of work
published in a national consumer magazine and a self-addressed, stamped
envelope. You should receive a reply within one to three months, but please
note that we are unable to return manuscripts, clips or photos.
Compensation: $0.50/word for 500-3000 words
Reply to: Associate Editor/Bridal Guide Magazine,
We are an established Medical Spa in San Mateo looking for someone to write
our monthly Esthetic newsletter. The newsletter features articles on
fitness, health, and the latest beauty break throughs. Please send a
writting sample a long with a short paragraph telling us a little bit about
Compensation: TBD
Reply to:
Research and writing assistant wanted to assist successful technology and
media executives in creation and publication of articles, blogs, speeches
and books on the impact of technology on both university and K-12
education. Require superior critical thinking and writing skills. Knowledge
of education industry or technology useful but not necessary. Flexible
hours. Highly competitive compensation. Downtown DC office space available
or work from home.
Interested applicants please reply with cover letter and resume.
Compensation: Highly Competitive Compensation
Reply to:
A downtown Austin e-learning company is looking for freelance, offsite
writers to pitch, outline, and write online courses dealing with a wide
range of consumer and SMB finance topics -- everything from understanding
and improving credit scores to retirement planning for singles to selecting
an accounting package for your small business. Subject-matter knowledge,
good Web writing chops, and a clear, approachable writing style are
essential; experience in working with Word styles and templates is a big
plus. We're looking to expand our stable of freelancers who can pitch,
scope, and deliver courses on finance and general business topics. We
prefer Central Texas writers who can meet with us in our downtown offices
as needed, but we will consider qualified writers from other parts of the
US. Please send a resume, statement of interest, and links to your work.
Compensation: contract; 1099; flat fee per project; fee BOE
Reply to:
If you are an experienced outdoor writer and a passionate hiker with a
keen knowledge of area trails, please apply. This is a book project with a
premier publisher of outdoor guidebooks. Please submit resume if
Compensation: advance/royalty
Reply to:
Online News Service Seeks Freelancers (Comp: Not stated) (Columbia, MD) :
Disaster News Network (, a respected 24/7 Web news service is reopening its search for journalists with a passion for human interest reporting. The turnarounds are demanding but not deadly. The real rewards, however, are in the subject matter. This is news about people in trouble and those who respond. Disaster News Network has been produced since 1997 by Village Life Company, a non-profit that is largely funded by faith-based disaster response organizations. You'll conduct interviews by phone and in the field if you are available to travel. To be considered, you'll need a degree in journalism and at least one year of professional experience with daily or weekly papers or the wire services. Ability to shoot photos an added plus. Send your resume and no more than three samples (attachments preferred) to: or fax them to (410) 884-7353. No phone calls please.
Part-Time Freelance Reporters for (Comp: Not stated) (Chicago)
:, the Internet's fastest growing Web site and the Official Site of Major League Baseball, is seeking freelance reporters to help cover Major League Baseball for the 2008 season. We're interested in candidates with solid reporting skills and strong voices who are as well versed in writing about the sport off the field as they are about the games themselves. Responsibilities include: - Live reporting off of games, as well as the news of the day off the field. - Factual reporting; intelligent writing. - Professional representation of our company inside and outside our walls. - Multimedia experience a plus. Qualifications include: - Four-year degree preferred. - Passion for the sport, as well as a thorough knowledge of the sport. - Experience in writing on deadline. - Able to produce clean, crisp copy. - Team player to work in field, as well as with editors. - Good communicator and well-organized. - Self-starter with a wealth of ideas. - Willing to travel. - Bilingual a plus. Note: Baseball reporter job openings are subject to business requirements, and, as such, positions may not be available with respect to all MLB teams. Only applicants that apply online will be considered. No phone calls please.
Need Part-Time Medical Writers - Contract (Comp: Up to $20/hour possible) (telecommute) :
Looking for qualified writers for a medium-sized educational publishing company with background in medical fields for contract-based telecommuting positions. Pay is based on productivity, so if you're a motivated person with a writer's talent this could be the opportunity you're seeking. This position is being posted confidentially because of the competitiveness of the company's business, but applicants are aware that the work involves writing educational materials and interpreting large amounts of technical medical information quickly. Those interested should send a resume to Please put Cleveland Craigslist in the subject line.

Google Will Help Promote Your Book -- For Free

Alert LLLer Kathleen Valenzi Knaus ("Knaus"! She's a newlywed!) sends along this tip for those of us who have books to publicize: Promote Your Books On Google - for free.

From the Google site:
Want a way to sell more books without spending a penny on marketing? Sign up today and soon you'll be able to.

Google Book Search allows publishers and authors to submit their books for inclusion in Google’s search results. Whether you’re a large publisher with a thousand-title backlist or a small press that puts out a few titles a year, participating in Google Book Search can:

• increase your books’ visibility at no cost
• drive sales by reaching Google’s worldwide user base
• refer qualified traffic to your website
• deliver a new revenue stream via contextual ads placed next to pages from your book
[Main site:]
If anyone has given this one a whirl, I hope you'll click on "comment" and let us know how it worked out.

Monster Reviews!

The press is starting to roll in for LLL cofounder Susan Tyler Hitchcock's FRANKENSTEIN: A Cultural History. And WOW, is it ever hot!

Today's Los Angeles Times says:
Her text grows out of such a fertile ground of scholarly research that any chapter might blossom into another volume.

Thus it's all the more remarkable that this book is so much fun....

Her "cultural history" is so lively that at first you may decide it lacks scholarly ballast and slant. Soon, however, one sees that the author's admirable restraint serves to advance and streamline the text. In the last chapters, while addressing how academic criticism opened the door to "Frankenstein," Hitchcock's own work confirms the value of cultural history as a discipline.
Here's a Sept. 25 feature in Wired, It's Alive! How Frankenstein Created a Cultural Monster:
What is it about Frankenstein that has fascinated us for generations? "Frankenstein is about daring to go where your mind takes you," Hitchcock says. "But that can be dangerous, and our society has a whole set of rules and regulations to keep us from doing that." In a world of cloning, computers, stem cells, and transplants, it's not surprising that the monster seems even more alive today than it did back at the dawn of the electrical age.
And Frankenstein is at the top of a "Monsters, Inked" feature in the Books section in the Oct. 12 issue of Entertainment Weekly (not available online yet). Grade: B+.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Colorado LLLers on the Move!

Boulder Literary Lady Kim Reid will talk about her memoir, NO PLACE SAFE (Dafina), this Tuesday, Oct. 9 (changed from Oct. 10), on the NPR program News & Notes, hosted by Farai Chideya. Be sure to listen in--and then buy the book! It's a gripping reflection of Kim's teenage years, when her mom was one of the lead investigators in the Atlanta child murders, some of which occurred in their own neighborhood.

Edit: Guess what? News & Notes doesn't air in Colorado or Virginia. So we'll have to listen online here.

Denver Literary Lady (and Pajama Gardener) Carleen Brice has her first novel coming out in February, ORANGE MINT AND HONEY (One World/Ballantine). And she's just learned that the audio book will be coming out April 1. Woo hoo!