I receive a ton of press releases from publicity agents, presses, writers, etc, about new books coming out. But this one stood out to me and here's why--
1) She spelled my name correctly (yay!) and she wrote how she learned about me and my blog:
I discovered your blog last year through Robert Lee Brewer's list of Best Blogs for Writers.
2) She told me immediately why she was writing me ( her new ebook) and it might be helpful or informational for readers of my blog.
3) She gave me an advance copy I could easily pull up with a link.
Normally, I like hardcopies mailed to me as I like to see the quality of the book and keep it on my nightstand to read before bed (yes, that's how I roll, old school), but she had done everything right in this email, and I liked her, so I clicked on the link.
4) She was brief, polite, and sincere. She ended it with what I could do to help her (basically, I like it feel free to mention it to others and friends) and thanked me.
That was it. Basically, 4 steps to a perfect press release or publicity email.
There were no attachments. She bolded the important parts. It was a clean, easy to read email.
And one more thing, when I saw her photograph-- she was incredibly likable looking--
I look a little cranky in my most recent headshot, but because I'm *always* smiling in my others, I went for something new. Anyway, when I saw her photo, I seriously wanted to help her out.
And then as I looked more into this book, I realized she has done all the work. She began writing professionally in 2010 and wrote "in 2010 I was 24" - do the math, it's 2013, she's 27, under 30 and look at what she's doing. I'm hugely impressed with writers who find what they want to do and do it. And finish!
These are the types of women in the world who inspire me.
So here's her new book:
The Writer's Bucket List by Dana Sitar: What I like about this book is that she's young and she did this on her own.
It's not meant for someone whose been writing awhile (though I did enjoy reading her 99 Things to Do as a Writer from type on a typewriter to write a thank you note to your teachers), but these are small ideas (a couple paragraphs for each idea) for someone who wants to be writer, but isn't sure where to begin.
She is there for writers who have decided they'd like to try writing and aren't sure where to begin. I have a feeling we're going to see a lot more from her.
Here's what Dana wrote about The Writer's Bucket List:
In May 2011, I left my job and home in Madison, Wisconsin to move to San Francisco to be a full-time writer. I didn’t know what that meant, and I had no idea how to make it happen. Nonetheless, I started to collect clients, publish stories, and make my living writing and doing what I love.
I’ve been trying to come up with the right response to the readers, friends and colleagues who say to me, “I’d like to do what you’re doing, but…”
I needed a way to say, “So do it already!”
So I wrote a book.
‘A Writer’s Bucket List’ is a launching point for all of the possibilities of being a writer. Instead of another how-to on any kind of writing, this book is a “Why not?” for the writer’s life.
The list is a combination of the unique steps that have formed my career and bolstered my creativity, and the things I haven’t yet had a chance to try. The book offers some conventional and some unconventional steps on the path through a writer’s life, why they matter, and advice for getting started.
By the way, here's her bio-
Dana Sitar is a freelance journalist and indie author. She shares resources, tips, and tools for writers in search of a path through DIY Writing. She has been writing professionally since 2010, blogging unabashedly since 2011, and traveling perpetually since she discovered that one feature article could purchase enough gas for a cross-country road-trip.
Dana has written for Writer’s Market, The Daily Cardinal, The Onion, Baystages, SF Weekly,Laughspin, and Maximum Ink; as well as dozens of writing and career blogs, including The Creative Penn, Make a Living Writing, and Brazen Life. Her ebook A Writer’s Bucket List: 99 things to do for inspiration, education, and experience before your writing kicks the bucket was released in 2013.
And her website: Dana Sitar http://danasitar.com/
For me, this is a reminder of what is possible for all of us. 16 years ago, I quit my corporate job to move to a small town and write. Sometimes I forget that. Sometime I forget I'm a writer. Or feel scattered.
But seeing what she has done inspires me.
Do what you love and FINISH your projects.
Thanks, Dana, for reminding me that people still follow their dreams and while trying to help others follow theirs. Nicely done.
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