Great News. WNC lives on.
Dear Writers and Readers:
Nita here—one final time.
Thank you to the many people who showed interest in helping Write Now Columbus (WNC) continue. I so appreciate the care and concern expressed for my 20-year endeavor. A few comments brought me to tears. Gratefully, we have a plan to continue!
Beginning with the March 2023 issue, Theresa Garee will publish Write Now Columbus!
Tami Kamin Meyer will remain involved and several new faces will join the team.
Together they will turn their vision into reality. Rather than badly summarize their ideas and plans, I’ll let Theresa, et al, share that in future emails.
Theresa is a business woman, an author, a wife, and a mom. She’s used to juggling wriggly things. I’m confident that WNC subscribers, and WNC itself, will be in good hands.
Thank you forever and always to Shannon Jackson Arnold for generously trusting me, more than twenty years ago, with the small but mighty email list that became Write Now Columbus.
Thank you to Tami for helping keep WNC alive for the past several years.
Thank you to each and every subscriber for more than two decades of interest, input, and support. It’s been an honor and a privilege to serve you.
And thank you to Theresa for taking the risk to step into this role, and to the new folks she will introduce later.
With that, I’ll show myself out.
Nita Sweeney, retired publisher of WNC
(c) 2023, all rights reserved
The Future of Write Now Columbus
Nita here, cutting to the chase.
After twenty years publishing Write Now Columbus, it’s time for me to step down and for a new publisher to step up.
Is This You?
The ideal Write Now Columbus (WNC) publisher is someone with strong central Ohio ties who runs a writer-centric business. It might be an editor, publisher, coach, or marketing expert who serves writers and readers.
Or, it might be a writer looking for a community service project. That’s how I began. I knew I would be able to publicize my own events and help other writers while doing so.
WordPress and email newsletter experience would help, but a passion for the central Ohio writing community is the main requirement. I can teach you the rest.
I’ve always considered WNC my “community service” project rather than a business. As a result, current expenses exceed donations and sponsorships. I will fully disclose all this information to anyone interested in taking on the work.
Tami Kamin Meyer, the WNC volunteer editor, is willing to continue to be involved. However, she’s not available to assume responsibility for the entire newsletter alone.
IF YOU ARE INTERESTED OR KNOW SOMEONE WHO WOULD BE A GOOD FIT,
PLEASE CONTACT US ASAP!
Tami and I will publish a February 2023 newsletter. After that, unless someone steps up, we will put it to bed.
Neither of us want Write Now Columbus to end, but it’s had a fabulous run. Twenty years is a long time!
On January 1st, 2003 when I sent the first issue of “Write Now,” the monthly email newsletter that would become Write Now Columbus, I had no idea how long I would continue. Shannon Jackson Arnold, the original publisher, graciously gave me her email list of central Ohio writers when she moved from Ohio to Wisconsin. Tami Kamin Meyer was on Shannon’s original email list.
In 2020, when I began to look for someone to take over WNC, Tami eagerly responded. My first book had been published and the second was in the works. I no longer had time or energy to manage Write Now Columbus effectively. Tami volunteered to write the essay, convinced me to accept sponsorships in addition to donations, and secured quite a few. I’m forever grateful to her!
And, of course, I’m grateful to each of YOU for opening and clicking and reading and replying month after month after month for TWENTY YEARS! Thank you for letting us be of service!
As some of you know, back in September of 2022, I had a cardiac episode. It has resolved, but there’s nothing like a serious medical issue to rearrange your priorities.
Plus, two decades is a long time to keep something going. Twenty has a nice ring to it. It seems like the perfect time to put a bow on my tenure.
To be honest, since 2018 when I entered a contract for my first book, I haven’t given WNC the attention it deserves. With my mental health issues, it takes every ounce of “work” energy I have to be a successful author, leaving little for WNC. Thank you again Tami for stepping in.
And, it hurts to see the untapped potential in WNC. It deserves fresh eyes and energy.
WE WILL NOW TAKE YOUR QUESTIONS
Please CONTACT US with any questions and we will do our best to answer them right away.
All my best,
Nita Sweeney, publisher
(c) 2023, all rights reserved
By Tami Kamin Meyer
When central Ohio journalist and author Sherry Paprocki first met New York-based writer Estelle Erasmus in 2016, Paprocki had a plan for tapping into Erasmus’s incredible organizational and networking skills. Paprocki had just been elected president of the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and she eyed Erasmus to chair the organization’s next annual writer’s conference in New York City.
Erasmus accepted the challenge, but not before checking Paprocki’s sun sign to ensure the pair could work well together. “I got a kick out of that,” said Paprocki.
Paprocki has enjoyed a varied and successful freelance life, as has Erasmus. On January 3, 2022, Paprocki released her 15th book, Freelance Fancy: Your Guide to Capturing Spiritual Health, Wealth and Happiness from Gig Work.
For her part, Erasmus’s non-fiction book tapping into her years of experience as a magazine editor, author, and freelance writer will be published in 2023. The book, Writing That Gets Noticed: Find Your Voice, Become a Better Storyteller, Get Published is aimed at writers at all levels of their writing career.
A podcast was born
Not only was Paprocki’s latest book released on January 3, but Erasmus also happened to call her that same day to discuss the possibility of the two experts and friends hosting a podcast about freelance writing. After months of planning, the pair released the first episode of ‘Freelance Writing Direct’ on October 6. New episodes drop every Thursday and can be found on Spotify and iTunes, to name a few.
Still in its infancy, Freelance Writing Direct is quickly proving its popularity. It has already earned honors to be among the top 15% of new downloads in the podcast world.
In describing the podcast, Erasmus said the pair combines their years of experience writing about the craft, creating and implementing writing strategies and assessing their own writing and suggestions for viable article ideas and even book topics.
“Our goal, in general, is to educate anyone interested in a freelance writing career,” said Paprocki. The podcast’s target audience ranges from listeners just considering freelancing, people newly embarking on a freelance career to even the full-time writer.
The news literally hot off the presses is that Paprocki lured the publisher of the Dispatch Magazines, owned by Gannett Co., to join her decade-old PR firm, R.S. Rock Media, on Oct. 31. In making his announcement that he is leaving that top post, Ray Paprocki wrote of his excitement to be joining his wife’s journalistic venture.
A parting piece of advice
If Erasmus could offer freelance writers one tidbit of advice, it would be “Never give up! Writing is a marathon, not a race.” Paprocki urged freelance writers to understand their financial worth. “Value yourself as a writer: set a price and stick to it. If you have three or four years of writing experience, eliminate any job that’s not paying you at least $60 an hour because you are worth at least that much, and probably more.”
A moment with Columbus author Robin Yocum
By Tami Kamin Meyer
Robin Yocum, an award-winning Columbus author, journalist and wordsmith attributes his ability to complete a variety of writing-related projects more to technology than old-school techniques.
Yocum says he wrote his latest novel, The Sacrifice of Lester Gates, “while I was driving, voice to text. Then I emailed it to myself. I will head down the road, put my earphones in and talk to the characters in my head.” The novel was released in 2021 by Arcade CrimeWise and was a finalist for the 2022 Dashiell Hammett Award for excellence in crime writing.
A journalism graduate of Bowling Green State University, the Brilliant, Ohio native is the author of ten novels. His book Favorite Sons was named the 2011 Book of the Year for Mystery/Suspense by USA Book News. Brilliant Death was a Barnes & Noble No. 1 bestseller and a finalist for both the 2017 Edgar Award and the Silver Falchion Award for best adult mystery. Yocum was a journalist with the Columbus Dispatch from 1980-1991, including six years as the senior reporter on the investigative desk. He has won more than 30 local, state and national journalism awards ranging from investigative reporting to feature writing. Prior to that, he was the associate sports editor at the Times Leader in Martins Ferry, Ohio, and a reporter for the Eagle-Gazette in Lancaster, Ohio. He is also the principal at Yocum Communications, a public relations and marketing consulting firm in Galena, Ohio, which he founded in 2001.
The Sacrifice of Lester Gates is the sequel for Favorite Sons.
“I always have something going on and try to write (at least) 500 words a day,” says Yocum. He recently completed his 11th novel and is in the process of finding an agent for the work.
“I’m excited about it,” he says of the fiction work about a mob hitman.
According to Yocum, writing novels has been a lifelong passion.
“In my heart of hearts, I always wanted to write fiction. I wanted to create uniquely and mine my own ideas, from my imagination, in my own words,” he says.
Yocum’s favorite aspect of being a writer is “the creativity.”
He explains that when he was younger, he needed a “creative outlet and the Dispatch was that. The writing was laborious, but never hard. No heavy lifting. I enjoy when I think I’ve created something pretty good. It doesn’t get old when my new books arrive in the mail and I rip the box open.”
His advice to would-be authors?
“If you’re not excited about a book, the reader will know.”
He also relies heavily on an old adage taught in journalism school. “Write about what you know. I’m going to stick to that,” he sums.
Discover more about Yocum at robinyocum.net.
Nita Sweeney is a lot of things to a lot of people. On top of the important and varied hats she wears, including wife, writer, author, coach, mentor, mental health advocate, marathoner, devoted dog ma, (decaf) coffee addict, and one-time attorney, she is also a meditator.
As it happens, she met the love of her life before she realized her love of meditation. It is endearingly sweet how Ed Sweeney, her husband of 29 years, not only stole Nita’s heart but also introduced her to an ancient ritual that has become central to her life, both personally and professionally.
“There was this guy,” she recalls, a slight blush rising on her cheeks nearly three decades later, of her early days with Ed. One day, her then-boyfriend asked if she would like to “sit.” He was actually inviting her to meditate. Because she liked the guy, she went along with his request. He set the microwave timer for five minutes.
“Try not to fidget,” he instructed.
But Nita is a fidgeter, and simply could not sit still the entire five minutes.
While he may not have been impressed with her meditation skills at the time, Ed both married that writer and introduced her to an activity that served as a mental lifeline for decades to come.
Her newest book, Make Every Move a Meditation, is aimed at readers both new to meditation and those with experience in the exercise. “While I give specific, detailed instructions a beginner can follow, some of the techniques might also be unfamiliar to people who have practiced before,” says Nita. While most meditation techniques suggest sitting or walking while practicing, Nita focuses on movement meditation.
Although movement meditation is not new, it is not commonly taught, says Nita. “There is an assumption you must sit still in order to develop the calm and concentration necessary for effective meditation practice. I agree that a still body can create conditions to help the mind calm on its own, but stillness is not necessary.”
While she had been exposed to the concept of meditation prior to meeting Ed, Nita admits she viewed it as “bold” and “exotic.” However, as she continued to practice meditation alongside “that guy,” Nita eventually experienced the calm and concentration that can result from meditation.
Nita’s interest in mental health grew as she became more endeared to meditation and the soothing benefits she enjoyed from it. Penning Make Every Move a Meditation is a culmination of her years pursuing mental and physical health for herself coupled with her desire to share with others what she has learned along with way.
Writing about mental health “helps me process my life,” says Nita.
She says, “I enjoy writing about mental health and meditation based on my own experience because putting words on a page is a way to digest what happens to me. It helps me understand life on a deeper level.” She says writing a book combining her loves of meditation, exercise, and mental health has been a long-term goal, but it took years for the idea to percolate in her mind.
Nita is excited to embark on an abbreviated book tour that will take her to several locations in the coming months including Columbus and Cincinnati. She will participate in virtual events around the book, too. Check our calendar for further information.
Beyond promoting her book, blogging, running, meditating, and sharing adventures with Ed, Nita is also looking ahead. “I’m nagged by an unfinished novel about a unicorn barista who unknowingly joins a troop of homeless forest people trying to save some ancient trees. There are also memoirs about some family members. And, poetry beckons.”
“I want to write it all.”
(c)Tami Kamin Meyer, 2022, all rights reserved