Pitch Ideas: A Time-Saving Template

Pitch Ideas: A Time-Saving Template

Need to pitch ideas? Pitcherific is very clever. It offers a simple, free pitch template you can use, right in your Web browser. And, to ensure that you’re not taking too much time on it, there’s a timer too.

What’s a pitch?

A pitch is a sales tool. It’s a presentation. It can be as short as an elevator pitch, which takes a minute or two, or it can be a huge, glitzy presentation.

I like Pitcherific’s tool, because it outlines the basic elements of a pitch: your hook, the problem faced by your audience, your solution, and the “close”, which you should think of as the “call to action.”

When should you pitch?

The short answer: do it more. I work with writers and marketers, and very few (think one in a thousand) do enough pitches. I include myself in the group too. We know that we should pitch more, but we just don’t.

An example. I was browsing the Web, researching a project, and came across a company which sells popular products. This company has been in business for a couple of decades. I thought, “wow, this company would do well in Australia.” Then I went on with what I was doing.

An hour later, I remembered the company. I went back through my browser history so that I could find their name, and send them a pitch email. Your pitch doesn’t need to be complicated. It can be a simple email message, or it can be a complete presentation.

Give Pitcherific a try. Disclosure: I have no connection with the company, at all. I just think their template is very useful. Pitcherific will help you not only to create pitches quickly, it will also give you confidence.

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, and on YouTube, too.

Slideshare Trick: Your Deck As a Gif

Kindle Fiction: Write Hot-Selling Short Stories

If you use Slideshare, you may like this clever trick: Gifdeck turns your decks into gifs. Just go to Slideshare and get the URL for your deck, and paste it into Gifdeck. Within a few seconds, it’s created a gif for you.

You can add the gif anywhere you’d like — into a blog post, or into Twitter, or even into an email message.

It’s an easy way to get more mileage out of your presentations.

Oh — here’s the real presentation. The gif is too fast to read. However, it does get attention. It’s a way of pepping up your social media content very simply.

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, and on YouTube, too.

Writing Journal 35: Harvesting Inspiration

Writing Journal 35: Harvesting Inspiration

My writing journal for Tuesday, September 16, 2014. You can find all the writing journal entries here.

A slow start this morning. I spent most of my novella-writing time developing a HUGE cluster diagram of character and plot ideas.

Although this is good, I wanted to get on with the writing. I’ve learned to go with the flow, so if this is what my inner writer feels is necessary, more power to the muse.

You’ve got to harvest your inspirations when you can. I used the Inspiration app (the name suits the app perfectly) to develop the cluster, because you can just keep going. It’s got an endless canvas, so your diagrams can be as large as you like.

I’ve used Inspiration for years, going way back to the time I was a Windows person. I made the switch to Macs in 2005, so I’ve been using it for well over a decade. Wonderful app. It’s got an iPad version, but I haven’t tried that yet.

Consequently, with all the brainstorming, I managed just 300 words of the novella.

It must just be a morning for my muse to go overboard. As soon as I started editing the nonfiction book for my ghostwriting client; I got an idea for a new writers’ program. Sigh — as if I need anything more on my plate. I clustered on that for a while, then got myself back into editing.

Honey was restless, so I gave her her breakfast and made my own, while scanning social media. Although I know I should avoid it, I read more about the Hachette/ Amazon dispute.

Email was heavy this morning, with lots of student material. I’ve scheduled handling that for tonight, because I won’t have time during the day.

The weather’s warming up. We’ve got rain and thunderstorms this morning, so walking is out. If the weather clears, I need to go for a walk this afternoon.

Interview for the company history

Julia managed to schedule some interviews for the company history, which is great. Wonderful client, very easy to work with. I made some notes, and we chatted for 40 minutes. I wrote up my notes, and spent a couple of hours working on the project.

Then, lunch at my computer, while reading news websites. I tend to be a news junkie, although I’m trying to wean myself away from it.

Presentations: thank you, Haiku Deck

I’ve got two presentations to do for my retainer client. Julia scheduled an interview, so we have a little chat. It only takes 20 minutes to get the information I need.

The presentations are already outlined, so I brainstorm a couple of taglines, and spend a couple of timer sessions working on them.

Thanks to Haiku Deck, presentations take much less time than they used to. I create a draft presentation in Haiku Deck, then export it to PowerPoint.

I got an idea for the company history, so I went back to work on it. I started out just making notes, but I ended up writing 1,500 words.

Whitelines Magic: Two new Leuchtturm1917/ Whitelines notebooks

Leuchtturm1917 medium and the Leuchtturm1917 pocket hard covers

Happy days. I’m a huge fan of Whitelines paper. I ordered two new notebooks, and they arrived today — they’re Link notebooks, so I can scan pages directly into Evernote.

When I bought several Whitelines notebooks last year, their Whitelines Link notebooks weren’t available in Australia. I thought about ordering them from Sweden, then gave myself a slap in the head, because I couldn’t justify that.

Time rolls on. I used the notebooks and now Whitelines Link notebooks are available in Australia — thank you larryPost.

My notebooks arrived this morning. I ordered the Leuchtturm1917 medium and the Leuchtturm1917 pocket hard covers. I LOVE Leuchtturm1917, because the pages are numbered, there’s a table of contents, AND they have nifty pockets in the back.

Both Leuchtturm1917 and Whitelines paper is very fountain pen friendly. Currently my favorite “everything” pen is a medium steel nib Waterman, with J.Herbin Larmes de Cassis ink.

Larmes de Cassis is a dusty rose color, but it’s very readable on Whitelines, and scanned into Evernote. It’s also a very restful ink. I bought it last year, and hated it at first, but it’s grown on me. I use it for almost everything now.

I use paper all day, every day, and either recycle it, or scan it into Evernote. As soon as I unpacked the notebooks, I downloaded the Whitelines Link app to my phone. The app will scan my notes directly into Evernote. Yes! I’m a very happy person. :-)

Rolling along with the nonfiction book freebie

I manage to do another 1,500 words on it. It’s going very well. I just need to source some graphics for it.

Client proposals

I send out client proposals frequently, but over the past few weeks I’ve been too busy trying to get everything done. We’re culling many of our writing programs, which means that there’s been a huge amount of student material to go through. So, I’ve been slacking off on proposals, time to get moving on the backlog.

A few phone calls, my daily review and word count totals, and the day is done.

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, and on YouTube, too.

Writing Journal 29: Ghostwriting a Company History

Writing Journal 29: Ghostwriting a Company History

My writing journal for Wednesday, September 10, 2014. You can find all the writing journal entries here.

Another ghostwriting project came in late yesterday, which means there’s no time for my fiction and nonfiction ghostwriting projects this morning. I’ll get to them later today.

I enjoy ghostwriting projects which are different. This one’s a company history. The 50th anniversary of the company’s founding is coming up in two months. The company history will be part of the celebrations, and is also for historical purposes. My client’s considering a small book, plus a glossy magazine. I’m writing the book; the material for the magazine will include excerpts from the book.

Once I accepted the project — which I did, immediately, because it’s fascinating, and I know I’ll enjoy it — I needed to do some quick research, and planning. I’ve got a meeting this morning, so on the way back, I’ll pop into the library and do some more research. I want to look at newspapers from the 1960s, just to get a sense of the era.

By the end of the day, I’m hoping that I’ll have some questions for my first interview with the client.

Time to catch up with email

I zoom through email. Last night I read through the Christmas stories I’ve done so far, and planned a couple more. I also caught up on student emails a little. I need to do some more of that tonight, so I can get it under control.

With that out of the way, it’s time for Honey’s breakfast and my own. I make some notes too; I need to rearrange projects to deal with the company history. If I spend more time on the nonfiction book each day, I’ll be able to wrap it up sooner. Just last week I was congratulating myself on being ahead on it.

The product-launch website content, and the pitch presentation are slotted in for this afternoon, along with the novella and nonfiction book. So, a busy day ahead, which is great. I enjoy having lots to do. It’s Wednesday already, so I’ll try and get another Christmas story done by the weekend.

Newsreader apps

I’m loving Leaf. (Mac.) I’m leaving it running as I write, and it picks up posts instantly, just minutes after publication. My best newsreader by far.

Getting book reviews

Over the past weeks, writers have been asking about book reviews. Reviews are basically just marketing. If you only have one book on Amazon, focus on writing, rather than reviews— here’s how to get reviews.

Time to head out…

An afternoon with fiction and nonfiction

Back again, so it’s time for my usual daily fiction novella, and nonfiction book. Just over an hour on each, for 1,000 words of fiction, and 1,800 words of nonfiction.

Next, I need to focus on the Web content for the product launch; but I want to leave a little time for the pitch presentation too.

It’s almost three hours later, and I’m tired. Running around broke up the writing day. That’s as much as I can handle without a long break.

I’m planning on catching up with with student projects for a couple of hours later, so that should get emails up to date. I also need to work on the questions for my first interview for the company history.

Daily review done, word counts done… time for a break. :-)

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, and on YouTube, too.