Bring on Your Writing Mojo in 2020

We’re off to a great start in my Spring 2020 classes at Kean University and Rider University! This semester, I’ll be sharing this post with my Kean COMM4620 Public Relations Writing students and my Rider COM341 Publicity Methods students as part of an assignment — it’s a repost (including updates) of a previous post from my blog. 

How do you get ready to write? Whatever I’m writing, these are the steps I take to motivate myself and to get the “creative juices” flowing. Sometimes, I only need to do one or two of the steps to get ready… Other times, I need to do it all!

1. Clear Your Head — and Your Workspace — to Get Organized

To get started on any writing project, I need to focus on the project — not on everything else going on in my life. First, I make a handwritten list of things I need to do that aren’t related to the writing project and tuck the list away to be looked at later. (I believe that when I put a pen in my hand and write on a piece paper the activity “triggers” some creative juices in my brain…) Then I make another list — or an outline — for the project I need to do right then and there. In my workspace, I move piles of work out of my view so they don’t distract me, which brings us to the next step…

2. Shut Down Distractions
I turn off my phone or put it on vibrate. I sign off all social media (Twitter, Facebook, etc.). Then I  close the browser window for my email account on my laptop. If it’s on, I turn off the news/talk radio (sometimes music is okay — it depends on my mood…) and I turn off the TV, if it’s on. I can’t be distracted if I really want to focus on my writing.

3. Do Something Else First — Something You Enjoy Doing
For me, a walk on the beach (in warmer months, but sometimes in winter) or preparing a favorite recipe can inspire me to “tackle” a writing project. What do you enjoy doing?… What inspires you? Do that first, then sit down and write, write, write!

4. Time Yourself — and Don’t Forget to Give Yourself a Break (or Two)
Sometimes I actually set a real timer and write for 20 or 30 minutes. When the timer goes off, I get up and “reward” myself by getting a snack or taking a short break. If I’m really on a writing streak, I’ll reset the timer and keep on writing… I think doing this makes me feel better because it’s a way to “control” the process.

5. Focus on Your Readers/Your Audience and Put Yourself in Their Shoes
Think about your readers or audience. Who will be reading or hearing the words you’re writing? What do they like or dislike? How can you grab — and keep — their attention? Successful writing projects are written for specific audiences. I sometimes pretend I’m having a conversation with my readers, like I’m doing right now.

Well, these steps are the ones I take when I’m getting ready to write. However, we all have different ways of doing things… I hope you’ll tell me what you think by responding to this blog post so we can continue the conversation!

What do YOU do to get ready to write? Please share your tips and ideas here.

Until next time, take care, and thanks for reading (and hopefully responding)!

— Kathy Magrino

Learning By Doing: Rider University Students Take Over Social Media at #HMHWomenRock Event

I’ve always been a big believer in the concept of “learning by doing”! myLIpost WOMENROCK

This semester (Fall 2017), my “COM341 Publicity Methods” class at Rider University has had the wonderful opportunity to work with, and learn from, Meghan Higgins, Online Conversation Starter for Hackensack Meridian Health (HMH), and Margaret Fontana, HMH Digital Information Officer. Meghan and Margaret are our class’ “real-world” clients, and they’ve been helping us to learn everything we can about communications, social media, digital media, event planning, promotion, publicity, business, and more!

After weeks of planning during our class meetings and Skype sessions with Meghan and Margaret, on Saturday, October 21, we accomplished a “social media takeover” at the HMH Women Rock event in Asbury Park, New Jersey. Throughout the afternoon event, which was attended by hundreds of people, we expertly handled the social media coverage. We also were fortunate to have the assistance of a few photographers from my class and from Professor Jessi Oliano’s photography class at Rider. It was a great day – and an awesome experience for everyone involved!

A big “thank you” to these special people:

  • Thank you to my Rider students and Prof. Oliano’s photography students for doing such an amazing job! You make me so proud to be associated with you and Rider University. 🙂
  • Thank you to everyone at the #HMHWomenRock event who participated with us in real life (IRL) and on social media – Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat and Pinterest!
  • And, most of all, a BIG “THANK YOU” to Meghan Higgins, Margaret Fontana, and the folks at Hackensack Meridian Health who made this learning experience possible!

 

Are You Ready to Get More Social [Media]?…

Recently, a friend asked me about the social media consulting work I’ve been doing for a few of my clients, so I shared the following information with her.
croppedcolorfulbutterflyAfter I sent the info, and the more I thought about it, I decided it might be a good idea to share the information with everyone… Maybe you — or someone you know — could benefit by “getting more social [media]” for your business?! If that’s the case, please reach out to me. I’d love to chat with you!
 

Get More Social [Media] and Navigate the Social Media Channels with Kathy Magrino as Your Guide…

In the social media world, someone who “loves to talk” can work to your advantage: Kathy Magrino can help you navigate the social media channels and gain exposure for your business. Kathy will serve as your co-pilot and advisor as you take control of your business’ social media presence. She’ll show you how you can use social media to connect with more potential customers and fans, and you’ll gain more exposure for your business or brand. And, if you’d prefer, Kathy can manage and take care of your day-to-day social media tasks for you, while you relax and enjoy the ride!

Kathy has a long history of being known as a “social butterfly” and someone who enjoys chatting with other people. In fact, Kathy’s grammar school teachers would say she “loves to talk too much” and sometimes was “too social” in class. Jump ahead a few decades, and these “social skills” have combined with Kathy’s many years of experience as a writer, editor and marketing professional to create a powerful combination of skills. In recent years, these skills have been helping Kathy guide her clients – B2B and B2C businesses of all types and sizes – through the social media channels, “talking,” “chatting” and “socializing” their way to more exposure and more business.

From selecting the most effective social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and so on), to blogging and micro-blogging, to curating content (finding news and information relevant to your audience’s interests to share through the social media channels), to establishing an online “voice” for your brand and business, Kathy can help you do all things social-media-related, and she can help guide your business to social media success!

Connect with Kathy Magrino today to get started on your social media journey… She definitely looks forward to “chatting” with you! 😉

Email – kathy@thewriteway.com

Twitter – @kathymagrino

LinkedIn – http://www.linkedin.com/in/kathymagrino

Phone – 732-995-4030  

Creativity and enthusiasm shine through the blogs my students are writing!

A few years ago, I blogged about how impressed I was with the blogs my students were creating and writing for our COM106 Writing for the Communication Professions class at Rider University. And each semester since 2012, I’ve continued to be “wowed” by my students’ blogs.blogcollageimage It’s not just the writing that they’re doing that’s impressive. It’s my students’ creativity that impresses me the most!

I give my students complete creative control over their blogs, and they can choose to write about any theme they want (because I believe that it’s always easier to write when you’re writing about a topic that interests you). Their creativity is awesome, and it’s enhanced by their enthusiasm for the topics they’re writing about, as well! They’re doing such a great job writing their blogs this semester, and the themes and topics are so interesting. I enjoy reading every post they write. 🙂

Take a look at a few of the blogs created during the past few weeks (Spring Semester 2015), and I think you’ll be impressed, too!