Monthly Archives: September 2009

The Rise of the Book Sherpa

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My life as a publicist has evolved over the years often being guided and shaped by the unique needs of my clients. For the last year, I’ve had the great fortune to work with a variety of authors and teachers steeped in the new consciousness arena. They are thoughtful, creative, generous people who I am privileged to know and support.

My career has had a strong literary component beginning with earning my bachelor of fine arts degree in Writing, Literature and Publishing from Emerson College in Boston, MA. I was a story analyst for film companies in Los Angeles, a freelance writer in Austin and always a publicist in some way or another. The thread throughout has been a deep passion for storytelling. Later I was a founding member of Texas Writers Month and was the PR Director for the Texas Book Festival founded and chaired by First Lady Laura Bush.

So when my clients started asking me to help with shaping their book ideas and editing book proposals I found myself being drawn into a new area of business that has quickly become a passion. But what would I call myself? An editor? A ghostwriter? A writing consultant? Nope. My forte is helping authors get to the top of their personal literary summits– helping writers with books that have been climbing for months, sometimes years. Like a sherpa, I come in when you have a concept, ideas, notes and the willingness to do some focused work for two days. So what am I? I am your Book Sherpa. Here’s what you can expect:

– Two days focused on discussing your book idea, reviewing your pages and notes and developing a book outline

– I will interview you based on this outline and your responses will be inputed into dictation software which will become the basis of your first draft

– We will work together to complete a book proposal ready for agents and/or publishers

So, do you have a book in you just waiting to come out? Are you a teacher, an expert, or do you have an extraordinary story to share? Let me help. I’ll be your personal guide to climbing that creative mountain path. Give me two days, and you’ll walk away with the beginning of a new chapter, and the perfect view!

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Twenty Years in PR

This month marks the 20th anniversary in my my PR career. Twenty. I’ll be posting some lessons, highlights (and lowlights) of a career spanning Boston, Los Angeles and Austin, TX. For now, here is a video featuring Edward Bernays. He was already in his 90s when I met him for the first time in his opulent Cambridge home when I was a student in Boston im 1989. I was in my first PR job promoting movies for Paramount Pictures on college campuses in Cambridge and Boston and I had the chance to be a part of a small group who visited him to hear stories and ask questions.

Bernays was a legend in the PR business and many called him the “Father of Public Relations.” People loved him because he was such a master storyteller and an incredible witness to and participant in the history of the 20th century. People hated him because he began a culture of emotional spending and consumerism the likes of which society had never been seen before. He was Sigmund Freud’s nephew and used the work of his uncle– mass psychology in particular– to hone in on people’s emotions to motivate them to buy and become loyal to products.

A propagandist? Yes. A genius? Arguably, yes. Decide for yourself.

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