Social Media for Writers: Federation of BC Writers AGM Keynote

Blogging: We're going to need more monkeys

So, guess who’s giving the keynote at the Fed AGM on Thursday? That’s right, it’s my fine self, and if you’re a BC writer who is not yet part of the Fed, you might want to attend, not just for the chance to hear my mellifluous tones and terrific tips on social media for writerly self-promotion, but also because they are giving a discount on membership to new members who sign up that night.

Here are the deets:

Social Media: you’ve heard about it, you’ve probably used it without even knowing, now learn how to make it work for you. Social Media is the most effective, most affordable way for a professional writer to promote her self and her works, develop a following, and gain experience in the public eye if she knows what she’s doing. Lorraine Murphy, a professional blogger and social media instructor for the past five years, will give us the benefit of her experience on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, blogs, Digg, reddit, Stumbleupon, and other social media platforms. Canada was the birthplace of that truly revolutionary social media device, the telephone, and as the heirs of Bell and Watson, Canadian writers have every reason to put themselves at the forefront of this increasingly-critical, literary communications platform.

6:30pm-10pm, Thursday, May 13

Alliance for Arts & Culture Board Room

938 Howe St.

Downtown Vancouver

Speaker: Lorraine Murphy, Social Media Maven ~ “Social Media Marketing for Writing”
Board elections, new constitution, state of the union
Door prizes, networking, refreshments, member book sales, connecting with the writing community

Federation members attending the AGM are invited to bring their books for display and sales.
•       all sales are at the discretion and responsibility of the authors
•       only one copy of any given book may be on the display table at a time
•       tables must be cleared and room emptied by 10pm
•       extra books must be kept under the display table in a labeled bag or small box
•       book display tables will be set up following the AGM meeting in the social time
•       Fed Regional Reps Ben Nuttall-Smith and Daniela Elza are in charge of the book tables
•       Purchasers and authors will connect during the social time

Shakespeare got to get paid, son

And in June I’m doing a fundraising workshop for the Fed:

Date:           Saturday June 19, 2010
Time:           10am to 2pm
Location:      Alliance for Arts & Culture Board Room 938 Howe St. downtown Vancouver
Fee:             $40 for Fed members, $50 for non-members (no refreshments included)
Payment:      PayPal (if up and running) or cheques to:
The Federation of BC Writers, PO Box 3887 Stn Terminal, Vancouver, V6B 3Z3
Payment must be received before the date of workshop
Receipts will be mailed
Register:      register with The Fed office by phone: 604-683-2057 or by email:
fedbcwriters AT

This workshop is a hands-on, intensive introduction to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other popular social media platforms, all taught from a writer’s perspective. We will cover the etiquette unique to each platform and how it can work to a writer’s advantage, how to set up your profile with a professional tone, privacy concerns, how to promote your work and your persona via social media and how to separate the work and the personal in the intertwined world of social media. This course will make you aware of all your different social media options and give you some perspective to make an informed choice about your participation in the social media space. You’ll leave the class with an active Facebook Fan Page, a professional Twitter account, and a LinkedIn profile, and a good grounding on how to use each to promote yourself and your works in a powerful, professional and authentic way.

I'm blogging this!

And, in related news, next Tuesday my intensive, ten week Blogging for Writers workshop starts. Here are the deets on that one, and YES, we can use the word “deets” now:

My ten-week Blogging for Writers course begins online 7-8:30pm Wednesday, April 21st 6:30pm-8 Tuesday, May 18th, then on Wednesdays from May 19th onward for ten weeks. You don’t need any blogging experience; we’ll build the blog right in the first class. You do need a computer with a mic, so you can join the Skype conversation, or you need an ability to type almost as fast as you think so you can textSkype and keep up. And, obviously, an internet connection of better than dialup speeds.

Here are the full details:

Blogging for Writers

Learn how to get the most out of blogs for promotion, sales, networking and (unexpectedly) to improve your writing.

In this hands-on workshop we’ll  cover setting up a blog, connecting with and managing an audience, using the blog for promotion and sales, and how a blog can make you a better writer, working our way through writers’ exercises and gathering feedback from the class. Be prepared to participate!

The discipline of a daily blogger is a prerequisite to developing a body of work that functions as your online portfolio. Use your blogging as a tool to develop a powerful, confident voice and tackle writing challenges in a supportive, low-pressure environment. Includes exercises and benchmarks to help you analyze your progress and keep your work growing even after the class ends.

I’ve offered this in abbreviated form before; this will be the first complete course, as opposed to an afternoon or a day’s work. There WILL be homework, and it WILL be checked (in fact, it’s due 24 hours before the next class, so I have time to check all the work).

Cost is $250 via Paypal in advance, email bloggingclasses at gmail dot com to register.

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Duthie Party to Remember, Party to Forget

Online ticket sales are closed, but you can still reserve (and it’s strongly recommended that you do) by emailing Lorraine dot murphy at gmail dot com. The Party is on Monday!!! The Shebeen has a capacity of only 60 people, so email and make sure you don’t get stuck out in the rain.

Book Funeral

The Patient Succumbed to Amazonitis

Help us celebrate the slate but always-great Duthie Books, one of the world’s great independent booksellers. Sadly, after more than a half a century of informed and impassioned involvement in the literary world, Duthie’s last location will be shutting its doors at the end of February.

Come out and reminisce and help us celebrate a great bookstore and an intellectual institution. This is a chain invitation, so pass it along to all who may be interested, either by copying it into an email, pointing out this blog post, or by inviting people by using the link in the sidebar on Facebook. Half of the Vancouver literati used to work there, buy there, or just try to chat up people in the Cellar (not as filthy as it sounds, outsiders!).

We will be accepting book donations for charity! All books and $5 from each ticket sold will go to the Stratcona One to One Literacy program. Keep books alive!

There will be many surprises there. Don’t forget to wear black! Full mourning dress preferred. Celia Duthie will be our guest of honour.

If you have a collection of old Duthie Bookmarks, please bring them in. They’ll be photographed for posterity and the best one will win a prize.

Ex-Duthieites are encouraged to attend, moderately encouraged to get maudlin, strongly encouraged to get into storytelling, and absolutely COMPELLED to get into the whiskey.

Come out and share your reminiscences of the deceased, and toast the memory of a fine, upstanding bookstore who never turned away an intellectual in need of brain food or met an obscure literary magazine it didn’t like. God, I’m getting weepy just thinking about it!

Details: Since we expect this event to be packed, please reserve your ticket in advance via email.

7pm till late

Monday, February 15th, 2010

The Shebeen, behind the Irish Heather pub, 212 Carrall Street, Maple Tree Square, Gastown, Vancouver

$20 (proceeds to charity) includes a drink and dinner, with a choice of:

  • entree salad
  • vegetarian pasta
  • bangers and mash
  • fish and chips
  • sleeve of domestic draft or glass of white or red wine

Dress code: funereal. Black beret and tame yet ominous raven optional.

N is for Neville by Christine Mladic

N is for Neville, done in by ennui. Check out the Gashleycrumb Tinies series by photographer Christine Mladic

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Reading is Sexy Calendar Launch

It’ll be a dark and stormy night, and all the crew will be gathered in …

the suburbs????

Reading is Sexy back cover

Reading is Sexy back cover

Yes, join Lorraine Murphy, founder, president, and diva of the Shebeen Club along with other Vangroover literati for the launch of the first annual Reading is Sexy Calendar!

From the Facebook invite:

Eat, drink and be merry all in celebration of literacy and the fact that I AM MAKING MY DEBUT IN A CALENDAR!!!! (along with the sizzlingly sexy Monique Trottier, Lori & Richard Yearwood, Patrick Tubajon, Raul Pacheco, Ian A Martin, Rayne, Lorraine Murphy, Mark Leiren-Young, Monica Hamburg and Ian Ferguson). Special thanks to Robert Shaer and Tris Hussey, whose photography has made this calendar a piece of art.

And aside from using this as an excuse to convince my literary buds to peel off the layers for the camera, it was done in the name of literacy. Thats right, we shot this calendar to raise money for The International Dyslexia Association.

So come hang out with us at my favourite wine and cheese bistro, enjoy a drink and some nibblies, get your calendars signed by the models, listen to a few of our authors reading from their works, and for those of you that are a bit more daring, dance the night away with moi.

The event is free and everyone is welcome. The more, the merrier!


Of course there is. More, even, than the chance to rub shoulders (and other body parts, if you play your cards right) with the sexiest writerly types in all of the Wild, Wiled West!

So put on your best literary party duds, whether Baudelairian finery or spoken word funkitude, and join us:

Thursday, 03 December 2009 at 7pm
Gudrun Wine and Cheese Bistro
150-3500 Moncton Street
Steveston, BC

Yes, it’s bus-accessable!

By the way, the super-sexy book I’m reading is a special calf-bound book of whiskies of the world, specially borrowed from the bartender for the occasion. I had a couple of Vanity Fairs in my bag, but they weren’t quite as posh and retro-looking as that book. Also, I highly recommend posing for calendars: the drinks are free!


Got this via Facebook. Sounds like a terrific event and a good cause.

As a born socialist and also a Canadian who’s had cancer, I’d like to let you know that no, BC Medical does not cover all your costs. In fact, for many long months I was on an immune system booster that cost $1700 an injection, and had to be taken twice a month; it was not covered until my life savings had been eaten up completely and I was forced onto medical welfare. Even ambulance rides are no longer covered, remember. And when you are ill and in treatment, there are many small things, like neck pillows, special meals, and support services, that can make all the difference between enduring and living.

$20 for poetry, community, a good time, a burger and a beer. Can’t beat that with a shoplifted copy of On the Road. Geddit?

Cottage Bistro by berglind_hafsteinsdottir

Cottage Bistro by berglind_hafsteinsdottir

Wednesday Nov 25th
Pandora’s Collective Presents
Pandora’s Collective and folks in the poetry and music community are holding a Benefit for our friend Marc Creamore, who is battling lung cancer. Marc has been an active part of Vancouver ‘s poetry community for many years. Join us in support of Marc and his family at this evening of poetry, music, spoken word and shared memories.

Tickets: $20 at the door includes entertainment, a burger with fries and beer. After costs, all proceeds go directly to Marc and his family.
There will also be door prizes, and Marc’s published poetry books will be available for sale.

6:00-6:30 Brief Introductions by Bonnie Nish and Ruth Kozak followed by
Poetry and ♫♫ David Campbell
6:30-7:00 Spoken Word Al Mader The Minimalist Jug Band
7:00 – 7:30 ♫♫ Jess Hill
7:30 -7:45 Spoken Word CJ Leon
7:45- 8:15 Spoken Word and Poetry Steve Duncan and Diane Laloge
8:15-9:00 ♫♫ Sandy Bone
9:00- 9:30 Open Mic
9:30-9:45 Spoken Word & ♫♫ CR Avery
9:45-10:15 Poetry Daniela Elza and Robin Susanto
10:15-10:45 ♫♫ Hi-Rise Dex (Kempton Dexter)
10:45-11:15 Spoken Word Bill McNamara and RC Weslowski
11:15-12:00 Open Mic Closing Words.

There will be an open mike for poets and friends to share their words with Marc.
Time: 6 – 12pm
Location: The Cottage Bistro
4468 Main Street @ 29th Avenue
Hosts: Bonnie Nish and Ruth K ozak
RSVP if possible
Contact: blinsh_pandoras AT yahoo DOT ca

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BC Book Prizes Online Auction closing soon!

What are you sitting there for? BID! Some of these items are going for 1/4 retail value! Bidding closes on Mondays at noon.

Please note, these items close on Monday August 17, 2009 at noon!

Arts Club prize package

Arts Club prize package

Two tickets to “The 25th Annual Putman County Spelling Bee” at the Granville Island Stage from the Arts Club Theatre Company

This Tony-award winning musical comedy is the funniest thing in seven consonants! “The 25th Annual Putman County Spelling Bee” pits quirky prepubescent overachievers against one another in the spelling challenge of a lifetime. amid infectious songs, the nerdy and wordy learn that winning isn’t everything. Valid for performance June 21 to 30, 2010. Value: $98.00


Two passes to Ziptrek Ecotours

Ziptrek Ecotours is the pioneer of zipline tours in North America! With an award winning ecological curriculum and the highest, longest, and most ziplines around, Ziptrek offers an entertaining combination of education and adventure. The Bear tour is the original tour and the one that made them famous! Five incredible ziplines joined by a network of suspension bridges, boardwalks and trails showcasing stunning aerial vistas over Fitzsimmons Creek. Fly through the forest and experience the thrill of ziplining! Value: $200.00.


hair comb

hair comb

Maquerade Louis XIII hair comb from Adorn Atelier

Handmade in Vancouver, BC, Adorn Atelier believes that modern women should have accessories that reflect who they are – fun, colourful, creative, and original. This elegant and bold hair comb is the perfect addition to special occasion outfits, or for the more daring, everyday wear that needs a little jazzing up. Measures approximately 10 inches. Value: $65.00


Repurposed and upcycled, red and black dresser from Semper Nova Rescued and ReStyled Home Decor

Found in a flea market and lovingly restored, this red and black bedside dresser adds a little pop! to any space. Cleaned, painted, and protected this dresser is ready to be incorporated into your home. Driven by frugality and a desire to keep good furniture out the landfill, SemperNova restores furniture to fit in with modern spaces and stylish sensibilities. Please note, this item must be picked up from White Rock, BC. Value: $150.00


carres charmantes earrings

carres charmantes earrings

“Carres charmants” earrings from Olala Design

These “charming squares” earrings are made from golden honey bayong wood squares adorned with charming bouquets of Czech glass flowers in topaz and green. Add some understated elegance to your everyday. Handcrafted in Vancouver, BC. Value: $32.00


Miz Darlin beret

Miz Darlin beret

Handmade beret from Miz Darlin Hatz and Joolz

With fall coming there is no better time to get a warm, cozy, and funky beret! Made with style and skill in Ladysmith, BC, this hat is a fun addition to typically restrained fall and winter styles. Value: $35.00


Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl by Tiny Warbler Designs

A tiny wool snowy owl for the tiny loved one in your life. Hand-stitched in Vancouver, BC, this little softie makes a great gift for a child or even a design accent in your home, that is, if you can keep yourself from cuddling her! Value:$35.00


Please note, these items close on Monday August 24, 2009 at noon!

Baja Beaches bracelet

Baja Beaches bracelet

Baja Beaches Pearl Bracelet from Angelque Creations

Inspired by the white sand beaches, electric blue water, and vibrant wildlife of the Sea of Cortez, Angelque Creations produces jewellery that incorporates shells, pearls, and beads that represent the lushness the land. The Baja Beaches pearl bracelet features white fresh water pearls and bronze potato fresh water pearls set with topaz and bronze seed bead accents. Approximately 7 inches in length. Value: $40.00


Laura Bucci purse

Laura Bucci purse

Pacific Tortoise Shell Linen Pouch from Laura Bucci Handmade

From Laura Bucci Handmade comes this stylish clutch featuring a geometric tortoise shell pattern in turquoise. It closes with a snap button and is pretty for a night out or for whenever you want to carry your wallet, cell phone and keys with a bit of style. Featured print and lining are 100% cotton. The exterior is 100% natural linen and has been reinforced for durability and stiffness. Value: $26.00


Charm Bracelet

Charm Bracelet

Lily Valley Charm Bracelet from New Fashioned Whispers

From the “Recycled Garden Collection” the Lilly Valley charm bracelet is comprised of vintage beads in all sorts of shades and textures, from pearl to crystal. Closed with a lobster clasp and tightly secured on to a brass chain. Value: $68.00


Silver Leaf Earrings

Silver Leaf Earrings

Sterling Silver Leaf Earrings from Apartment 49

Simple and elegant, this freehand-pierced sterling silver earrings are shaped like delicate little leaves. Perfect for every occasion, they are polished to a stain finish. And just as in nature, each of these tiny leaves in unique! Value: $35.00


Victoria Tour Package

Victoria Tour Package

Getaway to Victoria featuring round trip travel for two aboard Pacific Coach Lines; a $25.00 gift certificate for all services aboard BC Ferries; a $30.00 gift certificate to Munro’s Books; and two “A” level tickets to the Victoria Symphony

Zip away to Victoria on Pacific Coach Lines. Including bus travel and BC Ferries fares for two people, relax and enjoy the journey knowing that it’s all taken care of for you. Valid August 18, 2009 to August 17, 2010.
And enjoy a little spending money aboard your ferry to the Island. This $25.00 gift certificate is good for all products and services on the ferry. So why not grab a book at the gift shop, or a bite to eat to make the trip over as comfortable as possible?
When you arrive in Victoria, make your way over to Munro’s Books. Described as “the most magnificent book store in Canada”, Munro’s features a huge collection of literature, bestsellers, and children’s books.
Finally, round out your stay with an evening at the Victoria Symphony. With their mandate of enriching lives through the shared experience of extraordinary music, you are sure to walk away from the performance touched. Valid for any regular concert in 2009/2010 season after September 8, 2009 (excluding Classics concerts and special performances). Total Value: $346.00


How It Works

Bidding: Bidding is very simple. Send an email to martha AT with your name, address, phone number, email address and your bid for the lot you wish to bid on. The site will then be updated with the highest bid. Please note, these lots close on August 24, 2009 at noon. Please note, the minimum bid increment is $5.00.

Winning: If you are lucky enough to win your lot, we will contact you to let you know right away. Once we receive your cheque in the mail, we will send you your package.

Any questions? Email us, or give us a call. We’d be happy to help!

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