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Archive for the ‘writing’ Category

Unrestricted (A Poem)

This new poem was written while on vacation in beautiful central North Carolina, I hope you enjoy it.

Unrestricted

Unrestricted by restrictive things

In nature’s realm from all things set free

Whether dawn or eve

What else can compare

To walking with feet upon the grass

And between trees reaching for the air

Nature shot by werner22brigitte

Nature shot by werner22brigitte

 

Skeletons (A Poem)

Here’s my newest poem. It’s a little dark but I hope you like it.

Skeletons

We all have our skeletons

Held back by closet doors

But there’s no need to fear

As they are bones

And nothing more

Ethical and legit practices for using content you find online

Since the very beginning of writing and art, there has been a concern over the ownership, intellectual property rights and usage of work that has been put out there for public consumption. And since the digital age of the Internet, things have gotten much more complicated.

In college, I studied journalism and part of my schooling dealt with media law and ethics. Oddly enough, the answer to many of the questions and issues that we discussed was simply “it depends.”

So, just for kicks, here is my personal perspective on this matter.

If the content is from social media…

One of the primary purposes of social media is for the content to be shared. Whether is be on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest or something else, it seems to me that the content owner who posts his or her work is essentially granting permission for others to share it. If they do not want this to be the case, they can make adjustments to indicate that the content is private or not meant to be shared.

If the content is from a random blog, site or search…

I suppose the usage of these items does depend on many factors. I suggest you use you intuition.

If the content is specifically marked…

If the content states that it should not be reproduced or reposed, if a Youtube video is disabled from embedding or if right clicking on an image is disabled, clearly the post author does not want this to be spread around.

Best ways to go…

For photos or video:

Start out with your own images or videos, if you don’t have what is necessary, look into public domain, royalty free and stock content. The next best thing to do is seek out content that is clearly intended to be shared via social platforms.

For writing: 

Create your own or seek out people who will create content for you. Another option is to use content from article marketing sites like Ezine Articles.

When it comes to giving credit:

Crediting is often not necessary for public domain, royalty free or stock content. If it is a condition of usage, give proper credit. Same goes for stuff from article marketing sites. If it seems like sharing is acceptable, crediting the source in some way is always a good idea. While Facebook, Tumblr and Pinterest pretty much automatically do this for you, not all platforms have such a feature. In that case, you can do something like tag the author or literally create a byline.

 

10 Content Marketing musts

Guest Post By Jessica Wright

When you are creating content with marketing purposes, you are doing it for Google to “read” you, but also, and maybe most importantly, for your visitors to engage with you. Without forgetting which your final objective is (brand exposure, leads, sales…), all your content needs to be useful and accessible.

Here are some rules you must follow regarding your content marketing:

1. Publish. Again: publish.

It is very straight forward, but still easily forgotten: you need to publish periodically. Your content needs to be updated. Any update will refresh it, like embeded tweets. Even if you think your website is perfectly finished, your site needs to be alive. Publish at least once a week and you will be active. Create a blog inside your site and keep it updated. Even if your content goes to another site. Link it, mention it, just write something.

2. Optimize your content for SEO.

Before writing you need to check the keywords people are using to search about the topic you are going to write for. Your content needs to be optimized, as well as informative. You can even do an specific SEO work for different landing pages and look for different ways of attracting people to your site. Then go to Google Analytics and check if you are doing things right. Optimizing your content also means taking into account headings, internal links, external links, writing on images and a long to do list that will make your content useful not only because of its words .

3. Engage with your content:

If you make your visitors happy with useful and entertaining content, they will stay longer, read your other posts, share and participate. Usability is very important for Google, as well as the time people stay in your site. If you create a buzz around your content by generating one that is worth talking about, it will be even better. In order to give to your audience what they want, you need to know what it is. Ask them, analyse them (Google Analytics will let you know their time on page, bounce rate, etc), try different things, and once you think you know what they want, start over.

4. Create long content:

Don’t be boring and meaningless, but the longer your content is, the longer your visitors will stay at your page. Embed videos within your content too, it will allow you to keep your visitors for longer. Some people prefer short readings, so organise your content and make it easy to read with headlines, images, abstracts, etc. But be careful not to increase the loading time of your site.

5. Think about all your visitors, including mobile and tablet ones.

How many times you haven’t been able to read something because it was just impossible through your mobile phone? With smartphones and tablets used for out of the house and in the house entertainment, it is an imperative that your content is 100% easy to read through these devices. You can check these stats too with your Google Analytics to find out about your audience and your performance. It is worthwhile to invest in the best way of adapting your content to all devices or making a mobile version of it.

6. Connect and participate with your community.

Humanize your brand, join the conversation. Only this way you will get people to engage with you, to be interested in your content and share it. Talk to people, let them know that you last post is awesome and will change their lives. If you don’t say it, it will never be known! Answer to every question, make the most of every comment. It will help your customers and Google will reward you. Link your content marketing with your Social Media, it is all part of the same strategy.

7. Create a post publishing to do list for every article.

Once your articles are ready to publish, they need to follow a process to make the most of them. And this process needs to be listed and checked every time. First of all, share it on all your Social Media: Facebook, Facebook pages, Twitter, Pinterest, Google +, LinkedIn groups, YouTube, etc. Then share it on any other networks and content distributors like Stumble Upon. Share you link in comments, groups, anything. Your articles are more visible during the firs 4 days, so you need to work on their distribution just after publishing.

8. Guest Blogging:

Write some articles in other blogs as a guest writer. It is useful to build your authority, drives new readers to your site and gives you quality links that point to your site. Good for you and good for SEO. Also, you can accept guest posts in compensation, but always if it is useful for your audience.

9. Take care of your readers.

Make it easy for them, give them the option to follow you, to comment, to find older posts. And take off any unnecessary things that are not adding (affiliate ads that don’t give you money, for instance). Your content needs to look professional, neat and user friendly.

10. Call to action.

What is your objective when posting an article? Brand awareness? Generate sales? Loyalty? Once you have set up your goals, you need to measure them. To do so, you need to set up a call to action (a click that directs visitors to fill up a contact form, download a PDF, comment the post, etc.).

This article has been written by Jessica Wight (@JessicaWight3), copywriter at Gloc Media, a SEO agency in London

Color symbolism in art and literature

The use of color in creative ventures has long been a method through which artists, writers and various creative types have used as a method of symbolism. And while some color symbolism is fairly obvious and has become a standard in every day society,  other uses can be more ambiguous and even unique to a given work.

color

Here are some examples of what colors may represent in any given artwork.

The absolute basics:

Black -

In almost every case, black indicates the concepts of darkness, evil, corruption, death and many rather negative ideas.

White – 

Conversely, white is nearly always used to represent purity, light, life and all that is good.

Colors with several (sometimes conflicting) qualities:

Red -

We often think of red as the color of love or passion. However, it is also associated with evil or rage.

Blue -

The old term indicating that someone is “feeling blue” has been associated with depression and sadness. But, blue being the color of water, is also sometimes intended to symbolize life.

Green -

Green is commonly the color associated with, nature and natural beauty. However, people are also said to be “green” with envy and sometimes called green when they are inexperienced.

Yellow -

Cowardice and weakness have been connected to yellow. But then again, yellow is also a shade associated with happiness and enlightenment.

Gold -

When we think of gold, we make think of power and wealth. But at the same time, it can represent greed, a state of hardness or shallow materialism.

Interesting huh?

 

Common delusions about translation

Guest Post By Jessica Wright

Translation needs a lot of creativeness when adapting what it is said in one language to another. If you speak more than one language it doesn’t necessarily mean that you can translate. Also, the lack of creativity of machines makes them unable to be real translators.

Here are some common delusions concerning translation.

“I was raised bilingually, so that makes me a translator”

A common misconception is that people who are bilingual are commonly great translators. However, this is not always the case. There is more to translating than knowing two languages equally. In order to become a translator you should be able to convert one language into another in such a way that the meaning is kept and the translation reads like the original and its context. There is indeed a big difference between being able to use two languages, and being able to translate between then, keeping the meaning and the general feeling of the text.

“I speak a foreign language, so I can be a translator”

Again, knowing a language does not automatically make you a translator. Even though people might be fluent in a language and feel comfortable speaking it, spoken and written languages are slightly different.

“Modern translation tools are so advanced that they can replace human translators”

We all have experience with Google Translate. Such translation tools are only able to translate a sentence word for word without taking into consideration the context, and more importantly-the feeling that the sentence should bring. And since such tools cannot understand context, they cannot distinguish between different meanings of the same word. In addition, they simply translate the sentence using its original word order, which in another language might sound weird or can totally lose the meaning. This generally is the reason why such translation tools don’t have advantage over human translators who can identify the context and the desired feeling of the text, bringing nuances and vivid meaning into the translation. However, translation tools can be useful to find out what a text in another language is (roughly) about.

“Translation can’t be that difficult, there’s only one possible translation for every text”

Having met a large number of language agencies offering translation services in UK, I can assure translation isn’t an exact science: there never is just one correct answer. Translation depends on context, feeling, target audience, etc. All these details give specific nuances to the translation. This is the reason why it is wrong to believe that there might be only one translation to a text. Ask five different translators to translate the same sentence and chances are that you will get five different translations to the same text, which are all correct. The importance of which translation is more suitable for a given occasion comes from the context and the desired audience- some translations could be more appropriate for the context and the intended target audience than others (however the rest of the translations are still correct).

Challenge to all the smart literature fans out there

So, just for fun…

with a little bit of an incentive for participation, I thought that I would propose a challenge to the readers of this blog as well as all literature fans everywhere.

Whether you’re an avid reader or like to write or both, this might just be right up your alley.

Think of one book or literary work from any genre, perhaps your favorite book. It can be poetry, fantasy, sci-fi, horror, a play or really anything else you choose. Now, once you’ve made your pick, here’s your chance to let your creativity flow.

Summarize your pick in the comments section of this post. Sounds easy right, we’ll not so fast. The summary can only be five lines long! The more interesting and accurate the better. Do you think you can handle it?

stack of books

While this isn’t a contest per se, as an incentive we are offering:

For best comment (as chosen by me) – Free promotion on at least 10 different social media platforms, a free links to your blog from this one and one year of a free graphic ad on the right sidebar of this blog.

For the runner up –  Free promotion on at least 10 different social media platforms and Free promotion on at least 10 different social media platforms and a free link to your blog from this one.

For third place (up to 10 winners) – A free link to your blog from this one.

Only comments posted over the next 30 days will be counted and please be original.

SAMPLE: 

The book (and now movie)  “Divergent” “Young woman in weird future leaves her family for exciting life, learns it’s hard, and ruins villain’s plan to destroy government.”

Come on now, show us what you’ve got!

 

 

 

 

The most beloved character type in modern literature

Anyone who writes or enjoys reading stories has at least a general idea of the various character types that make up the basics of virtually any story, novel, play or movie.

Of course, there are the villains, as more technically refereed to as the antagonists.  And just as obviously there are the heroes, technically termed the protagonists. Just perhaps the most beloved character type that is in use more now than ever is the figure known as the anti-hero.

Some people may be familiar with this type of character but in the event that you are not one of them, an anti-hero is essentially a protagonist that is anything but perfect.

Gone are the days with squeaky clean heroes who always make the right decisions and never cross any moral lines. Writers and readers have come to embrace protagonists with faults, personal struggles and other serious and not so serious issues that they must face.

So why is the anti-hero so popular? I would venture to guess that it’s because he or she is a character to which people can more accurately relate. Quite frankly, they are more realistic. Even the most shinning examples of humanity struggle with their own issues from  time to time. Nobody does everything right or always makes the right call pertaining to a moral or ethical situation.

Some famous examples of anti-heroes include:

Books -

Holden Caulfield – “Catcher in the Rye”

Scarlett O’Hara – “Gone with the Wind”

Movies -

John McClain – “Die Hard” series

Frank Martin – “Transporter” series

Television -

Patrick Jane – “The Mentalist”

Emily Thorne – “Revenge”

Plays –

Lady Macbeth  – “Macbeth”

Comics -

Batman

ah

Alone (A Poem)

Compulsions and fear

Please leave me along

Knock on someone else’s door

And pretend that I’m not home

 

On second thought

Please do not

Don’t burden someone else

But flee from here altogether, away from every house

 

This is the newest piece by Jason Greiner, the author of two poetry books and more.

Photography caption contest week four

We have now tcome to the last round of the Creative Dreamer’s four-week photography caption competition. Winner from the last three weeks have already been notified and are all in the running to win the top prize of thier choice as well as the prizes for single week winnings.

Now let’s get down to the final round.

Reminder of the rules – leave your most creative caption idea, limited to one word only, as a comment on this post for a chance to win a weekly as well as overall prize. For all details on the contest please click the link above.

Week four photo:

caption contest photo

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