Publisher List

As a knockoff of my literary agent list, I have decided to supply you with the short list of publishers I have contacted for my latest book venture. After querying agencies for a few months, I started contacting more mid-range publishers with the hopes of avoiding agencies altogether. This is not to say that bypassing an agent is beneficial to everyone; I think it's worthwhile in my case for a few reasons:

Woman wins after being fired for 'confrontational' email

There are numerous ways to get people's attention in an email, although, let's face it, people would rather watch YouTube videos than read emails. But if you work at the New Zealand firm ProCare, you may want to avoid anything other than basic black text. Two years ago, the company fired Vicki Walker for sending an email that highlighted a specific date and time in red, as well as an important message in all caps.

Mapping the reviews

I meant to do this a long time ago, but I wanted to determine how many states I've covered with "The Developers" reviews. By this count, it looks like 18 plus Washington D.C. It would be pretty cool to hear from someone in every state, but let's face it, how many copies of my book are lying around in South Dakota?

Keep people out of your workspace

It happens to everyone ... you're trying to finish some work, but that crazy guy/boss/stalker chick/cougher/obnoxiously loud lady keeps pestering you every five minutes. How do you solve this crisis?

Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to CubeGuard. It's essentially a banner you stretch across your cube entrance to keep out unwanted souls, which enables you to "Protect Your Productivity." Choose from a few standard messages or even create your own custom message?

News Corp going 2002 and charging for all content

Rupert Murdoch, the only reason I can think of that you would change all of the News Corporation websites to a pay-for-content model is that you got your hand stuck in the intertubes.

Are you trying to limit the amount of traffic to your websites? Would you prefer that only rich people read your content? Do you think people will pay not with money, but with Coke Rewards points?

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Random News

Cell phone all you need to compare prices

During a normal week, I probably receive circulars from 15 different grocery stores, which I assume are in my area. I have visited many of them; others are a little too far out of my way; and still others are no where to be found. One reason I've tried a few of them is to compare prices. More often than not, there are good enough sales to warrant specific trips. Although, sometimes that backfires, as was the case in a recent trip to SuperFresh.

Your computer equipment needs a bath

There are things I'd rather do than clean my computer

mouse. Really, there are. For instance, licking envelopes

is fun. I also like to cut duct tape with dull scissors.

The thing that separates these other items with cleaning

a mouse is that I need my mouse to perform about 95

percent of my work duties. I need duct tape and envelopes

the other 5 percent whenever I mail chain letters to

Does technology create or inhibit crime?

Many people are familiar with the movie "Catch Me If You Can," which describes the early life of Frank Abagnale and his ability to change identities at a moment's notice. Some know this was based on a true story, and even fewer people know that Abagnale worked with the FBI for 32 years to thwart identity theft.

Next stop ... New York City

This weekend (June 2-3), I will be attending Book Expo America, dubbed the "premier event serving the U.S. book publishing industry." My primary reason for attending is that I'm currently working on a new workplace humor memoir, and I'm looking to meet agents and publishers to pitch my book. I am also interested in networking with others and compiling a list for reciprocal web links. At the minimum, I'll be visiting a new city, so I'm pretty hyped about that.

Oh, and of course, I'll be pitching "The Developers" and my newest project, "Polos to Ties," as I go.

Busy busy September

I will be making three book appearances in September, marking my first events since the early summer. Yeah, work and other things have gotten in the way! First, on Sept. 13, I will be selling books and raising money for the Waverly branch of Baltimore's Pratt Library. I'll also be there doing a little volunteer work, as I tutor at the Waverly library on a weekly basis.

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