[Electric Speed] Small but mighty mic | Finding a mentor

Digital tools and resources for creative people
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Electric Speed from Jane Friedman
A note from Jane

When Mark and I were searching for a new home in a challenging market, it was agonizing to decide: Is this house the one? Is this as good as it gets? Should we wait and see what else comes on the market?

When we finally made our decision, it was hard (for me only) to stop looking at new properties even after we’d already committed. What if we had waited a bit longer? Would this other place have made us happier?

I recently ran across the following wisdom nugget from Chris Ballas: "The goal of adulthood is to let go of the other possible existences and to make the best of the one. A successful adult is one who understands that it doesn’t matter which life you ultimately pick, only that you live it well."

The next newsletter will be coming to you from our new place in Cincinnati.

Jane

P.S. The most popular blog post at my site this month:
The Secret Ingredient of Successful Openings

P.P.S. There is more to this newsletter. Keep scrolling!
ISSUE SPONSOR
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Jane’s Electric Speed List
Here are some of the latest things I’ve discovered. (I am not paid to mention any of these resources; there are no affiliate links.)
A great USB microphone for traveling (or home!)
I wish I’d found this USB microphone weeks ago, because it looks like an ideal solution for whenever I use my laptop to join webinars while traveling (or while moving!).

Tula works with computers, phones, or tablets—and it can even record all by itself, since it comes with 8GB of internal memory and a battery. It fits comfortably in one hand, or you can use the built-in stand. Add in noise cancellation, and this is a USB microphone that’s hard to resist!

Looking for a mentor? How do you find one?
Increasingly, I hear writing teachers recommend that students find a writing mentor. This, of course, leads to the very natural question of how to find and approach a mentor, especially if you’re not in school or in an office/work environment.

I was delighted to find this mentorship manual from Bloom Season. It is a five-part guide to finding and building a mutually beneficial mentor-mentee relationship.
A clever way to get your family or friends to write down their stories
After I mentioned Tales in the last issue of Electric Speed, Abigail Welborn wrote to tell me about Storyworth. She says, "You choose what questions to ask [and] Storyworth sends one question a week for 52 weeks to your gift recipient, who emails back their answers along with any pictures they want to include. The price includes a printed black & white book at the end (along with the opportunity to go through and edit again)."

In Abigail’s case, Storyworth was a gift for her mom: "She was so inspired that she then expanded on her (already detailed) answers for a family-only blog with scans of old photos that she discovered from her mom, my grandma, who was a Ukrainian refugee in WW2. Obviously it doesn’t work well for people who don’t like to write, but my mom reported that she appreciated being able to write the answer to one (relatively specific) question each week." Thank you, Abigail!

For writers who avidly use Twitter
Typefully is a nifty tool for those of us who like writing Twitter threads and want the content to be more shareable (and, let’s be honest, readable). Essentially, Typefully turns your tweets into a blog post.
 
Maybe It’s Not Your Plot with Susan DeFreitas. $25 webinar. Thursday, April 14, 2022. 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Eastern.
NEXT ONLINE CLASS
April 14: Maybe It’s Not Your Plot with Susan DeFreitas
Plot is the number one issue that writers of fiction tend to wrestle with in their work, and the number one reason they seek out the services of book coaches and freelance editors. But these publishing pros know a secret: 8 times out of 10, the issue with the novel isn’t what happens, it’s why it happens, what those events mean to the protagonist—and, ultimately, what they mean to the reader.
Your turn: creating online quizzes
In the last issue, I asked you to tell me about your favorite online quiz makers. Aside from a suggestion to use Google Forms for such a purpose, I received one quiz-specific answer:

  • We’ve been using tryinteract.com for years and love it. Not only is the platform easy to use and customize, it also provides great analytics! —Dana Kaye

Other possible quiz tools: LeadQuizzes, OutGrow, Involve.me and Riddle

Next question: Do you use a drawing tablet? Let me know what you recommend. Hit reply to this email or share on Discord.
 
Free resources featuring Jane
Upcoming online classes
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"At electric speed, all forms are pushed to the limits of their potential."
—Marshall McLuhan
Jane Friedman
Created by Jane Friedman
I report on the publishing industry and help authors understand the business of writing.

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I made this as a reward for getting our packing done. 🍌
 
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