Friday, July 30, 2010
A Day With Dan...
Writing For Dollars Creator and Editor Extraordinaire
Q. Please tell Pen And Prosper readers who you are (although many know), and a little about your professional background.
A. My name is Dan Case. I am the owner of AWOC.COM Publishing and editor of its flagship publication, Writing for DOLLARS! I’m the co-author of The Complete Guide to Writing and Selling Magazine Articles (AWOC.COM Publishing). I sold my first magazine article in 1981 and have been writing and selling articles ever since. I am the current president of the Oklahoma Writers’ Federation, Inc. (OWFI.org), a federation of writers’ groups throughout Oklahoma and surrounding states (Kansas, Arkansas, Missouri and Texas).
Q. What was the inspiration behind your popular newsletter/site Writing for Dollars?
A. I was working as a computer programmer for a big corporation in the 1990’s and on the side, I experimented with the Internet. In 1997, I created a database of writer’s guidelines (the first one on the Internet) so I could learn database programming and put it on AWOC.COM. I had this URL registered earlier when I published a cartoon strip on the Internet. The name of the strip was “A Whole Other Country,” thus AWOC. Shortly after I created the database I decided that I needed to collect email addresses of writers so I could keep them informed about new or updated entries in the database. So I started the newsletter, Writing for DOLLARS! in December, 1997 with 109 subscribers. WFD was a monthly newsletter the first couple of years, then a semi-monthly (twice a month) and then three years ago became a weekly newsletter.
Q. What, in your opinion, separates a good writer from a great writer?
A. Discipline. I know many talented writers who aren’t published or who sell very little of their work because they aren’t disciplined enough to sit down and write regularly. I also know many writers who have turned into highly successful writers because they have the discipline to work at it, learn the craft, create business plan, and become successful writers -- even though they weren’t the most talented writer. Does this make them “great?” I think so.
Q. Complete the following sentence: Success is...?
A. Obtaining your goals.
Q. If your life could be summed up in a book or a song, what would it be called?
A. The Long and Winding Road.
Q. What would it surprise others to know about you?
A. I’m pretty predictable so I don’t think anyone would be surprised at anything I do.
Q. Have any favorite authors that you read in your spare time?
A. I have a long list of authors I read for fun… Vince Flynn, Lee Child,
Robert B. Parker, Charles W. Sasser, and Dusty Richards are a few that I grab their new books as soon as they are published. I read 75-100 books per year.
Q. How can writers improve their chances of being published at W.F.D.?
A. Read the guidelines - http://www.writingfordollars.com/wfdguidelines.cfm - and slant an article just right for us.
Q. What's your opinion on the social media craze and writers using it to promote their work?
A. That’s just it… everyone’s doing it. I’m not too sure if this works anymore. Writer’s need to be on the cutting edge. Try promoting in ways that not everyone is trying yet. Author Bob Avey was doing BLOG tours before anyone else. He got his novel reviewed in USA Today as a result. Bob was also one of the first authors to have his book cover completely covering the sides of his car -- he was mistaken for the pizza man when he parked at my house overnight. (Not everything works.)
Q. Any new projects or plans for Dan or W.F.D. fans can look forward to?
A. We have new books coming out to help writers become more successful. The latest, The Instant VIP: Insider Secrets to Fame, Freedom & Fulfillment as an Expert Author by Ronda Del Boccio, will hit the airwaves this week.
Dan left the rat race years ago and now lives on a small farm in North Texas.
He loves zucchini.
To learn more about Dan or Writing for Dollars, visit www.writingfordollars.com/
Pen and Prosper welcomes your comments or questions on this Q&A.