Monday, March 24, 2014

Unlock the Possibilities: Enhance Your Online Presence!


Created with Tagxedo
While preparing for a conference presentation, Enhance Your Online Presence, I sent a questionnaire to a large number of storytelling colleagues. I asked, “What is preventing you from writing a blog?” These are the top three answers I received:

1. No time

Indeed, blogging can be time consuming but that also depends on the subject and your writing style. Because most of my posts require
research, I spend approximately four to six hours on each subject, but I have also written and published a post within an hour. The choice is up to you.

The marketing hat is the most difficult one to wear but it is a necessary evil. Experts now say that potential customers must see your information at least 12 times before they remember you. If you are serious about engaging and maintaining a dialog with your clients and colleagues, a blog remains the strongest and most ideal platform.

2. Fear of the technology

You have all the time you need to design your template, choose the font, your color palette, decide what layout to use, you can even write your first blog post. Nothing will be visible to anyone until you hit the publish button. You are in control!

3. Nothing worthwhile to say


After I recovered from the shock of storytellers believing they had nothing to say, I comprised a short list of blog topics:


  • Share personal or professional experience
  • Turn a press release into a blog article
  • Ask and answer questions
  • Conduct an interview
  • Provide tutorials
  • Publish a list of links on a topic
  • Offer a list of ideas or trends

There are hundreds of ideas waiting to be selected.

“Blogging is good for your career. A well-executed blog sets
you apart as an expert in your field.”   -
Penelope Trunk

Blogs will:

  • sharpen your writing skills
  • build community
  • set you apart from the competition
  • demonstrate commitment and passion for your work
  • create your unique niche
  • allow you to share your knowledge and expertise
  • establish and manage your online reputation
  • increase your search engine rankings

My readers come from all over the world: Russia, Malaysia, Greece, South Korea, Thailand, Slovenia, Australia, England, Italy, Poland, China, Ireland, Taiwan, and the Netherlands, to name just a few. It is remarkable to realize the vast audiences we can reach through social media. However, this didn’t happen overnight. It took time, persistence and offering practical information so my readers will return again and again.

 “A blog is in many ways, a continuing conversation.” – Andrew Sullivan


I have forged some wonderful relationships and alliances through my blog, most notably with Bill Lampton, president of Championship Communications. He has featured me on his business blog, interviewed me on his radio show and included my work in his honor roll of Pinnacle Seekers . I've been invited to write for other publications, both nationally and internationally, in fact, this post is based on an article I wrote for a UK Storytelling Magazine. You never know where one connection will take you or how it will enhance your reputation, and work.

Would you like to take your business to the next level in a fun and accessible environment?  I invite you to spend time with me this Saturday, March 29, in my workshop, Enhance Your Online Presence: Blog It Baby! at the LANES Northeast Storytelling Conference in Amherst, MA. Then stay for Sunday’s workshop, Branding: It Doesn’t Have to Hurt! with me and my co-presenter, the knowledgeable Simon Brooks. Not only do we will give you the immediate tools to get your started, there will be additional offerings to take home to continue the process. Plus, we have chocolate! Details on the entire conference can be found at www.lanes.org .

By blogging and branding wisely you have the ability to take your business to the next level. I am a firm believer in the mantra “A rising tide floats all boats.” Why not begin to chart your own course this weekend by spending spend time with us!


Karen Chace 2014 ©

This blog post was researched and compiled by Karen Chace. Permission for private use is granted. Distribution, either electronically or on paper is prohibited without my expressed written permission. For permission please contact me at storybug@aol.com. Of course, if you wish to link to my blog via your website, blog, newsletter, Facebook page or Twitter please feel free to do so; I greatly appreciate your support and personal integrity.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

March Goes Out Like a Lamb...Folktales and More to Celebrate Lambs and Spring

Young Girl with Lamb
by
Emile Munier, 1840-1895

At the beginning of March I shared a blog post with stories about lions, courtesy of the old adage, “March comes in like a lion, and goes out like a lamb.” While spring has finally arrived in the United States, you would never know it by the calendar.

Here in Massachusetts we are expecting a traditional Nor’easter this week, but instead of rain, they are predicting more snow. It looks like the area where I live may hit the jackpot, with over a foot of snow.

As they say in New England, “If you don’t like the weather, just wait a minute.”
So with that in mind, I will continue to think positive and offer you stories of lovely lambs who greet the world in springtime.





The Little Lamb – Italy
This is a lovely version of Cinderella, Italian style! I could only find it in _The Collected Sicilian Folk and Fairy Tales_ of Giuseppe Pitre by Jack Zipes courtesy Google Books.
http://tinyurl.com/mg6ztv2

The Little Lamb and the Little Fish
http://www.pitt.edu/~dash/grimm141.html

The Sheep and the Pig Who Set Up House – Norway
http://oaks.nvg.org/ntales47.html#shepigous

The Sheep, the Lamb, the Wolf and the Hare – Tibet
http://members.home.nl/marcmarti/yugur/folktale/tale10b.htm


ACTIVITY

March Play: The Lion and the Lamb – An adorable, preschool activity based on the poem, _The Lion and the Lamb_.
http://www.brighthubeducation.com/preschool-crafts-activities/65462-lion-and-the-lamb-march-fingerplay/

ART

How to Draw a Lamb
http://www.wikihow.com/Draw-Lambs

BOOKS

Barnes and Noble: Children’s books about lambs and sheep.
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/?category_id=904465

Best Books About Sheep for Pre-K Use
http://voices.yahoo.com/best-books-sheep-pre-k-classroom-use-11987912.html

CRAFTS

DLTK-Kids.com So many adorable lamb crafts: origami, puppets, masks and more.
http://www.dltk-kids.com/animals/lambs.htm

Allkidsnetwork.com – Easy, cotton ball lamb craft; too cute.
http://www.allkidsnetwork.com/crafts/animals/farm/sheep-craft.asp

CURRICULUM

You’re History – This story behind _Mary Had a Little Lamb_.
http://yourehistory.wordpress.com/2012/11/14/sheep-in-folktales-mary-had-a-little-lamb/

Lamb Themed Lesson Plans Ideas for Pre-K Educators
http://voices.yahoo.com/lamb-themed-lesson-plan-ideas-pre-k-educators-11987649.html?cat=7

First-School – Preschool activities and crafts.
http://www.first-school.ws/theme/animals/farm/lamb.htm

Preschool Express.com – Lesson plan for the little ones: art, number recognition, language, movement and more.
http://www.preschoolexpress.com/theme-station08/lambs-apr08.shtml

Sheep 101 – Information about different kinds of sheep, the history of sheep, what they eat and more.
http://www.sheep101.info/lambing.html

FINGERPLAY

Here Is The Barn 

Here is the barn (Form a roof shape with your hands)
Where I like to go (Walk in place)
It's as tall as a tree (Point up overhead)
And cozy, you know (Hug body with arms)

Here is the barn, (Make a roof shape with your hands)
I'll go there with you (Walk in place)
To pet a sweet lamb (Pretend to pet a lamb)
And cuddle it, too! (Pretend to hug a lamb)

GAME

Spoonful.com – Wolf and Sheep Tag
http://spoonful.com/family-fun/wolf-and-sheep-tag

SONGS


Baa Baa Black Sheep
by
Dorothy Wheeler, 1916
Mary Had a Little Lamb

Mary had a little lamb, little lamb, Mary had a little lamb,
Its fleece was white as snow,
Everywhere that Mary went, Mary went,
Everywhere that Mary went the lamb was sure to go.
It followed her to school one day, school one day,
It followed her to school one day, but that was against the rules.
It made the children laugh and play, laugh and play,
It made the children laugh and play, to see a lamb at school.


Baa Baa Black Sheep

Baa Baa Black sheep have you any wool.
Yes sir, yes sir, three bags full.
One for my master,
one for the dame,
and one for the little boy who lives down the lane.


Little Bo Peep

Little Bo Peep has lost her sheep and can’t tell where to find them,
Leave them alone and they will come home.
Wagging their tails behind them.


STORY STRETCH

I’m a Baby Lamb (To tune of: I’m a Little Teapot)
* I found this rhyme on http://fingerplays-b3ok.blogspot.com/2012/10/newborn-lamb.html and added the actions the action to turn it into a story stretch.


I'm a baby lamb (point to self)
just born today  (rock arms back and forth as if rocking a baby)
I want to run around and play  (turn around while stamping feet)
I am very hungry, I must eat (rub belly)
So I'll grow up big like my daddy sheep. (bend down as you begin this line then stand up and point to sky)


March Comes in Like a Lion…Folktales That Roar!
This link will lead you to the blog post I wrote at the beginning of March.
http://karenchace.blogspot.com/2014/03/march-comes-in-like-lionfolktales-that.html

Two previous blog posts to welcome spring:

Birds, Bees and Butterflies
http://karenchace.blogspot.com/2012/04/birds-bees-and-butterflies.html

Spring is Here! Make Way for Ducking’s
http://karenchace.blogspot.com/2012/04/spring-is-here-make-way-for-ducklings.html


Karen Chace 2014 ©

This blog post was researched and compiled by Karen Chace. Permission for private use is granted. Distribution, either electronically or on paper is prohibited without my expressed written permission. For permission please contact me at storybug@aol.com. Of course, if you wish to link to my blog via your website, blog, newsletter, Facebook page or Twitter please feel free to do so; I greatly appreciate your support and personal integrity.