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Write From Home
Kim Wilson
P.O. Box 4145
Hamilton, NJ 08610

E-mail: kim @ writefromhome.com

Off the Page...

Think Spring
by Tama Westman

Tips and dreams, how-tos and schemesóthese are the topics that sell for spring.

Now is the time to consider tips on how to clean out those cupboards, spruce up the landscaping, and pick out new decorating schemes. Donít be a consumer who thinks it is still fallófor consumer magazines, itís spring!

You want to create articles that endear or bring a tear, make the reader look better, feel stronger and locate an inner confidence she didnít know she had. Many magazine editors are already into the planning stages for April and May, as they work at least six months out.

Do you have a great story for a special Motherís Day issue? Perhaps you have photos and shopping advice for surviving your daughterís prom? What about a reverse angle of that same idea for a sidebar? You could write 10 Ways Dads Can Help Their Sons be Gentlemen.

As the wind picks up and the cold creeps in, take a few moments with your cup of hot cocoa and draft out your spring and summer attack. Now is the time.

Fortunately, the 2005 Writerís Market Guides are already on bookstore shelves. Treat yourself to a copy and be amazed at the many new paying markets for do-it-yourself home improvement, home and garden and self-help publications. Got a great recipe for low-carbers? There are a slew of editors who might pick it up.

I start out December with lists, lists, lists. One for cookies to bake and ingredients to buy, one for gift-giving, one for decorating and crafts to complete, and another for spring and summer articles.

I pull together my resources, hit the magazine rack, watch HGTV programs until I am blue in the face and then write, query, write and sell. Getting a jump on spring today could be the secret to your success in 2005.

Tama Westman writes the Off the Page column for Write From Home. As a correspondent and columnist, she publishes news articles, feature stories and her column, Cuppa Thoughts, regularly with her local paper, the Chaska Herald. She has served as the editor of the award-winning literary magazine, Haute Dish. Her articles appear in several local newspapers and, nationally in The Gathering and Light & Life Magazine.

She teaches creative writing and poetry classes with the AHEAD program (Achieving Higher Education and Dreams) at Metropolitan State University in St. Paul, MN, mentors high school journalism students, and teaches beginning and intermediate writers at conferences throughout the country. Married with two grown children, she keeps her balance with a cup of tea taken in the afternoon in her English garden. Further samples of her writing can be viewed on her Web site, http://www.tamawestman.com feel free to e-mail comments to tama@tamawestman.com









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