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Writing For Your Club's Newsletter

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#1 mloffland

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Posted 26 October 2006 - 10:53 AM

Writing For Your Club's Newsletter
By: John Crilly

#2 Erix

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Posted 26 October 2006 - 01:24 PM

Thanks for that, John. You certainly put together some thoughtful guidelines for us to follow and in a way that makes the projects not so intimidating for us to start.

#3 Paul WB

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Posted 26 October 2006 - 03:29 PM

Great article, John. I am an editor for the Ottawa Centre of the RASC (Royal Astronomy Society of Canada), and I would like to borrow your article for being a guide for club members to submit articles. Thanks for the article.

#4 Todd

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Posted 26 October 2006 - 07:41 PM

One thing to keep in mind too is that YOU keep your club's newsletter alive. Don't be afraid to write an article and submit it to the editor. If you don't think that you can write well enough, try co-authoring one with someone else.

Not every article will or can be used but nonetheless, a newsletter is only as good as it's members make it.

#5 Peter Argenziano

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Posted 26 October 2006 - 09:17 PM

Amen to that, Todd. I've had to write too much material for some issues, just to fill up the space. Our newsletter -- The Voyager -- is usually 16 pages. Last month was an exception, it was 20. I keep it in multiples of four because it is duplex printed on 11x17 sheets, folded and saddle-stapled (8½x11 signature booklet), and the imposition requires multiples of four to eliminate blank pages at the end.

#6 stevecoe

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Posted 30 October 2006 - 08:43 PM

I will join in the "Amen's".

It is a great place to start. Please, turn off your "no one would want to read what I write" machine and just do it.

This is a chance to express yourself. You just never know what will happen, look at me, I started at my local newsletter and now have written over 100 magazine articles and two books on astronomy. Oh yea, and 20 articles for Cloudy Nights.

The tip I would give is the one I learned from a old timer many years ago. The best stories are not just written, they are re-written. All my best word pictures have been written by me and then left alone for a few hours or days and re-read. I always discover something I wrote that was clumbsy or could be made more plain with just a simple change in the approach. Word processors were created with writers in mind. Make use of them.

My other tip is write what you are passionate about. Be that equipment, observations at the eyepiece, astronomy trip stories or whatever else. If you can convey that sense of "Wow", then it is worth doing.

So, start with a simple outline, maybe five or ten ideas that you want to add onto and write away. Leave it alone for a while and read what you have written and make it better, then send it along to your newsletter editor and/or someone here at Cloudy Nights and start to share your enjoyment of the night sky with other observers. It will change your life, honest.

Clear Skies and no misspellinggs;
Steve Coe


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