Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Forced to Blog Before November

For anyone showing up at this blog because of a posting by Angela Hoy at, let me inform you that this blog lies dormant, with a few exceptions, except during the month of November. Thus, it's name....Write Nonfiction in November. Occasionally, I am prompted to write something newsworthy, as I did when the Amazon/Booksurge issue was all the talk in the publishing world and when I felt the desire to promote a writing conference, which I did in June (my last posting...not in April, as Angela claimed). I feel the need to at least explain that, should you think this blog is "dead," as she incorrectly reported. It is not dead; it lying in wait until November when the challenge begins again.

As for Angela's need to make me so wrong, fine. If she wants to make assumptions about me, fine. If you want to know who I am and what I'm about, read my blog. Then you'll know the truth. Go to my website, and read my work or my bio or my resume. Ask my clients and my students what they think of me and my advice and my work. They know the truth. Go to my other website,, and learn about me as an author and a person, if you feel so inclined.

Angela doesn't know me at all. She is basing her judgements on a series of emails and even on my attempt to clarify a statement about writing for free. She says I misread her rudeness. Is it possible she misread anything in our communication or about me?

For more about writing for free, check back in November...when I will have something to say on the subject and some guest bloggers will offer their expertise and knowledge -- and their writing -- to this blog (for free), because sometimes being of service by supporting other writers is just the right thing to do.

And, by the way, please look for this blog at in the future. This year's challenge will take place there!


Anonymous said...

i don't think it's a personal thing--angela believes writers need to get paid and you don't. personally, i'm tired of working for my portfolio instead of groceries, while your intent may be sincere, i know that many artists are simply tired of producing writing/art/music without the same financial security as other professions. hopefully the two of you can patch things up...

Nina Amir said...

I never said I didn't believe writers need to get paid. You are also making an assumption about me -- or simply believing what Angela said about me. I make a living as a writer and an editor. By all means, I want to get paid, and I want other writers to get paid, too. I just believe that there are some circumstances in which we, as writers, can -- and do -- choose to write for free.

Jane Saylor, Life Coach said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Just read the two posts (and I got to Angela's blog through your blog) and what she did was extremely unprofessional in publishing your exchange with a link to your blog - whatever her personal opinions might be.

Anyway, I'm on your side on this one, Nina. A guest post is rarely a paid position but a publicity opportunity. I understand her opinion that writers too often get asked to do things for free. But do journalists pay us to do interviews with us even though the interview will involve work on our part? In most cases, no - we recognise it's a good source of publicity.

In any case, it didn't warrant posting your exchange on her website with a link to your blog. Let's hope it just results in more readers for you!


Nina Amir said...

Thank you!

Actually, she published our exchange despite the fact that I specifically asked her not to do so. She got around my request by not actually publishing the emails themselves.

I hope you are right about the readers. You know what they say: Even bad publicity is good publicity.

Come back in November when there will be something more interesting to read!

Cherrye at My Bella Vita said...

I'm sorry it seems like an innocent request turned brutal. I don't know much about Angela, but I enjoy Writers Weekly and respect the website.

I understand what you were requesting with the guest bloggers, as I've been one and requested some myself.

Good luck with your November writing project.

Kate said...

I agree with Caroline, it was unprofessional of Angela to publish an interpretation of your emails without your consent.

On the other hand, trying to be fair, I don't think she realises the difference between writing for traditional print and writing for blogs. In a sense she is right, but not about this. Guest posts are a long established and accepted form of promotion. The blogger gets good content and the writer gets long term publicity which can often be far more lucrative than the £20 they would have made if they had been paid. It's a gig that keeps on giving. Contrary to what Angela says, many highly successful blogs are run this way.

Anonymous said...

I don't think you should waste any time on Angela Hoy. She appears to be a very angry woman, never happier than when she can provoke someone into an argument. She is also extremely rude. My advice is to ignore her.

Nina Amir said...

Thanks for the support, those of you who have commented! I appreciate your views.

Again, I do support writers getting paid. Of course. Why wouldn't I? But in this case, I dont' believe I was wrong to ask for a free blog. I do believe guest bloggers commonly offer their posts for free adn bloggers as for those blogs for free. And it is good publicity.

It's true this blog doesn't have a huge readership. How do you build a blog? With good information. That's why this year I want to supplement the information I have with the information others can offer -- others who might know more or have more experience or have another area of expertise. And I'm not excluding other editors...which means I'm not doing this to make money.

Now, if I get a client or two out of a month of blogging, that woould be nice. Did I last year? No. Is that the most important part of Write Nonfiction in November? No. If it was, I wouldn't be asking other people who compete with my business to blog for me.

For those wondering about how many comments I've received that support Angela and chosen not to post, so far only two...and a really mean email from someone who felt the need to take time out of their day to do that. I also got one from a life coach...which I posted and then deleted, because it didn't pertain to the issue at hand. I'm not posting the mean and nasty comments. I don't really want to give them more energy than they deserve. I'm happy to acknowledge that they did show up here, though, and I'll keep a running tally of them for anyone who really cares. Ask, I'll give you the current numbers, if you care.

(I admit I have posted one saying mean things about Angela...Sorry.)

By the way, I wrote a blog post about mean people in my very-alive-and-well blog, which does run all year long, at, if you are interested!

See you hear in November...unless there are more comments to moderate!

Thanks again!

Nina Amir said...

Ooops...See you HERE in November!!!

(They need to have a spell checker on these comment boxes.)

Nina Amir said...

By the way, I feel Writers Weekly is a great FREE service to writers as well.

Wesley said...

The thing is, Angela Hoy has more than 70,000 readers (possibly more, now) for her eZine. She doesn't need a promotion spot that will bring her another 20 viewers, but her name on your blog will certainly raise your rankings on the search engines and help promote your business.

Either you didn't do your homework, or that was a terribly one-sided offer.

Regardless, if you have as much success as you claim, it might well be worth it to offer to pay high-profile people like Hoy to write for your blog. Asking people to work for free screams, "I can't afford to pay you. I am not a success."

As for guest spots, well that's the first I've heard of them and I've been writing (for money) for decades. I pay my mortgage as a freelancer, and if I decide to volunteer my time it will be to benefit people who need help (children's hospitals, people in the third world, animal rescue groups). I'm sure you're a nice person, but really, are you worthy of charity?

C.L. Lorentson said...

I'll admit that I looked at your blog only after I read the write-up in Writers Weekly this week, but one thing I noticed about your blog-- that you used an awful lot of Angela's articles to beef it up, especially in the month of April. I realize Angela gives permission to reprint her articles when properly credited, but my point is that you've relied on her words to a large extent to float your blog, at least during your "dormant" months. I don't think it's unreasonable of her to expect payment when you pointedly ask her to write something for you. After all, you've already used so much of her words for free, is it really right to expect more? Looking at your blog, I don't really see where you are providing a significant service to other writers, other than encouraging them to "write nonfiction in November." Therefore, I'm not convinced that a professional writer should feel compelled to "give something back" by writing an article for you. Perhaps I'm missing something here, but my impression was that you were asking her to write an article, not a mere blog post. I'm not trying to be nasty or mean, if all you asked her to do was fire off a blog post, that could be another matter...

Lacy said...


I read Angela's column and I was prepared to be annoyed at you. But she behaved unethically and unprofessionally by posting -- albeit paraphrased -- a private e-mail correspondence and then posting your blog. The fact that you asked her not to makes it even worse.

I'm also surprised that someone as savvy as she is would not understand the difference between being a guest blogger and writing for free.

I suppose she wanted her loyal readers to give you heck. But, at least in my case, she lost the respect of one long-time fan.

Nina Amir said...

That's really too bad for you and for her...but thanks so much for your comments.

Nina Amir said...

If you look at November 2007, you'll find that I blogged 24 days out of the month on my own trying to provide decent information to nonfiction writers most of the time. As for April, I did rely on Angela. She was the clearinghouse for all the news on the Amazon/Booksurge mess. And I told everyone so...and sent them to her website. I wouldn't have even posted anything at all until November if it hadn't been that I know people do come to this blog all year long looking for information, and I thought that they should know what was happening with Amazon, especially if they were thinking of selfpublishing. During that time, Angela also linked to two of my blogs on her website.

I did as her for a blog post, not an article. I am looking for guest bloggers for Write Nonfiction in November to supplement my writing, so my readers will get more information than I can offer on my own.

Nina Amir said...

Wesley, I actually never claimed that this blog was such a huge success -- or that I was. I've done the blog for one year only. It has had some readers not only in November but all year long.

I've been a professonal writer 28 years plus. I've been getting paid for my writing for as many years, and when I was single I supported myself with my writing. Now I do a decent job of supplement my husband's income with my writing and editing.

But blogging, that's a different story. Blogging has little to do with making money. It's all about exposure on the Internet. So, yes, having well-known bloggers as guest on my blog will draw readers to my blog. But the reason for that is to simply let the readers get the information being offered, because in the case of this blog, I provide it more as a service than anything else. Yes, it lets people know about me and my company. That is true. But to really get exposure and business from the blog, I'd have to post all year long on a consistent basis. I don't plan on doing that with this blog. That was never my intention.

As for the subject of getting paid for blogging: In the world of blogging, I don't know of too many people -- actually I, personally, don't know of any -- getting paid to do a guest blog. There are some people who get paid to blog as a JOB.

Athena said...

I can't take sides because I can see the point in both. You wanted guest posts to provide publicity to those who write them and information to those who need them, but you see, Angela doesn't need publicity; WritersWeekly is already famous as it is.

I know guest posting isn't supposed to be paid, but generally (and I'm painting a broad stroke here) people guest post for free on blogs or web sites more successful than or equally successful to theirs which isn't the case here at all.

Anonymous said...

This is too funny. There are some times when I write for free (as when I write for my parish community)and times when I wish to be paid (which is often). All anyone has to do if asked is say a simple "yes" or "no."
Why quibble?

G. Thorn said...

Boy, did you ask the wrong person for a freebie!

Brandi Brown said...

Regardless of the Writer's Weekly debacle (which ultimately is just sending readers to your blog), I've bookmarked you and will be joining you in November. I've always envied the NaNoWriMo folks, but I just don't have the fiction bone at the moment. Here's to non-fiction success!

Nina Amir said...


Glad to have you aboard!

I did do NANOWRIMO one year, and loved it. I even finished that novel, but it seems I've been writing and editing nonfiction too long. I was told I need a fiction editor to help me get it ready for a publisher! One day, I'll spend the money and get someone to help me edit it. It was a nice change of pace to write fiction, but nonfiction is where my heart lies -- and my experience (28+ years).

As for sending readers to this aren't the first person to mention that fact. I hope that means we'll have lots of active participants in November.