I often tell my students that their books and articles can be enhanced by quotes from experts. Expert opinions can endorse your opinions. So, say you want to write about how depressed you get in the winter and how you think that is because the sky can be so grey at that time of year.

You can say it. And that’s your opinion. OR you can say it and then follow that with a quote from an expert, like this:

‘Lack of sun and daylight have been proven to make people feel down in the winter. It is always worst in the Northern Hemisphere,’ says Jim Spring, speaking on climate matters as the Climate 08 conference in Denver last month.

When I go to a conference I always take lots of notes, but only write down, in full, the best quotations I hear so that I can use them in my writing work later. Like in the example above, I always ensure that I make a note of the source of the expert opinion. Without that it is worthless. So that means I note the name of the expert and when and where they said what they said.

Why don’t you try quote-spotting next time you are at an event like this?

I write a lot about expat issues and on Monday I go to Families in Global Transition in Houston. I shall take plenty of paper with me, I can tell you!

First post

October 17, 2006

Hello there

I have joined the 21st century and now you can read regular doses of inspiration about writing, publishing and authorship absolutely free of charge.

This blog will be about writing of course, but more importantly, perhaps it is about getting inspired.

Today I want to tell those of you who live in The Netherlands that there is a free workshop at the American School of The Hague (ASH) in Wassenaar on Thursday 19th October from 7pm – 9pm. Led by the Transitions Team (the people who offer counselling and setting in support to families associated with the school, but particulary the children), this is called Writing Your Life Story and will help you to use writing as a way of making sense of your life.

Need to find ASH, then go to http://www.ash.nl.

Enjoy! I will be there of course.

If you know you want to write a non-fiction book but don’t know where to start then let me recommend my Release the Book Within course. It will be held in Den Haag on November 16th and covers:

Finding Your Voice
Finding Your Vision
Honing Your Idea
Getting Inspired
Planning an Outline
The Right Ingredients
The Right Recipe
Style Sheets
Publishing Options.

Past students call the course: ‘inspiring’, ‘packed with information’, ‘mind-blowing’ and ‘enthusiastically presented’.

To find out more please take a look at http://www.summertimepublishing.com/workshops.htm

See you there!

Jo