What Makes a Reader and Character Connect

A Writer's Path


How does a reader connect with a character? This is a well-debated question, and one that many authors have asked themselves. It can mean the difference between a novel’s life and death.

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Using Gamification to Build Community and Create Leads #SocialSelling

Blog by @Timothy_Hughes

Gamification is a very trendy term right now, what does it mean?

Screen Shot 2014-12-15 at 17.50.15The main purpose for employing Gamification is to incentify, engage and improve user engagement.  In devising a “game” you work out the particular behaviors you want and then give points when people exhibit those behaviors.

For example, at a recent conference I attended, an App was provided to download.  Gamification was “provided” by offering points for leaving speaker feedback, looking at the exhibitors details, etc etc.  The organisers then hoped that people’s natural competitive streak will mean they will compete (results published on a “Leaderboard”).  To get further up the Leaderboard you need to leave more speaker and session feedback, all good behaviors.

Gamification is for Trendy Marketing People it has no Place in Sales, Right?

Screen Shot 2014-12-15 at 17.56.34Recently had a demonstration from a Gamification company called Rise (previously called Leaderboard) and it got me thinking. This is all…

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Kenneth Harper Finton


Try though we might, we cannot stop change from taking place. It is a natural process. Nature changes as part of life’s process because of the essential nature of change. Change is renewal and growth. It is people that pervert and oppose change for self-centered reasons.

Albert Einstein said, “The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.”

This is not a new revelation. La Tzu recognized that institutions and societies must change thousand of years ago. He said, “Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.”

So you wake up in the morning in a bad mood, somewhat depressed. It is easy to be depressed. Even your dreams can depress you. You can be feeling…

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Carpe Diem: the Elusive Nature of Time

Julian Stodd's Learning Blog

It’s stolen, wasted, invested or gifted, but, one way or another, it keeps ticking by. People often ask me where i find the time to write: it’s simple, i find it by not spending it elsewhere. And i try to spend it on writing before i do anything else (unsuccessfully today as i’m writing at the end of a busy day, a day where i’ve let time be stolen).


We shouldn’t just think of time as stolen or wasted: we can gift time: to others, supporting, nurturing and helping, or to ourselves, allowing ourselves time to read, to relax, to sleep or to learn. And we can gift it to society by volunteering. Similarly, we invest it in living: celebrating and entertaining, but also in the health of our communities as well as in learning.

Our time is stolen by processes, systems, technologies and people: inefficiency in design is…

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Pick Your POV

I agree with letting each person develop their own style.

Florida Writers Conference Blog

By CP Bialois

CP Author Photo

“The most common mistake newbie writers make is to head hop.”

How many times have we heard this? A handful? A dozen? A hundred? Yet each time it’s preached like the writing gospel. I guess the best way to answer it is with another question: What is head hopping? Head hopping is having multiple POVs (Points of View) in the same paragraph. That’s it. It’s as simple as that.

Okay, okay, so, you’re wondering what’s my thinking behind this post, right? Well, in a nut shell… Third Person POV. That’s right. Today I figured I’d talk a little about a couple of the different POVs we use as writers.

Whenever we decide to sit down and write one of two things happen. Either we begin with our usual style or we take on the character of the story. I admit, I fall into the latter more times than not. It’s…

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Social Learning: Global Reach

Julian Stodd's Learning Blog

As i sit at the airport, contemplating a long night ahead, i’m struck by the connections that reach out from here. On friday i’m running a Masterclass in Singapore, but already i’m connected to participants: sharing stories, building bonds, tweaking the design. To spend time together will be great, but our community, fledgling as it is, already helps me to learn.

Social Learning - Global Reach Our Social Learning Communities reach around the globe, connecting us in ‘sense making‘ spaces. Effortlessly.

Social Technology, effortlessly connected, effortlessly connecting, is powering the Social Age. Agility gained through the ability to curate, share and ‘sense make‘ within our communities. On our terms.

Organisations can be part of the conversation, but they don’t own it: it’s co-created with the community and stronger for it.

Which is why the first instinct of organisations, to procure technology, may be exactly not what’s needed. Instead…

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Cherishing our reflective space

Julian Stodd's Learning Blog

Three days of reflection, learning, sharing and connecting is a luxury: one that i value greatly. I’m just home after those three days in a country house hotel, spent with a group of around fifty thinkers, practitioners and friends, reflecting on our craft. It’s time away from routine (such as i have) and time that can be luxuriated on learning. It is, of course, essential to find such time.

Net Model - Community - Purpose Social Leaders must understand the purpose of different communities and take an appropriate stance when they engage

I was able to share copies of the Social Leadership Handbook with a group of people whose opinions and input i value greatly: a nervous moment as these are people who have seen the ideas develop, who are experienced, who will analyse and reflect before giving feedback. In other words, exactly the type of people we should be seeking out in our communities.

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Earning trust

If you plan on a long term relationship in the social media arena, you need to think about trust as a two way street. You must provide it and expect it, and not tolerate those who do not reciprocate.

Julian Stodd's Learning Blog

The currency of trust is hard won. The best view I have of it in an organisational context right now is “predictability and consistency of response over time“. In other words, we can learn to trust an organisation if we know where we stand, but if their response is erratic, we can’t.

Why does it matter?


Trust in organisations is different from trust in people. They are entities. The trust we invest in them is part of our half of the social contract. In the Social Age, as we move towards newer models of learning, we need to have trust in the equation. Where we ask people to disclose something of themselves, to share and learn within communities, we need trust.

But at times of change, it’s hard to see it. The very consistency we crave is undermined by hollow promises and change in circumstance. So we…

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The Frames of Leadership

Julian Stodd's Learning Blog

The Social Age rewards agility: the ability to frame and reframe problems, to deploy our communities and experiment, question and react at speed. It’s less about mastery of process, more about communication and collaboration. Social Leaders demonstrate a rounded skill set: a holistic mastery of these skills and a consistent demonstration of these behaviours over time. Reputation is founded upon this consistency.

The Frames of Leadership We can reduce leadership to be viewed within different frames, but it’s only in the holistic application that we can be effective.

In traditional terms, it’s a mixture of hard and soft skills: sure, there is an element of technology that needs to be mastered, but there is very little process. Social Leadership is more about storytelling, sharing and reciprocating than it is about performance reviews and competency frameworks. It may exist alongside these things, but the authority is garners is consensual, granted through the community.


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