Monday, June 01, 2009

Kathy Stemke's Newsletter Example Helps Writers Tailor Newsletters That Work

One of the questions I get asked most frequently is how a writer can use a newsletter to develop a loyal following of his or her readers.

I had the luck to run across Kathy Stemke's newsletter today. It is often said that children't fiction and other literature is one of the most difficult genres to promote so, by using Kathy's newsletter as an example, I believe many authors will find it easy to analyze their own talents, the needs of their book, and then apply those principles to a newsletter will work well for them.

Kathy is the author of three books, Moving Through All Seven Days, Trouble on Earth Day, and Sh, Sh, Sh, Will the Baby Sleep?, so she needed to craft a letter that would appeal to parents and educators, the group most likely to buy and recommend books for children. But she has many other talents besides and writing and wide interests. Too many of us forget that our past experiences can be woven into the kind of information we provide to our newsletter audience.

In Kathy's case, much of that expertise comes from the research she has done freelancing for magazines and organizations like The National Writing for Children's Center.

That expertise includes relationships, health and fitness, education, antiques, biographical personalities, literature, and biological sciences. She has been a dancer, choreographer, teacher, tutor, and antiques dealer. We are all cumulations of our lives and experience and often angles that will interest our newsletter readers can be found in everything we do or have done.

You can see from the above list that no one will get bored reading Kathy's letter, that many who don't fit neatly into her target audience will find it useful, too.

Kathy's "Movement and Rhythm" newsletter is full of the latest information, activities, and games for the home or the classroom. It includes topics like: "Why Use Movement to Teach?" "Musical Consonants in Action," and "Activities for Gross Motor Skills." Her readers are also updated on her book-related features like education tipster's upcoming events including her virtual book tour and her FREE teacher teleseminars.

Vivian Gilbert Zabel, the publisher of 4RV, author, and educator in her own right ( says "Kathy Stemke's 'Movement and Rhythm' Newsletter is a must read for all parents and teachers of little ones. I remember having my children clean their rooms to music, as we sang little songs. Learning through movement and rhythm is a good means for teaching many things, as well as helping children learn to appreciate music. After all, many of us still sing the Alphabet Song to ourselves when we need to check the alphabet."

This kind of endorsement is proof that Kathy is accruing a targeted audience for her newsletter so that it will attract readers of her works and help those readers with their own needs.

To sign up for Kathy Stemke's newsletter go to her blog at you're there you may also want to subscribe to get notices of her new blog posts on a regular basis, too.

I thought a sample or two of the things Kathy includes in her newsletter might help, too:

"Why Use Movement to Teach?"

.....Recent studies link cognitive skills to motor skill development. Scientists now say that because a child’s earliest learning is based on motor development, so too is much of the knowledge that follows. They have found that the cerebellum, the part of the brain previously thought to control only motor activities, is a “virtual switchboard of cognitive activity.” Scientists have demonstrated a connection between the cerebellum and such cognitive functions as memory, spatial orientation, attention, language, and decision making......

"Musical Consonants in Action"

Here is an example of a little conconant song parents and teachers can pair with movement to teach young children:

If you’re happy and you know it, bounce around b b.
If you’re happy and you know it, bounce around b, b.
If your happy and you know it, then you’re face will surely show it.
If you’re happy and you know it, bounce around b, b.....

If your happy and you know it, creep along c, c...etc

I will provide readers with a review of Kathy's newest release next week at I hope you'll drop by on the 7th of June to see how she is helping children and all those who love them with her books as well as her newsletters.

You can also learn more about Kathy and what she does at:

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Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of This Is the Place; Harkening: A Collection of Stories Remembered; Tracings, a chapbook of poetry; and two how to books for writers, The Frugal Book Promoter: How To Do What Your Publisher Won't and The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success. Her FRUGAL book for retailers is A Retailer’s Guide to Frugal In-Store Promotions: How To Increase Profits and Spit in the Eyes of Economic Downturns with Thrifty Events and Sales Techniques. She is also the author of the Amazon Short, "The Great First Impression Book Proposal". Some of her other blogs are, a blog where authors can recycle their favorite reviews. She also blogs at all things editing, grammar, formatting and more at The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor blog.

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