Off-Season Writing, Offhand

Tommy WroughtThis is a guest post by Peter Felton, author of “Tommy Wrought“.

Peter Felton was born and raised in San Francisco, CA. He is the author of two books: Daily Public Transit Ridership: The Inside Scoop (2012), and Tommy Wrought: A Musical Reflection of Children With Special Needs (2015).

Felton’s well-rounded exposure to the multifaceted offerings of the world of American education as both a student and teacher has led him to a lifelong career serving numerous roles in a variety of schools touching upon all scholastic angles of the academic spectrum: public, independent private (co-ed, and single-sex [covering each gender]), parochial, cooperative, immersion, and special education.

Felton remains a firm advocate for the importance of integrating music and the arts into everyday learning, regularly exhibiting elements of each in his own routine instruction, working with students in all grades K-12.

To learn more about Peter Felton, visit:
-Author Page on Facebook (

-Learn Through Music and Lyrics:

Peter Felton


It goes without saying that writing, publishing, and promoting our books gives us authors an unprecedented feeling of accomplishment and gratification.  Reaching that milestone in our professional lives provides us with a new persona in the public eye and makes people think of us in an entirely new light.  But with that elation also comes mental exhaustion.  When you combine the amount of time and dedication spent towards completing the extensive processes of writing, editing, publishing, and promoting your book(s), the grand total comes to several years’ worth of hard psychological labor that eventually (albeit temporarily) takes the wind out of our creative sails at the end of the thrilling ride.  Although we want to continue exerting energy towards expressing ourselves through writing in hopes of gaining further public exposure and greater fame without delay, there comes a time when our enlightened minds demand that we allow them some rightfully earned rest and relaxation after the long journey recently completed.  Despite our efforts towards sparking some literary innovation from our precious brain cells, our psyches simply resort to either developing writer’s block, or briefly becoming emptyheaded while our system’s battery energizes itself in preparation for our next literary masterpiece in the making down the line.  But even though our internal networking may be momentarily shut down due to the fatigue of celebrity superstardom, there remains a variety of literary alternatives to penning the ultimate publication (books) that can still bring equal satisfaction to our souls’ hunger for engaging in the written word and achieving further public awareness of our undying literary talents.

Thanks to the increasing range of online means of communication and marketing opportunities, more and more of what we say, think, and how we present ourselves to the world becomes documented electronically, in turn making a statement to the world at large about what we stand for through an expressive writing style all our own.  And since social media allows absolutely anybody endless opportunities for viewing, sharing, and responding to our written thoughts spur-of-the-moment, why not take advantage of this phenomenon to express your top-notch writing skills to the entire universe?  Even though social media websites essentially entail short and simple means of conversational written English among users, when it comes to status updates or descriptions of shared articles and photographs of interest, those frequent moments unlock the door (via a password first) for written announcements of our own accord to be made readily available to the newsfeeds of the human race as a whole.  Given how much time people spend interacting with strangers online day-in-and-day-out, it would only seem appropriate to give the written word a highly overdue good name on the given platform, (hopefully) overshadowing the otherwise frivolous tarnishing of the English dialect via constant profanity and personal attacks strewn among less literate users of this public method of communication that often gets taken for granted.  (Little does the everyday online user know: when combining the ordered sentences comprising the fierce language conjured up from within random comments made directly by certain identifiable users by screenname to their newfound online “opponents,” separately, they/you end up unintentionally devising one heck of a cluster of argumentative essays discussing a topic of interest with their “mortal enemies” in an unconventional debate setting!  [Note: while participating in online battles yourself is definitely ill advised, one cannot help but stumble across their literary oxymorons during routine online activities.])

But while the stubborn online battlefield is busy withering away at people’s (lack of) courtesy towards one another, another forum exists within the worldwide web that allows for more complimentary communication to be delivered and responded to in an uplifting way.  That realm takes the form of home shopping networks such as Amazon and review sites like Yelp that allow customers who have bought products and/or tried services and businesses, countless opportunities to reveal to the curious human world their true thoughts on a given constituent in any of the above subcategories.  Unlike the informality of online commentary on social media and other electronic public forums, when it comes to writing a review of a purchased product, business visited, or service sampled, every reviewer must think carefully about HOW they wish to review the highlighted selection in question.  Will it be a good review, a bad review, or a more 50/50 evaluation?  Apart from conveying their own personal experiences with the reviewed material, the anonymous writer wishes to persuade the interested public audience to share their underlying opinion by (not) going forward and experiencing the elements of the corresponding offerings themselves.  Unless the reviewer makes a convincing case one way or another, online onlookers will simply shrug their shoulders as to the true value of their recent perusal based on the reviewer’s overly simple, ineffective judgment featuring a mere numbered-star rating with very little written follow-through.  Just like the unrealized argumentative essays constructed by arguing online users on social media or video websites welcoming public commentary, it takes a convincing thesis statement to attract a following to your written output, in hopes of swaying people to your stance on a particular issue.  Only the strongest of writers (who just may be authors on the side) know how to handle that strategy most effectively, in turn earning huge numbers of Likes and confirmations that your reviews proved helpful in convincing a customer to go through with their online purchases and/or give the chosen business services a try!

Now for many, seeing is believing.  And thanks to the wonders of YouTube and selfies, all it takes is the tap of a button to broadcast yourself inside and out to the entire planet without fail.  But along with the oral-visual art of digital expression come several additional opportunities for writing on the video network ideal.  Apart from the public feedback so eloquently provided by everyday people upon viewing the growing multitude of uploaded videos on the above network, those users who wish to take things a step or two further and actually add their own channel to the expanding antennae of the computerized television network, are allowed to unveil their writing skills and potential to the mass internet media with every playlist created and video added thereto.  Upon quantitatively increasing the menu of online videography, the literary element soon takes equal hold in terms of grabbing the audience by the head and giving them an explicative run like never before!  While building a basic playlist with a self-explanatory title, belonging to a YouTube channel containing an attractive headline, is definitely enticing to the eye, developing an accompanying written narrative to the individual videos included therein adds the icing to the cake in the sweetest way—by giving viewers free access to your very own writing skills all throughout the process!  In the space provided within the right-hand column beside each listed video clip, you, the channel creator, get to create a short spiel on the contextual significance of the video located in the clickable link immediately to the left.  Although character count is limited, maximizing the possibilities of integrating attractive language within the subsequent short paragraph(s) at hand can and will make the given videos appear all the more appealing to every new viewer-turned-channel subscriber, thus increasing your own global popularity by the minute!  When you expand your writing horizons within your own channeled territory on YouTube, by typing elaborate descriptions of each newly-compiled playlist in the expanded space provided beneath the title itself, your true authorhood shines through like a charm—with viewers possibly recognizing your writing style from having: a) read your descriptions of the playlists’ videos thereon; b) read your reviews of products or services on websites such as Amazon and Yelp; or best of all c) given your literary masterpieces a thorough examination.  If any or all of the above three options have not yet been explored by your online following, you can bet that at least one “convert” will spring into action and give your literary expertise a true taste to the fullest!  And you can only thank yourself for igniting their newfound interest.

So whenever your brain feels like it needs a vacation from book writing, rest assured, there are always alternative exercises to the ultimate means of written expression which can prove equally fruitful both internally and commercially.  When your brain tells you that the time has come to pen your next novel or other literary wonder for the public to behold, your mind will now be fully recharged to the highest level of readiness thanks to your having kept it 100% fresh by engaging in ordinary means of written communication with the same audiences you have been trying to reach all along in your more colorful literary inventions.  As is the case with all authors everywhere, we owe the public an equal debt of gratitude for reading our work to that which they show us upon learning of and experiencing our own literary talents time and time again.

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