We all know that newspapers are in desperate straits.
But some newspapers are trying to bring in readers in "novel" ways.
Take the "Writing in Motion" project, a brainchild of one of the Albany, New York Times Union's bloggers. Writer Lori Cullen -- who was an intern writer for the TU a few years back -- now keeps a TU blog about writing "For Business and Pleasure."
Cullen launched the "Writing in Motion" project last month to challenge herself and a handful of other writers to finish the books they have been writing.
As everyone in the newspaper business knows, there is nothing like a deadline to get a person writing, and finishing, a writing assignment. Knowing this, Cullen presented the challenge. And it seems to be working!
All of us writers in the project are committed, and writing like demons. I know that my own productivity, on a book called Sister Mysteries (an on-line cluster of interconnected blogsites) is through the roof.
Will this project work to bring in more readers to the TU's blog page?
That depends in part on whether the newspaper decides to promote the Writing in Motion project. Often, the TU promotes its most popular blogs on the front page of the "paper" newspaper.
There is a long history of authors writing books by "installment." Charles Dickens' novels appeared in installments; so did some of Joseph Conrad's writing. Lord Jim ran for fourteen installments in Blackwood's Magazine from October 1899 to November 1900.
Interesting and ironic idea, to think that a newspaper could enhance its readership through fiction! Stay tuned!