Author Archives: Scott Carter

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WR 450: Writing for Publication (Spring term 2015)

About a year ago, the English department here at Western Oregon University approached me about possibly teaching a course on writing and publishing — steeped in the kind of practical, nuts and bolts knowledge that someone needs to know to write for publication today. I’m pleased to announce that it’s finally come together, and I’ll be teaching the course Spring term of 2015.

WR 450: Writing for Publication meets once a week, Wednesdays from 4:30-7:20, with the hope that we might get a mix of both traditional and nontraditional students.  It’s technically a hybrid class, with three hours face-to-face per week and one hour online.

The course description is below, followed by a brief Q&A about me, the course, and the kinds of students who might benefit.  Spring registration at WOU opens at the end of February.


WR 450:  Writing for Publication (4)

An advanced course on writing and publishing for a commercial audience.  Half the course concentrates on the techniques and skills needed to write  successful popular fiction; the other half concentrates on publishing, with equal emphasis on both traditional and self-publishing options. Topics include: scene and structure, creating compelling characters, developing a unique voice, manuscript submission, literary agents, copyediting, contracts, ebook creation, Print-on-Demand, movie options, and many other areas of interest.  While the primary focus is on short stories and novels, arrangements can be made with the instructor for writers of non-fiction. This is a HYBRID course; students should expect to spend 2-3 hours each week online in addition to the Wednesday night classroom time.

  • Instructor:  Scott Carter
  • Date/Time:  Wednesdays, 4:30-7:20 (with one hour online)
  • Location:  TBD

Q&A

Q: Who should take this course?

A:   People interested in writing for a commercial audience — in other words, writing as a professional endeavor.  What does it mean to write for a commercial audience?  Generally, it means writing for some combination of money, audience, or prestige.  Should you pursue a traditional publisher or self-publish?  Contracts?  Royalties and advances? Literary agents? What are the elements of great fiction, fiction that sells?  There are no prerequisites, but this is a 400 level course, so the expectation is that the student will have done some amount of writing before attending this class.  If unsure, however, email me at carters@wou.edu.

Q:  What are the instructor’s credentials?

A:  You can read about my publishing history on my author website ( www.scottwilliamcarter.com), and a bit about my work at WOU on my university website ( www.wou.edu/wp/carters).

Q:  Will it be taught again next year?

A:  If it goes well, I hope to teach it every year, but there are no guarantees.  If you’re interested, I’d suggest taking it now.

Comments from Scott’s Workshops

“Scott William Carter takes a conversational approach to his workshops that engages listeners and facilitates an open discussion in the world of writing and publishing. It was evident in his presentation that he was knowledgeable about the publishing industry and he was able to present the information in a way that was easy to understand. After having him speak at the Willamette Writers Salem Chapter, we had several attendees say he was the best presenter that we’ve ever had and we would definitely like to have him back again in the future.” — Heather Cuthbertson, Willamette Writers

“Scott has the rare ability to make learning anything about computers and programming and the new world of book publishing seem easy. He can get across the toughest topics with ease in an understandable way. I wouldn’t be making the money I am, or publishing so many of my books electronically, without Scott’s expert leadership. You can’t go wrong with Scott helping you.”  Dean Wesley Smith, USA Today Bestselling Author, Oregon Coast Professional Fiction Writers Workshops

“It was this class that enabled me to start my own press…Scott translates geek like no one else I’ve ever met and be doing so changed every aspect of my writing and business life. Thanks, Scott!” – Cindie Geddes, Lucky Bat Books

“Scott’s a terrific writer, he knows how to operate a writing business, and he is one of the most tech savvy people around. Not to mention that he’s a really nice guy, eager to offer his knowledge to one and all.”  —Mario Milosevic, author of The Last Giant

“He talked a lot about the changes in the publishing industry, writers taking control of their own careers, and the options available for writers. It was well thought out but not stiff, serious but light, and just all in all well done.” T.I. Cooper

Posted in Publishing

New Training Program for WOU Faculty and Staff

I have a little secret.  One of my best resources for keeping up with new software has been a company known as Lynda.com, an online library of over 2400 instructional videos. WordPress?  Photoshop?  Microsoft Access?  Lynda.com has courses on just about every topic you can imagine.

And now that same training library is being made available to all faculty and staff at WOU.

WOU has purchased five licenses that can be assigned to anyone for one-week intervals (or longer by arrangement), allowing unlimited access to every course in their collection.  This is a one-year pilot program, so I encourage you to take advantage of it.  The courses are all very modular, allowing you to either watch the whole sequence or focus on a particular skill.  It’s not just technology, either.  There are also courses on customer service, photography, audio production, and more.  For a great introduction to Lynda.com, as well as an example of the course format itself, check out the How to Use Lynda.com video located here:

http://www.lynda.com/Business-tutorials/How-use-lyndacom/77683-2.html

Here are three courses that might be of interest (you can preview the first few videos without a login):

WordPress Essential Training
http://www.lynda.com/WordPress-tutorials/WordPress-Essential-Training/154417-2.html

Access 2013 Essential Training
http://www.lynda.com/Access-tutorials/Access-2013-Essential-Training/115857-2.html

Excel 2013 Essential Training
http://www.lynda.com/Excel-tutorials/Excel-2013-Essential-Training/116478-2.html

PowerPoint 2013 Essential Training
http://www.lynda.com/Office-tutorials/PowerPoint-2013-Essential-Training/115468-2.html

If you’re interested in taking any of these courses, or others, drop me a line and I’ll get you started.  Only five people can use it at once, but you are welcome to reserve a one-week slot for a later time as well. I’m also happy to meet with individuals or groups to answer any questions or better explain how you might take advantage of this great training tool.

~Scott

P.S.  Check out the lynda.com latest releases and most viewed courses in 3D and animation, audio, business, design, developer, photography, video, and web and interactive

Posted in Technology Resource Center, Workshops

WordPress Level I (for faculty and staff)

WordPress Level I (for faculty and staff)

Instructor: Scott Carter
Dates & Times:*

  • Wednesday, January 21, 10:00am – 11:00am (1 hour)
  • Monday, January 26, 2:00pm – 3:00pm  (1 hour)

Location: HL 108

About:

If you have “create a better website” on your list of New Year’s Resolutions, this is the workshop for you. Whether you want a simple static website just for your contact info, or a robust blog loaded with links to your Facebook and Twitter accounts, WordPress can do it.  And it’s easy!

In this one-hour workshop, participants will learn how to customize a personal WordPress site, how to set a static page or a blog page as your homepage, the basics of posts and pages, how to work with media, password-protected pages, and some best practice suggestions.  What’s a plugin? What’s a widget?  Find out all of this and more in this hands-on workshop. Though the emphasis is on using the WOU-themed WordPress site hosted on our own servers, we will also discuss the pros and cons of using external web hosts.

If you haven’t jumped on the WordPress bandwagon, drop me a line and I’ll create one for you.  A WOU WordPress site is required to attend this workshop, though you may certainly choose to delete it later.  But why would you?  WordPress makes creating and updating a website a lot more fun and easy than it used to be.

Though walk-ins are welcome if space is available, please RSVP to reserve your spot in the workshop.

* On our campus, it’s always tough to find dates and times that work for everyone.  If these times don’t work for you, or if you want more customized individual help, I’m also happy to set up a one-on-one session in the Technology Resource Center (HL 124) or in your office.

Posted in Technology Resource Center, Workshops

The Technology Resource Center – Tutoring Hours – Winter 2015

The Technology Resource Center – Tutoring Hours – Winter 2015

The TRC offers drop-in technology tutoring hours for students needing help with technology-related class assignments.  Need pointers on creating a digital movie?  Tips on designing a website? Advice on configuring an Excel chart?  Stop by HL 124 during open tutoring hours when a Student Technology Assistant is available to answer your questions.

Winter 2015 Drop-In Technology Tutoring Hours

  • Monday:  11 am – 4 pm
  • Tuesday:  2 pm – 5 pm
  • Wednesday:  11 am – 4 pm
  • Thursday:  2 pm – 5 pm

What is the TRC?

Located in the northwest corner of the first floor of Hamersly Library (HL 124), the Technology Resource Center offers students, faculty, and staff an array of specialized equipment in a comfortable and friendly environment — whether for digital video or audio production, desktop design, website creation, media conversion, scanning, or CD/DVD duplication.  All equipment is available for self-service all the hours the library is open. For more information, check out our website at http://www.wou.edu/trc.

The library also offers digital cameras, camcorders, and other equipment for short-term checkout, handled at the library’s front checkout desk.

For Faculty and Staff:

Faculty and staff needing technology training may also wish to contact Scott Carter, the library’s instructional technologist. In addition to overseeing the TRC, Scott provides training and expertise on a variety of topics (Microsoft Office, website creation, digital video, desktop design, etc), as well as collaborates in the production of multimedia solutions — video, audio, print, ebook, etc.  He’s also available to provide hands-on training sessions for classes with technology-related assignments.

Posted in Technology Resource Center

Fall Workshops for Faculty and Staff

I’m teaching a number of workshops open to faculty and staff during the week prior to Fall term. 

9/23/14 – Q & A-Video Assignments in Your Class (9:00-10:15am)
Location:  HL 124 (The Technology Resource Center, northwest corner of Hamersly Library’s first floor)

This is an opportunity for interested faculty and staff to stop by the Technology Resource Center and get their questions answered.  What options do students have for creating and editing videos?  What types of cameras are available for checkout?  How do our tutoring hours work?  Even if it’s just a simple question, stop by and say hello.

9/23/14 – Faculty/Staff: WordPress Level 1 (1:00-2:30pm)
Location: UPCC C130 computer lab

In this one-hour workshop, participants will learn how to customize a personal WordPress site, how to set a static page or a blog page as your homepage, the basics of posts and pages, how to work with media, password-protected pages, and some best practice suggestions.  What’s a plugin? What’s a widget?  Find out all of this and more in this hands-on workshop. Though the emphasis is on using the WOU-themed WordPress site hosted on our own servers, we will also discuss the pros and cons of using external web hosts.
If you don’t have a WordPress site, please RSVP so I can create your site ahead of time. It will make the class go much smoother.  (And even if you decide not to keep the site, we can easily delete it later.)

9/24/14 – Faculty/Staff: WordPress Level 2 (3:00-4:30pm)

Location: UPCC C130 computer lab

Not entirely comfortable with WordPress yet? This is a great chance to review the basics and delve a little deeper.  Some of the topics briefly touched on in the first workshop will be discussed in more detail:  customizing the look of your WordPress site, how to use categories and tags, how to add multiple users, enabling or disabling comments, working with pictures, videos, and other media, and tips on how to give your site a little more visibility on the Internet.  While the level 1 workshop was packed with a lot of info to ensure people could get up to speed quickly, this workshop will allow for more time for practice and questions.

9/25/14 – Faculty/Staff: WordPress Level 1 (9:00am-10:30am)

Location: UPCC C130 computer lab

(See description above)

9/25/14 – Faculty/Staff: Powerpoint Without Bullets (10:30-12:00pm)
Location: UPCC C130 computer lab

If people complain that your PowerPoint presentations are boring and bland, then this is the workshop for you.  PowerPoint has gotten a bad rap over the years because most people never break out of the built-in templates and “bullet point thinking.”  Learn how to see PowerPoint as a blank canvas that you can use to convey your point in fresh and interesting ways. Considering giving up PowerPoint to use something flashier like Prezi?  This workshop might make you think again. Sometimes the answer isn’t new technology but a new way of thinking about the old one.

9/26/14 – Faculty/Staff: WordPress Level 2 (9:00-11:00am)

Location: UPCC C130 computer lab

(See description above)
Posted in Technology Resource Center, Workshops

Fall 2014 TRC Drop-In Tutoring Hours

The TRC offers drop-in technology tutoring hours for students needing help with technology-related class assignments.  Need pointers on creating a digital movie?  Tips on designing a website?  Advice on configuring an Excel chart?  No appointment needed!  Stop by HL 124 during open tutoring hours when a Student Technology Assistant is available to answer your questions.

Fall 2014 Drop-In Technology Tutoring Hours

Monday    4 pm – 8 pm   
Tuesday    2 pm – 6 pm   
Wednesday    4 pm – 8 pm   
Thursday    2 pm – 6 pm   

What is the TRC?

Located in the northwest corner of the first floor of Hamersly Library (HL 124), the Technology Resource Center offers students, faculty, and staff an array of specialized equipment in a comfortable and friendly environment — whether for digital video or audio production, desktop design, website creation, media conversion, scanning, or CD/DVD duplication.  All equipment is available for self-service all the hours the library is open. For more information, check out our website at http://www.wou.edu/trc.

The library also offers digital cameras, camcorders, and other equipment for short-term checkout, handled at the library’s front checkout desk.

For Faculty and Staff:

Faculty and staff needing technology training may also wish to contact Scott Carter, the library’s instructional technologist. In addition to overseeing the TRC, Scott provides training and expertise on a variety of topics (Microsoft Office, website creation, digital video, desktop design, etc), as well as collaborates in the production of multimedia solutions — video, audio, print, ebook, etc.  He’s also available to provide hands-on training sessions for classes with technology-related assignments.

Posted in Technology Resource Center

Tutoring Hours By Appointment Summer Term

Just a quick note:  We have no scheduled tutoring hours in the Technology Resource Center summer term.  Rather than staff our Student Technology Assistants during the much quieter summer months, we concentrate our budget on the much busier fall, winter, and spring terms.

However, if I’m in my office and my door is open, then I’m always glad to help. I’m in and out quite a bit, however, so if you want to ensure that I’m here to help with digital video, website creation, or other projects, then email me at trc@wou.edu.  That email will go to not only me, but anyone manning the TRC, and you can use it during other times of the year as well. Of course, you don’t need an appointment if you’re fine on your own. All of our equipment is available for self-service.

If you stop by on a whim and no one’s here, you can also ask for help at the circulation or reference desks.  Many of the full-time staff and student workers have received training on the equipment and software we have in the Technology Resource Center.

Posted in Technology Resource Center

Faculty/Staff workshop: WordPress Level I

WordPress Level I (Faculty and Staff)

Instructor: Scott Carter

Dates & Times:*

  • Thursday, April 10, 10:00am – 11:00am (1 hour)
  • Monday, April 14, 4:00pm – 5:00pm  (1 hour)

Location: HL 108 (the computer classroom)

About: 

As Clay Shirky famously said, publishing in the modern world has become a button.  And one of the easiest ways to publish these days is to use WordPress. Whether you want a simple static website just for your contact info, or a robust blog loaded with links to your Facebook and Twitter accounts, WordPress can do it for you.  And it’s easy!  

In this one-hour workshop, participants will learn how to customize a personal WordPress site, how to set a static page or a blog page as your homepage, the basics of posts and pages, how to work with media, password-protected pages, and some best practice suggestions.  What’s a plugin? What’s a widget?  Find out all of this in more in this hands-on workshop. Though the emphasis is on using the WOU-themed WordPress site hosted on our own servers, we will also discuss the pros and cons of using external web hosts.   

If you haven’t jumped on the WordPress bandwagon, drop me a line and I’ll create one for you.  A WOU WordPress site is required to attend this workshop, though you may certainly choose to delete it later.  But why would you?  WordPress makes creating and updating a website a lot more fun and easy than it used to be.  It can also be a great complement to Moodle.

Price: Free Event for Faculty and Staff

Though walk-ins are welcome if space is available, please RSVP to reserve your spot in the workshop.

* On our campus, it’s always tough to find dates and times that work for everyone.  If these times  don’t work for you, or if you want more customized individual help, I’m also happy to set up a one-on-one session in the Technology Resource Center (HL 124) or in your office.

Posted in News of Note, Technology Resource Center

Spring 2014 Tutoring Hours

The Technology Resource Center – Drop-In Tutoring Hours – Spring 2014

The TRC offers drop-in technology tutoring hours for students needing help with technology-related class assignments.  Need pointers on creating a digital movie?  Tips on designing a website?  Advice on configuring an Excel chart?  No appointment needed!  Stop by HL 124 during open tutoring hours when a Student Technology Assistant is available to answer your questions.

Spring 2014 Drop-In Technology Tutoring Hours

Monday    4 pm – 8 pm   
Tuesday    10 am – 2 pm   
Wednesday    4 pm – 8 pm   
Thursday    10 am – 2 pm   

What is the TRC?

Located in the northwest corner of the first floor of Hamersly Library (HL 124), the Technology Resource Center offers students, faculty, and staff an array of specialized equipment in a comfortable and friendly environment — whether for digital video or audio production, desktop design, website creation, media conversion, scanning, or CD/DVD duplication.  All equipment is available for self-service all the hours the library is open. For more information, check out our website at http://www.wou.edu/trc.

The library also offers digital cameras, camcorders, and other equipment for short-term checkout, handled at the library’s front checkout desk.

For Faculty and Staff:

Faculty and staff needing technology training may also wish to contact Scott Carter, the library’s instructional technologist. In addition to overseeing the TRC, Scott provides training and expertise on a variety of topics (Microsoft Office, website creation, digital video, desktop design, etc), as well as collaborates in the production of multimedia solutions — video, audio, print, ebook, etc.  He’s also available to provide hands-on training sessions for classes with technology-related assignments.

Posted in Technology Resource Center

Need DVDs duplicated? Documents scanned? The TRC can help!

Need DVDs duplicated?  Documents scanned?  The TRC can help!

Our Student Technology Assistants, who provide drop-in technology help during posted tutoring hours, are also available to provide support to faculty and staff on a variety of technology-related tasks:

  • Duplicating DVDs and CDs
  • Converting VHS tapes to DVDs and/or digital videos (for Moodle, etc)
  • Converting cassette tapes to CDs and .mp3 files
  • Scanning images, slides, and documents

There is no charge, though you must supply your own media.  Turnaround times vary, since our student workers do faculty and staff projects when not tutoring, though most projects can be done within a week.

If you have a project, drop me a line at carters@wou.edu.

What is the TRC?

Located in the northwest corner of the first floor of Hamersly Library (HL 124), the Technology Resource Center offers students, faculty, and staff an array of specialized equipment in a comfortable and friendly environment — whether for digital video or audio production, desktop design, website creation, media conversion, scanning, or CD/DVD duplication.  All equipment is available for self-service all the hours the library is open.  For more information, as well as this term’s drop-in tutoring hours, check out our website at http://www.wou.edu/trc.

The library also offers digital cameras, camcorders, and other equipment for short-term checkout, handled at the front checkout desk

Posted in Technology Resource Center

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