The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Friday, March 21, 2014

#atozchallenge Theme Reveal / BOTB Winner

A to Challenge Theme reveal blogfest
Gorgeous badge by Samantha Redstreake Geary

       Hosted by  Vidya SuryAnna TanCsenge Zalka, Guilie Castillo Oriard and Samantha Geary.  Visit their sites for the list that will lead you to other theme reveals.

My 2014 A to Z Theme:  Marketing  
        During the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge of 2012 my theme was Marketing A to Z.  I barely dented the topic during that run of the alphabet and since there's so much more that can be discussed on the subject of marketing, promotion, and other related topics, I will be once again presenting some of my thoughts about this topic that all of us encounter on a daily basis.   And as I've said before, marketing and promotion is something we all use in our own lives whether we realize it or not.

        Never fear if you are intimidated by marketing.  I'll be mostly tapping into everyday things that relate to each of us personally as well as on the level of promotion and marketing.  How you sell yourselves to others is an integral part of how you market whatever it is you are trying to sell to others.

         Hopefully I'll be offering some practical everyday advice that will have applications in whatever marketing endeavors you do or might be doing someday.   There's also another aspect of my April theme that will become evident on April 26th.  The A to Z Challenge is just the start of this theme.

          Please be sure to visit this blog in April for Marketing Concepts from A to Z.

Battle of the Bands Winner

       My most recent Battle of the Bands post pitted two versions of a somewhat obscure Carole King song called "Snow Queen".    I had a version by the vocal group Roger Nichols & the Small Circle of Friends up against the brassy sound of the jazz-rock band Blood, Sweat, and Tears.    

         Blood, Sweat, and Tears ran away with this contest with most of the voters citing the more lively tempo and clearer vocals.  A handful voted for the Roger Nichols group while others said they sounded "hippy dippy".

           My vote will have absolutely no affect on the outcome of this contest.   The BS&T version was new to me and I was biased toward the vocal version which I first heard in around 1971.  The BS&T version is fantastic, but it took a few listens for me to come to that conclusion.  At first the jazzier arrangement seemed too frantic and a jumbled mess to my hearing, but as I listened more I could hear the tightness of the band and the intricacy of what they were doing.  Still my vote goes to Small Circle of Friends.  I prefer the gentler sound and the superb harmonies of the vocals.

         Final tally was Blood, Sweat, & Tears 12 votes and Roger Nichols Trio with 4 votes.

          The next Battle of the Bands will coincide with the opening day of the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge.  Hopefully we'll see more votes on that one.

           If you are participating in Blogging from A to Z, did you join the Theme Reveal Blogfest?    Do you have a theme for April?    Are you a Carole King fan?   Were you familiar with the song "Snow Queen"?
Be sure to visit my guest post at Unconventional Librarian where I discuss one of my favorite books.
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  1. I love Carole King, especially her album Tapestry with the Grammy-award winning hit song, You've Got A Friend... a real classic! It won Song Of The Year and I think Tapestry took Album Of The Year.
    There are lots of other great tracks off that album. I'm trying to recall one or two... I Feel The Earth Move comes to mind.
    I'm not sure whether I know the song "Snow Queen"... will google it later.

    I've already posted for the Theme Reveal and I'm sure you will have some great marketing tips for us during the challenge!
    Writer In Transit

  2. I missed your 2012 as I was traveling in countries with limited internet, so I look forward to your marketing theme.

  3. I did have a theme, but now it's all a dream.

  4. Some might argue it is not a stretch for me, but I am doing Witches this year.

    Looking forward to yours, I always need more marketing tips.

  5. I am not surprised by these BOTB results.

    Why does your theme not shock me???

  6. What an incredibly interesting and useful theme - I will definitely be coming back to check out all the info. Marketing is one of the things I an not overly fond of.
    Tasha's Thinkings

  7. Not a fan of Carole King or most of the female folk singers of that generation.

    Marketing and promotion...that's very hard for me. I just want to make crafts and have someone else deal with the minutiae of selling it.

  8. Perfect timing Lee. I can use all the Marketing tips I can get.

  9. Michele -- "Snow Queen" is one of my favorite Goffin/King songs.

    Rhonda -- I seem to have a marketing obsession sometimes.

    Yvonne -- Dreams can be good.

    Timothy -- Witches can be an interesting topic and I'm sure you'll present it well.

    Robin -- I'm like a one-trick pony. Maybe that should be one of my BOTB songs in the future.

    Tasha - Marketing scares a lot of people. I'm going to try to have a practical simple approach.

    JoJo -- I think of Carole King as a pop artist and not folk, but I can relate to what you're saying. Marketing is not just selling stuff. Hope you'll check out some of my posts to see what I mean.

    Sydney -- And you'll be used in one of my daily points!


  10. Surprisingly I was a BS&T voter.

    I sure don't need marketing tips when it comes to writing books, but I guess we all do in a personal way.

    Look forward to it Lee.

  11. I love Carol King. Great theme for April. I plan on sharing your blog (posts) with many of my writer friends. Many of them don't blog, or don't join the challenge.

    Play off the Page

  12. We can all use more marketing tips.
    That's the reason I voted for the Blood Sweat and Tears version.

  13. Being one of the many writers that isn't really familiar with the practical applications of marketing, I look forward to reading your posts here through out the A to Z challenge.

    A-to-Z Challenge 2014
    Mighty Minion of Co-Host Nicole Ayers
    @Safireblade on Twitter

  14. I'm going to try to keep up with you since I need to learn as much as I can about marketing.
    I have butterflies in my stomach!

  15. You know I'm a big marketing fan, so I'm obviously looking forward to reading your posts. Carol King is an amazing artist. I used to listen to her records all the time when I was little.

    MJ, A to Z Challenge Co-Host
    Writing Tips
    Effectively Human
    Lots of Crochet Stitches

  16. Good Luck with the theme Mr B . . . . . . . I really should read it all as I am rubbish at this aspect of stuff.

  17. Jo-- I should probably call it something other than "marketing".

    Mary -- Try to get some who blog to join the Challenge! Appreciate the sharing.

    Alex -- So BS&T marketed the song better?

    Majik -- Many people overcomplicate the concept of marketing.

    Fanny -- I have a queasiness in my stomach too, but it's because I'm getting ready to go to the dentist.

    MJ-- Hopefully you will add to my discussion on marketing.

    Rob -- First marketing tip for you don't think of your abilities as rubbish--unless that's part of your schtick.


  18. Sweet! I will totally be here. (I hope--if I don't get swallowed by the rest of the interwebs.) ;)

  19. Looking forward to learning more about marketing from you, Lee! I really enjoyed the Blood Sweat and Tears version of Snow Queen.


  20. I would love to read marketing tips, so I am eager to read your posts. Great theme.

  21. I'm really looking forward to this. I have so much to learn about marketing! Wonderful that you are sharing more posts about it.

  22. This sounds like a great theme. Everyone can learn something from it, whatever one needs marketed.

  23. I could always use help in the marketing arena, but I don't know who couldn't. Excellent topic to cover, again.

  24. Hey dude,

    I've absolutely no doubt that when it comes to a marketing theme, you are da man!

    Theme Reveal Blogfest. After April, you will have the reflection posts about reflection posts about reflecting on the posts about the A to Z. HELP!

    Carol King and a bit of Tapestry, indeed.

    Have a good one, y'all.

    Gary :)

  25. That's a great theme, very useful.

  26. Crystal -- April can eat us alive once we start exploring the A to Z sites.

    Julie -- BS&T went over better than I expected with their version of "Snow Queen".

    Rachna -- I've yet to get tired of reading about marketing or writing about the topic.

    Julie -- I hope to have some surprising offerings on marketing that will make readers look at different aspects they might not have considered before.

    Carrie-Anne-- I want to break away from the concept that marketing is only about selling stuff.

    Steven --We can all use marketing tips and a pep talk on the subject doesn't hurt either.


  27. Gary -- And then there's the A to Z road trip for the rest of the year. We're creating an alphabet culture. Next we are going to start an A to Z religion-- What should we call it?

    Laura -- Hope it will be useful and fun.


  28. It looks like you're in the same boat as Tina...extending themes from previous years to explore other aspects of the topic that were not covered beforehand, which heightens the anticipation. You're onto something there in that we do market ourselves everyday, whether we are going to job interviews, on a date or just out to see a sports game with friends. In the latter scenario, each fan has on more jerseys and sporting more memorabilia than the next person, showing how much team spirit he or she has.

    Your subject on Marketing brings to mind a wonder of whether children are sometimes great marketers...especially if they have siblings; each child is trying to one-up the other kid to gain more favor among their parents with quests that say "I'm the good one" or the "more athletic one" or the "responsible one." The list goes on.

    Given the vast spectrum of Marketing, I reckon that you will be touching on a lot of great points with your A-Z material in April :)


    #atozchallenge Co-Host
    The Madlab Post

  29. Definitely going to hit your blog up for every letter!!

  30. I definitely need to learn about marketing so I am looking forward to your posts on the subject during this years challenge. Laughing at Life 2

  31. Nicole -- You know where I'm going this from the sound of your comment. I'm not going to get into hardcore marketing tactics, but the subtle stuff that we all do.

    Samantha-- Don't know I'm the ultimate source, but I appreciate the compliment.

    Donna - Hope I make you think in some different ways.

    Shawn -- You may be surprised how much you already know and don't think of it in terms of marketing.


  32. Marketing, I sure need to learn so much more about it -- the ins and outs of the ways it is used.
    Oh, I love Carol King, more for her songwriting talent than singing.
    Silvia @

  33. One subject I struggle with on daily basis. So I'll be taking my seat in readiness. :)

  34. Looking forward to you A to Z posts. I'll take notes like I did last year.

  35. What a great informative theme! I need to be a sponge with all this marketing wisdom, looking forward to reading them ;)

  36. This is my first visit to your blog, but I'm bookmarking it for April's challenge.

    This is also my first year to do the A to Z Challenge, so I'm pretty excited about it. I did the theme reveal today, also, and have been having a great time scouting out the blogs!

  37. Sorry to see Small Circke of Friends did not do better in your BOTB, but BS&T did a good version also.

    Have fun A to Zing!

  38. Ooo yea marketing! I like this theme and this will be very helpful going forward for all of us to find the best ways to help market ourselves in our writing and in sharing our blogs Teresa From the following sites Fangirl Next Door

    Stormy's Sidekick

    Quackin Over Disney Geek On!

  39. Silvia -- King wrote a lot of great songs, many of them hits.

    SD -- Successful everyday marketing can be a challenge for us.

    Susan GK -- You can help keep me straight on this topic.

    SK -- I hope I can keep it interesting.

    Lynda -- April is a great time to find new interesting blogs.

    Faraway -- It was a tough choice, but I did prefer the laid back vocal version.

    Teresa-- I plan to explore many aspects of marketing.


  40. I'm into all sorts of music and can admit to a majority of my collection being before I was born (I arrived in 86!) but I think I've only come across You've Got A Friend by Carole King. Would be interesting to listen to some of her other tunes.

  41. More marketing wisdom! Definitely not to be missed :)

    And whilst I liked Carole King I preferred Melanie. I could sing along with both of them back then.

    Have fun in April, Lee.

    Blogging from Alpha to Zulu in April

  42. You always share great advice, look forward to learning more. Thanks for supporting Tara, River and myself as Jeremy's Angels for the Challenge.

    Can't wait for the month of April to begin.


  43. I will be looking forward to your posts. My own theme is the launch of my book SAVIOR on April 18, so i will be posting on aspects of the book, whether characters, themes, etc. Check out my new page on the blog for Savior. Good marketing?

  44. Hannah -- King has a substantial catalog of music on her own and with Gerry Goffin. There are many of her songs that you are undoubtedly familiar with.

    Jemima -- While good, Melanie does not leave a songwriting legacy comparable to King.

    Carolyn -- Thank you for all you've been doing for A to Z.

    Anthony -- Hope A to Z proves to be of marketing value to your book release.


  45. You're right, marketing is such a huge topic to cover. I will certainly be reading and taking notes.

  46. I'm actually fascinated with marketing, and I read marketing books with great zeal, looking for things I can apply to writing, selling my work, charity work, theatre—just about anything.

  47. Hi Lee .. I enjoyed your 2012 posts - though I might need a revisit .. perhaps you'll link each letter across from this years?

    We all need to learn more and I'll appreciate all the thoughts you're sending out - so we can mull them through ...

    I enjoyed Carole King's music ...

    and thank you so much for starting this wonderful challenge off .. cheers Hilary

  48. I would definitely imagine you only barely scratched the surface on marketing last year!

  49. Jennifer --Volumes can be written on many different aspects of marketing. I'll be keeping it pretty basic.

    Kelly -- I'm the same way. I guess part of it for both of us is the show biz background.

    Hilary -- Hadn't thought about linking to those posts of 2012. Not a bad idea at all.

    Rebekah -- I guess I could use that same topic every year and come up with something different each time.


  50. You are a wealth of information, Arlee. Good luck and have fun!

    Jamie Dement (LadyJai)
    My A to Z Challenge
    Caring for my Veterna

  51. I'll be following your A-Z posts with interest, Lee. Maybe I can figure this marketing thing out after all. See you there!

  52. Marketing has got to be one of my least favorite topics! *ducks lamp* Now wait a minute, hold on -- I don't enjoy it, but I know I need to learn more about it. And what better place than the leader of the pack? I'll be sure to stop by and learn some stuffs.

    I'm participating in AtoZ, as well. My topic is writing in general + my current work-in-progress in particular.

    See you around!
    ~Andi-Roo @TheWorld4Realz

  53. LadyJai -- Some may call it information while others may have a less flattering word for it.

    Sharon -- I hope to put a different slant on some marketing concepts.

    Andi-Roo-- You're not alone. A lot of people don't like marketing. I guess I've been around it so much that it just intrigues me. I like to know "What Works" when it comes to marketing tactics.


  54. In one of the comments, you said, "I've yet to get tired of reading about marketing or writing about the topic." That goes for me too, so I'm looking forward to your A-Z 2014 posts.

    My theme, ‘26 Positive Takes on Life’ will generally focus on positive, truly heart-warming, real-life incidents (some drawn from my sales/marketing work) involving ordinary persons whom we can all emulate.


Go ahead and say something. Don't be afraid to speak your mind.
I normally try to respond to all comments in the comment section so please remember to check the "Email follow-up comments" box if you want to participate in the comment conversation.

For Battle of the Bands voting the "Anonymous" commenting option has been made available though this version is the least preferred. If voting using "anonymous" please include in your comment your name (first only is okay) and city you are voting from and the reason you chose the artist you did.

If you know me and want to comment but don't want to do it here, then you can send me an email @ jacksonlee51 at aol dot com.