Tuesday I attended a meeting of the Independent Writers of Chicago (IWOC) a non-profit professional association of freelance writers. The meeting took place at the downtown campus of National-Louis University attended by approximately twenty-five individuals. I was invited by my new friend Jim Kepler of Adams Publishing and former president of IWOC.
The official part of the program was a panel discussion led by Jeff Steele. Panelists were Stewart Truelson, Diana Schneidman and Michelle Beuscher who shared helpful and thought provoking observations and realities of the business of freelance writing.
I had an opportunity to spend some time talking to one of the panelists Stewart Truelson during the social hour preceding the main event. Stewart’s online bio at IWOC describes him as a Video writer/producer and voice-over talent with a background in news and public relations. He is also, an experienced op-ed writer and recently published author of a new book marking the American Farm Bureau Federation’s 90th anniversary. From our conversation I learned he has an interest in History and we learned during the discussion that he wrote for Paul Harvey at one time. Stewart and I compared notes on how video has been and is being used in the business world. We agreed that video is not the same animal it once was but video on the web is developing to be a powerful new beast in the realm of business communications.
During the pre-meeting chat I also had a chance to speak with David Epstein and Noreen Kelly. Noreen is President of Trust Matters Group promoting workplace harmony and success in the marketplace. David Epstein’s business card says he is engaged in Editorial and Production Management.
After the meeting the majority of attendees retired to a nearby restaurant for dinner. I was happy to be seated with an old friend Brent Brotine who is a professional copywriter and writer of direct-mail pieces largely for membership programs. Brent listened with great interest and patience to what I confess seems in retrospect like my endless ramblings on a myriad of topics.
To my left was Michelle Beuscher of Beuscher Consulting and one of the panelists who was equally solicitous of my conversation. Michelle specializes in marketing related writing and case histories. She has been working successfully as a freelance writer for 19 years and is full of great information and insight into the business of freelance writing.
I want to thank all of the IWOC members I met for their generosity and welcoming attitude and look forward to attending future meetings. In regard to my quest of meeting 100 new people in 50 days I would like to officially add David, Stewart, Noreen and Michelle to my list as they are the people I interacted with the most. I cannot in good conscience include Brent as we were previously acquainted though it has been many years. So for the moment the count stands at Day 14 with 24 new people met.