Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Holiday Update


Hello Folks!


This is a long overdue "hello" to all who follow my blog, or who, as may be your case, stumble across it (it that proper English? Anyone...?)


Misc. news to report includes:

--> Many new wonderful clients who I will feature here in the months to come.

--> A new addition to our family will be arriving sometime in April... in case you hadn't caught that one yet. I am currently enjoying the "all-you-can-eat" version of a Merry Christmas.

--> Confessions of an Introvert is slated to be released in February. If you have already read a copy - you can review it on Amazon or on the Source books site. Remember that reviews can only help my overall success--and the time you take on them may very well buy you a cup of coffee at Starbucks--not that I am paying for reviews of anything like that... that wouldn't be cool... just that I appreciate your honest feedback, and I really like Starbucks.

--> I will be traveling over the Christmas holiday, so if you are looking for me--try facebook or email. No promises on a fast reply, but I will be checking in every so often.

That is all for my brief update, but I did want to say Happy Holidays. Thank you to all who have supported me in the past year. Thank you to my clients, family, friends, readers, web/blog/facebook visitors. Thank you and Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. 2009 is going to be an amazing year, and I am so glad I get to share it with you!


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Black Hole

There is a black hole in my computer. Or maybe it is a time-warp. Or... a black hole that causes time warps? dunno. All I am sure of is that I sat down with my laptop about three hours ago and have yet to log any hours on my client time sheet.

That isn't to say that I haven't been writing -- even blogging. Done both. Just nothing billable, and frankly, I have spent a crazy amount of time just surfing. The Internet is an evil evil thing.

I did add my profile to the Ballantyne BNI website though -- that is cool...ish (not 3 hours cool, but still good). Check it out.


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

If I wait to come out of the fog...

If I wait to come out of the fog, it just might not happen. Much blogging and organizing has taken place over the last few days, unfortunately, it is hard to tell from the outside looking in and none of it was done here and for my own personal gain. However, as the aforementioned was billable, I can't complain.

I had a lovely meeting today with the ever-outstanding and dashing gentleman, Rich Ferretti. I am a blogging maniac when it comes to real estate in Charlotte, and this is all Rich's fault. He may just be the only busy realtor out there right now, but he is doing something right, and keeping me busy to boot (see Rich's latest blog). He is such an incredible and wise man -- and I look forward to his take on the importance of attendance at BNI tomorrow.... and you better believe I don't dare miss that one :)

Company in this week, followed by a birthday party, Thanksgiving, a trip to Denver, Christmas and a trip to Florida. After that I actually think Mexico is on the agenda, although formal plans have yet to be made. Luckily business blogging is a go-anywhere kind of business and so I continue to blog, blog, blog (could they not have thought of a more elegant name for this?)
There will be more later although I can't guarantee if that means in the short term or not. I have neglected this personal blog as a time management necessity to write the rest. (See "billable" above), but will endeavour to update as a matter of course.

until later...


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Auer Agency

PRESS RELEASE
October 18, 2008

Meghan Wier, Writing for the Web is pleased to announce an new media partnership with Auer Agency, Sports Marketing and Design located in Charlotte, NC.

Auer Agency delivers graphic design, marketing / advertising solutions and custom apparel design services. Primarily a sports marketing company, the Auer Agency can do everything from designing a jersey for your cycling team, a brochure promoting your sporting event or a logo for a new product or service, Auer Agency can help you realize the possibilities.


Meghan Wier
Author -- Writer -- Web Consultant

Monday, October 27, 2008

News

A couple quick notes -- in an effort to make Confessions of an Introvert an absolutely FABULOUS book, the publisher has made the decision to move the release date back to Feb 2009. (Polishing and perfection take time people...)

I am admittedly disappointed that the release date won't be until next year... but I also understand. And hopefully the extra time will make the book a huge success.

Also on the subject of books: Wendy Gelberg has just published her book: The Successful Introvert, and despite not being able to get my book out before the x-mas holiday... Wendy was generous enough to consider me successful enough to quote throughout. Congrats to Wendy and I hope that you all get the chance to buy Wendy's book. It will make a great stocking stuffer!

-Meg

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Thursday, October 23, 2008

New Website!

I am very excited to announce the launch of my newly designed and super snazzy website. This piece of art and technology married together in perfect harmony is credited to the genius of Fred Sexton of Charlotte Web Design company Mouse and Man.... shear genius I tell you.


Please check out meghanwier.com and send me your feedback. - Meg


Meghan Wier
Author -- Writer -- Web Consultant

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Cycles: Staying busy, Catching up

It seems I always write about catching up, or being busy. It seems I am on that pattern: catch up, then get so busy I get behind, then catch up again. I suppose it is not a bad place to be. "Busy" indicates there is stuff to do. "Catching up" indicates being busy with things to do. I am sure that there was a time which I was bored, but I can't remember when that was. I can't remember a lot of things since I have been so busy.

I have a short list of accomplishments for the week. I got the car cleaned. I spent time with family, nuclear and extended. I wrote for several clients if not for myself. I booked a flight to Boulder in December where I were certainly not be able to catch up on any work, but I will most definitely be busy.

It seems that it is becoming necessary to admit that I am expecting. Expecting and expecting to be busy. I have become increasing busy with consuming food and as I write this I am eating my 10pm yogurt and big old bowl of fried potato snack. As you can guess this is what is making it necessary to point out that which is becoming obvious by my ballooning bump. On the up side the motherhood-induced insomnia was very lucrative last time in the form of increased productivity, (decreased quality of work, but increased amount of work accomplished...) <>

Speaking of which...

I am looking forward to my upcoming book launch - currently scheduled for December 1. I am anxious and eager to see this happen.

I have had the pleasure of working with the very talented Camine Pappas who owns C and Company - a business devoted to marketing home builders. I have been reading her blog and am most impressed. If only all the builders around the world listened to her, the world would be a better place -- and we would all live in awesome homes with meditation rooms and natural sunlight.

It seems that it is time to turn in for the evening. I have updated my Facebook about 10 times today and uploaded my contact database to Plaxo. I am getting caught up and procrastinating at the same time and since I am no longer staying busy with billable work -- I best get caught up with my sleep.



Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Monday, October 13, 2008

The Rule of Threes

(Content borrowed from the useful, if not always entirely accurate Wikipedia)

The rule of three is a principle in English writing that suggests that things that come in threes are inherently funnier, (Should be!!) more satisfying, (definitely!) or more effective than other numbers of things...There were three musketeers, three little pigs, three billy goats Gruff, Goldilocks and the three bears, and Three Stooges.

A series of three is often used to create a progression in which the tension (I see a lot of that!) is created, then built up, and finally released.

Should be an awesome family vacation next summer as our family grows and grows and grows!


  • Three is the first odd prime number and the second smallest prime.
  • Three is both the first Fermat prime (22n + 1) and the first Mersenne prime (22 − 1), as well as the first lucky prime.
  • Three is the second Sophie Germain prime, the second Mersenne prime exponent, the second factorial prime (2! + 1), the second Lucas prime, the second Stern prime.
  • Three is the first unique prime due to the properties of its reciprocal.
  • Three is the aliquot sum of one number, the square number 4 and is the base of the 3-aliquot tree.
  • Three is the third Heegner number.
  • Three is the second triangular number and it is the only prime triangular number.
  • Three is the only prime which is one less than a perfect square. Any other number which is n2 − 1 for some integer n is not prime, since it is (n − 1)(n + 1). This is true for 3 as well, but in its case one of the factors is 1.
  • Three non-collinear points determine a plane and a circle.
  • Three is the fourth Fibonacci number and the third that is unique.
  • In the Perrin sequence, 3 is both the zeroth and third Perrin numbers.
  • Three is the fourth open meandric number.
  • Vulgar fractions with 3 in the denominator have a single digit repeating sequences in their decimal expansions, (.000..., .333..., .666...)
  • A natural number is divisible by three if the sum of its digits in base 10 is divisible by 3. For example, the number 21 is divisible by three (3 times 7) and the sum of its digits is 2 + 1 = 3. Because of this, the reverse of any number that is divisible by three (or indeed, any permutation of its digits) is also divisible by three. For instance, 1368 and its reverse 8631 are both divisible by three (and so are 1386, 3168, 3186, 3618, etc..).
  • A triangle is the most durable shape possible, the only "perfect" figure which if all endpoints have hinges will never change its shape unless the sides themselves are bent.
  • 3 is the only integer between e and π.
  • Three of the five regular polyhedra have triangular faces — the tetrahedron, the octahedron, and the icosahedron.
  • Three of the five regular polyhedra have vertices where three faces meet — the tetrahedron, the hexahedron (cube), and the dodecahedron.
  • Three different types of polygons comprise the faces of the five regular polyhedra — the triangle, the quadrilateral, and the pentagon.
  • There are only three distinct 4×4 panmagic squares.
  • Only three tetrahedral numbers are also perfect squares.

THREE.

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Monday, October 06, 2008

The Wells Fargo Wagon is a Coming Now...(?)

Stupid stupid musical theatre classes. I can't get this one out of my head. If you are living here in Charlotte this week... you know what I am talking about. If not... no worries, you need not stress about it--just enjoy the catchy tune and the interesting interpretation by what is clearly a bunch of theatre and film students with too much time on their hands.

Back to the point:

Is our money safe?

Will my friends have jobs?

Will the economy ever recover?

Here in Charlotte, we have been fairly insulated from the ups and downs of the housing market fall-out. That was until the mortgage crisis started closing banks. Charlotte has a disproportional number of people employed by banks. And while that has been good until now, I think that the next few months will be interesting. Feels a little like when Kodak started letting people go in Rochester.

All the more reason to be a professional blogger!

I have been working with Charlotte Smith on launching her new blog about dealing with weight and weight loss issues. Needless to say I am considering what I eat more and more these days. Charlotte is a life coach with a practical approach to helping people deal with emotional eating and life-long weight problems. She is, no doubt, a genius in her ability to get people to fully understand their food addictions and build healthy relationships with food.

Just the thought of that makes me crave potato chips and that yummy bacon dip sitting in my fridge. ---Lucky for me Charlotte would have no issue with that. She would just say "are you hungry?" and ask how I feel after eating that delicious snack. Of course I will probably feel bloated and icky and then just thinking about all that will be enough for me to make a nice salad for dinner instead. Bummer. Being a professional blogger has its pros: i.e. not being significantly affected by bank buy-outs and take-overs, and its cons: obsessing over radon mitigation, tooth enamel and wondering if I am really "hungry."

Other than that it was a absolutely BEAUTIFUL day in Charlotte with temps in the 80's and the sun filling the enormous Carolina sky. Can't beat that for October. Life is good.

(glad all my money in the stock market was gone during the last big drop.... none to lose, none to lose.)

-Meg
Working Working Working
www.meghanwier.com


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

...Come again another day

It seems I am suffering from poor planning. I stayed up late, got the bicycle down from the garage storage, pumped up the tires, carefully put the bike in the car, and collected the accouterment necessary for taking a nice ride.

The plan, such that it was, was to take my kid to school, park the car and then bicycle to my meetings this morning. It seemed reasonable: get exercise, save gas.

And yet mother nature had different plans. While I was more than willing to ride in the light sprinkle that greeted me as I pulled the car from the driveway this morning, I am rather adverse, and hardly dressed from cycling in a torrential downpour.

..and so the bike sits. As do I, in the car. Fortunately, my handy dandy laptop is here, and I have plenty of writing to do this morning, however, it seems that I will have to buy gasoline and go to the gym today… two things that I had not planned upon, but seem, rather necessary.

Things to report include a full schedule for the week, a new website nearly launched, a naughty dog, a kid who grew two inches over the weekend, a fortunate forgiveness of the bank for a minor miscalculation, a ridiculous price for gas, an abysmal stock market, and a rainy day.

Cheers.
m

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Will someone please link to this page?
:)
Please note new release date of December 1, for Confessions of an Introvert
http://www.amazon.com/Confessions-Introvert-Career-Networking-Getting/dp/157248697X/ref=pd_bbs_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1221099875&sr=8-2

Also... please become a follower (see margin at right)...I promise not to serve any kool-aid.

-m



Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

On a Muggy Wednesday...

I find myself with a perfectly good laptop, 10 minutes… and no internet access!! Sitting here in the muggy Charlotte September afternoon at the Baxter Starbucks, I seem unable to connect to Wifi. This is likely due to a lapse in re-loading my Starbucks gift card or something, however, the end result is that I am unable to procrastinate OR work. So as a compromise, I decided to catch you up on my comings and goings in word-doc format, to be posted on my blog as soon as I am re-hooked into the matrix, (or in reality, late at night before I turn off the computer for the night).

It has been a busy couple weeks. It has in fact been busy for as long as I can remember, but the last few weeks stand out just because of the amount of work and traveling I have been doing. Some of my very eager networking contacts have taken it upon themselves to introduce me with everyone they know. Consequently, I have had several meetings, virtual and the old fashioned way, and have acquired several new clients. This is good. However, now I need to WORK. Too bad I have no internet access with which to do that. Best laid plans…

The last couple weeks have included visits to Tampa FL and Lexington KY, and I fly off to Madison WI this Friday. Luckily airports are wonderfully inspirational places to write—and they often offer a level of wifi more conducive to my current accelerated need.

BNI tomorrow morning in Ballantyne: a good thing. Even better, I won’t have to immediately get in the car and drive 9 hours afterwards as I have done the last couple weeks. I will however have to work, and pack, but that is all doable, at least in theory.

My darling son, inspired by a recent trip to the Kentucky Horse Park has chosen a “horse” theme for his birthday. In all honestly, “Sponge Bob” was his first choice, but since I put the mommy-veto on that (what would the neighbor mommies think!?) I now have to come up with a pony to ride…. Yippee. Anyone know where I can rent a pony? So the next month or so I will be collecting cowboy memorabilia, and cheap horse-themed party favors. I would like to find some nice local horse barn (clean??) with a set-up conducive to kid’s parties, have the kids come, pet some horses, learn about how to put a saddle on, or brush a horse, take 3 turns around a circle on some old pony, eat some cake and then go home…seems reasonable right? (ug…I so could throw the best Sponge Bob party… too bad it is politically incorrect amongst the preschool parents).

A casual observation: it seems to be white-striped button-down shirt day at Starbucks… I am rather out-of-place in my green floral dress…. Hmmm. At least I am cool like them and have my laptop…

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

inhale. exhale.

Thank God the Olympics are over. I feel like the last two weeks were stolen from me. I did not sit outside as much as I would have liked, I did not pay my bills early, I did not return emails, I did not, I did not, I did not...

Thank God the Olympics are over.

Today, I sent in the most recent edits for my book and caught up on my invoicing and bill paying. I write a couple blog entries for clients and packed for a trip to Florida. I went to the library and got some new books and I got the car alignment done at the dealer. The dishes are clean, the house is picked up and I am exhausted. But I got all that done and that is what I should have been doing the last two weeks while I watched the gut wrenching losses and glorious wins, the pride in country, hard work, sacrifice. I got caught up in the human interest sob stories and got sucked in by the 24 hour a day 12 station Olympic coverage. Thankfully, the only thing happening this week on TV is the Democratic Convention, and NPR and CNN.com will catch me up on the salient points in the mornings.

I need my routine too much.

Long distance travel this week to Tampa followed by the September "get back to school" mentality -- looking forward to getting business done and life following a mundane cadence again.

(does it ever do that?)


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Sunday, August 24, 2008

End of August: Meg Update of Sorts....

It is a beautiful crisp morning here in Indian Land, SC. and I am fortunate to have a few minutes to myself before the chaos of the day begins.

It have been a very busy few weeks and I would like to have more to show for it. School starts for my biggest distraction in a week and a half, and I am happy about that. He and I both are more than ready.

My book edits are coming along. I would like to say that they will be ready to send into the publisher tomorrow morning, but it would take an extreme amount of self-discipline and ability to ignore all other responsibilities today to make that happen. I will devote a couple hours to it this morning and a few this evening and hope that the rest can be tidied up tomorrow and Tuesday.

The end of this week holds a trip to Tampa Bay, FL, which seemingly and amazingly avoided the storm Fay, however, I will be driving through what will probably be quite a bit of soggy parts of the peninsula state. That should prove to be an interesting trip, but certainly one worth completing before the school year starts.

Speaking of school, my good friend Ms. Murray is jumping in head first into a huge undertaking with the start of a new school. The school called "The Carpenter's Workshop" is located in Baxter Village, near Tega Cay and the village of Fort Mill SC, and will be just a kindergarten this year, but expand to 4th grade as the incoming children advance over the next 5 years. It is quite amazing when you think about it. People rarely start their own schools and I wish them the very best of luck. The curriculum is very hand-on and religiously based, with small classroom sizes (10 max I believe). This is a great opportunity for parents who want a private school experience for their child, but at an affordable price. I suppose it is a good alternative to homeschooling, since the teachers are so strongly committed to the success of each individual child, and welcome parent volunteers to assist in bringing each child what they need. If you are interested, click the link above and tell them "Meg sent you" -- I know they have 2-3 kindergarten positions open for the 08-09 school year and they will take kids who are 5 or turn 5 before December 31st--so it is not too late!

Other than that, my BNI group has been wonderful. The masterful Fred Sexton of Mouse and Man is working his magic on my new website design, and the distinguished Kevin Carslisle of Perfect Image has already provided me with many beautiful new business cards. I am very please with this work, and hope to bring referrals in the future. The group is full of geniuses and I am humbled that they accepted my application. Apparently there are few professional blog writers in the area with whom to compete for networking group seats....

Many other interesting things going on, but I promised myself to focus on my edits while I can this morning, so I best be getting to that. Happy almost Labor Day...

Meg


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Introverted Socializing--in Charlotte

I have been swamped with work, inundated with company, and generally dealing with "stuff" and once again my blog has suffered. In the lull, I got this nice comment which I reposted here:

Hi Meghan. I am an introvert and so is my boyfriend. We would like to
meet other people, but we get overwhelmed by extroverts. We live in Charlotte, too!, and I wondered if you knew any good places to meet like minded souls? --
Thanks!Rebecca


I thought I would write out my answer in this regular section--answers to comments are sometimes lost in the shuffle, and also I think this is a great one, from which others may benefit.

Rebecca wants to meet other people but, like so many introvert... those extroverted people can be overwhelming. So how do you meet new people? Especially in a place like Charlotte, where so many people a "newcomers."

The answer to where, depends a lot on your lifestyle. If you are single or even married but young and child-less you can usually grab a friend, (or not) and go to a coffee shop and maybe strike up a conversation with someone in line. This sometimes works, sometimes not--but at least there is no strange discomfort because either they leave or sit alone--and it is just coffee - so it is not a big deal. And... there are always new people coming in!

Along the same lines, I know that sometimes groups will meet in the evenings at bookstores for a "game night." People bring old board or card games (Monopoly, UNO, scrabble, chess, etc.) and sit in their little "cafes" or side tables. I am not sure if there is a group here that meets regularly or not - but I always loves this idea. Usually they meet on a Friday or Saturday night--when the outgoing types were out drinking and listening to loud music all squished together on a dance floor. The introverts I know felt like they got to "go out" but they also met new people in a relaxed, laid back place. If there isn't a group like this already - I recommend starting one. I will even see if I can host something like this when I do book signings starting in Oct/Nov.

My next idea is Craigslist. There is a section for "platonic" relationships and I have looked at this a few times. Now, a word of warning: like all "online meeting" be careful. There are definitely people who will misrepresent themselves. But I met one of my very good friends here in Charlotte on Craigslist.

Another great place to meet other introverts is in your neighborhood. Now here it helps to have an extroverted kid on this one--I have to admit. My 4-year-old on a recent walk, took it upon himself to introduce us to a family up the street who where playing. They have two boys near his age and instantly we had commonality...the primary building block for relationship. Now we get together regularly. If you don't have an introverted pre-schooler on hand--I find that an annoyingly extroverted best friend is helpful. They usually make a point of meeting your neighbors before you do, and as long as you aren't overly freaked out--you might as well take advantage of the opening.

If you are a small business owner, or in sales, I recommend a group like BNI. There are groups all over the country, and the agenda lends itself to an introvert's comfort level while exposing them to several new people. The benefits are two-fold since this group is designed to help your business grow, but it also allows you to make many great contacts...and friends.

Other than that, I will sometimes use the "buddy method"--increasing my circle by inviting someone I know to invite a friend over for drinks, or dessert. Sometimes we meet out as well - again at a coffee shop, or a Panera Bread. Easy and casual is the way to go on this.

One last suggestion, especially if you have kids, is to go to Blakeney on Friday and Saturday nights in the summer. They have a free "concert" of sorts with local musicians. The place is always packed, but since it is outside, it isn't overly uncomfortable. This is a good place to bring the kids since you can let them play on the playground or run around in the open grass area. The restaurants there serve wine and beer, you can grab ice cream, or Starbucks. The perfect place to meet people, or hang out with new friends. I know a bunch of plaza's in town do this, but Blakeney is the only one I know of with a little park too.

Those are just a few ideas I have for meeting people for introverts--but the best advice I can give is to keep at it. As adults it gets more difficult to connect and become friends, but the rewards are so worth it. Friendships are profoundly fulfilling--and I wish you all the best of luck.

-Meg

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Ballantyne BNI

I have been bad about blogging this week. I had a personal tragedy of sorts and while I thought I was ok, it seems that I have falling into a bit of a depression...

funk...blue streak...despair...gloominess...melancholy

Good news is I am coming out of it, and while I haven't been one for blogging, I have been writing. Somehow melancholy and angst are good for creativity. I also made it to the library this week so I have lots to read as well--which for some reason also sparks creativity. I picked up a book about personal finance, as well as one on the real estate business. Granted, neither are really my book subject matter, they are on topics I have some interest.

Gotta love the library.

-also updated my profile page on the BNI Connection Website. Check that out.


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Thursday, July 17, 2008

I am a Charlottean...

I have lived in Charlotte now a year and a half. And while many have called Charlotte home for longer, I know few who have called it home their whole lives. In fact, Charlotte is a city of newcomers.

...But now I am official, and here is how I know:

1) I drove through the city this week to get to a meeting. I had another meeting on the other side of town. I had been to neither of these places before..and yet... I was able to drive to my meetings, without to aid of a map or GPS, or navigator, and arrive on time, and move to the next appointments with speed, efficiency and having never considered myself "lost." Something rare for me to this point.
---it is like I live here!

2) I walked into two different places this week, where someone I knew was there--and they recognized me--and we didn't pre-arrange the meeting. We were just there at the same time! Meaning, I know enough people to "run into them." Very cool.

3) I finally broke down and got a local phone number! Now, in the interest of full disclosure, my number is technically a South Carolina number. Because technically I live in SC. However, from my house, I can literally see the state border, so I feel that I can accurately call Charlotte home... even if it is really only a close neighbor. But to me, it is close enough.

I am so happy to call Charlotte home now. The weather is lovely, the people are friendly, the economy is strong and this is a positive optimistic place. I feel in so many ways that Charlotte has always been for me, even if I didn't know it. And now I am official.


---on unrelated/related business--- I am looking forward to working with Fred from Mouse and Man on a website face-lift. Fred Sexton is a member of my new Ballantyne BNI group and I am most impressed with his level of expertise and business sense. So look for my new look soon.

Fred will also be working on Matrelaw.com - a website for Charlotte area real estate attorney Gail Matre & Attorneys. This site will highlight Matre Law's firm and their strong commitment to affordable, high-quality real estate legal assistance. Matre Law is located in Mint Hill, North Carolina, but, like me, do business in both North and South Carolina. I am excited about this new Charlotte site, because it really will celebrate all that is right with Matre Law -- not your average attorneys, that is sure--something I can personally attest to. Congratulations to Matre Law, for your partnership with Fred from Mouse and Man, and I look forward to seeing that awesome site.

I am blogging a lot these days about Charlotte, the Charlotte economy and real estate. It is very educational, and I do enjoy learning from the pros at Southern Winds--they really know their business, and let me tell you... no one has told them that we are in a market slow-down! They are working like gang-busters, selling homes in Charlotte and the surrounding area. Those guys have Charlotte's real estate market moving.

Just another reason to be glad I am a Charlottean. Everything is alive...

Happy Thursday to all. Don't forget to comment!




Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Friday, July 11, 2008

Investing, saving, being frugal and living lavishly

I have been thing a lot lately about investing. I am not flush with cash, and while I make a modest living doing website content and web consulting, I would not be adverse to having more cash on hand. It seems every day that it costs a little more to live: Gas cost me $65 today to fill my tank and I seem to be going through more than 1 tank per week. The stock market is abysmal. My cell phone bill is ridiculous. I bought $100 worth of groceries today and enjoyed a lovely pedicure--at no small cost. (My toes look lovely...) That said, the mortgage is at a fixed rate, there is some equity, even if the home value has slipped and the cars are paid off. We have no college loan debt any more, nor any credit cards that aren't paid off monthly. I saw a show yesterday that had couples interviewed who were saying they had $200,000 in credit card debt! And that was before the house with the ARM, the cars, the private school tuition for Junior, the 2x a day Starbucks habit. Each story got worse. Bad choices, no investments, lifestyles they could not afford.

And I could only think of two things: "What are these people thinking?" and "How can I make sure this doesn't happen to me?"

Even with a little cash in the bank, and many many years until an official retirement, a strong financial future is not guaranteed. Not for me, and not for many people. Investing now, while there is essentially a "sale" on making money is smart. But making a smart investment is not always easy. The "old way" may not work, the "new ways" may be too new. So many want to rely on schemes and procrastination. Think about all the people put money into property in California, and Florida. They thought they were making a smart decision and now sitting on a house that is valued less than they paid for it 5, 10 years ago. 401ks are based on diversified investments--in the stock market--which I don't have to tell you is down.


Now that is all a lot of my own personal information, but it sets up my experience and tells you were I am at. I have been investing in Prosper now for about a year an a have and to date have 58 loans funded. Now, I am not one to talk about money in any great detail on the average day, but I did want to share with you my prosper story. Those 58 loans represent 58 people whom I am helping get out of a bad credit situation. These people are consolidating credit cards, or paying off other high interest loans--or getting through other financial tough spots. For each of these loans there was background info, the person's story, credit history, credit score, expenses, etc. And I choose my loans carefully. There is a high default rate, especially now, and I am fortunate to have all my payments from these people current. Admittedly, on occasion there is a late payment--but so far, everyone is hanging in there.

Now Prosper isn't for everyone wanting to make an investment. It is risky. But so is the stock market. Right now Prosper is paying an average 17% for me, which I consider rather decent. Right now Prosper is a good investment. A smart investment. I re-invest the money each time I am paid back+interest, enough to fund another loan. It will be a long time until I take the money out of this (loans are for 3 years), and with each re-investment I push that back again.

But I don't need the cash today. Today I will ride my bike, clip my coupons, go without. Today I will splurge on a pedicure, but I will sacrifice something else. Because I need to look to tomorrow. I do not want to be one of those people talking to Suze Orman about how I screwed up and paid my 15% interest rate credit card with a cash advance with a 30% interest rate, and can't pay my electric bill. I do not want to look at this period of "economic slowdown" as the "time I lost all my money."

I am investing in my future - $50 at a time...

If you are interested is learning more about my Prosper story - how I choose my loans, or my investment strategy, I would be happy to discuss it here. Feel free to comment below or email me directly.

Meghan Wier
Writer - Author - Woman - Investor.




Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Good Morning Charlotte

The mornings don't seem to have started right anymore unless I get to enjoy a few minutes outside sipping my tea and going through my email. This is such a silly guilty pleasure--making a quick breakfast for my son and then slipping outside to the patio while he eats and watches 30 minutes of mind-numbing, but gloriously distracticting morning programming.

I find that I am developing new habits. Good ones. Like waking up early to spend this time breathing in the cool morning air and listening to the birds sing to eachother.

The hustle and bustle of the day--the doctor's appointments, impersonation of a taxi, important phone calls, and meetings will all begin soon enough, but for now I have found a little piece of spiriuality, or meditation, or just peace and quiet--and it is wonderful.

Today I meet with a guy who works for a company who sends out mass text messages... sort-of the new flavor of spam. And I am sure he would not appreciate that description, because in reality there are many useful applications for quickly and inexpensively letting people know what tonight's dinner specials are, or how many tickets are left for the game, or which American Idol to vote for. Apres the meeting I am sure I will have a new-found appreciation for all that texting can do and likely try to convince all of you of the same. Maybe even texting you messages such as "buy Meg's book" or "Are you an Introvert? Find out today at www......." But all the same, I may just send you an old fashioned and way-more personal email. Kids these days I tell you, with their fancy technology. Doesn't anyone believe in email anymore?

On another note I may wander off to the bookstore and buy a copy of 4-Hour Work Week - since I think it was actually written about me. But I will find out and report back after a thorough read. Perhaps he doesn't mean "billed hours" (as I certainly work many more) and probably doesn't count parental responsibilities into "work" which we all know would be incorrect... however, I am fortunate to be able to enjoy a truncated, semi-retirement, situation as an author and writer, (and I may have to add "blogger" since blogging seems not to be considered "writing" in some circles, and if one where to read this entry as a sample, I could see their point).

Oh dear, I am rambling again. Tea is gone. 7:30 is here. It is time to get the taxi packed and the day started.

Good Morning Charlotte.
Meghan Wier


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Sunday, July 06, 2008

fog

The day started out cool and lovely, after another night of thick, uncompromising, and wholly unnecessary despair. I sat outside and drank my morning cup of hot tea and listened to the ramblings of weekend news radio. I even worked on my freelance writing invoices in between surfing the Web and reading up on the real news and the un-real as well. The weather turned from perfect to a heavy rain storm sometime after lunch and my lazy hazy day became even more glorious as I was unable to do any yard work in the downpour, so I enjoyed the men's tennis finals at Wimbledon. I am no fan of tennis, but it was a very engaging match and the perfect excuse for not doing the inside chores that called out for attention.

They have been ignored yet again. Perhaps tomorrow they will learn to sing a louder song or a more compelling tune...

I have been doing a lot of thinking lately. The 4-day weekend and my current inability to sleep for more than 20 minutes at a time, day or night, has made my mind an interesting place as of late. Thoughts of my paternal grandparents have monopolized my late evenings for a fortnight. I can speculate why, as family, holidays and good-byes weigh heavily on the mind of one who has spent so much time considering lineage, but it has been interesting to revisit these memories as I lay awake at night, so many years after they left this mortal coil.

My grandfather had a small basement workshop area, that was entered from the garage of his Upstate New York home. It was dark, cool and moist, and I remember the stairs and the smell and the feelings of being in that place. He had a neat and frugal organization, which struck me--and is an odd thing to recall, as I was less than ten, perhaps even younger. But yet I hold that in my consciousness. To have gone down there in that private sanctuary would have been a special thing, as it was rare, and so for me that memory is especially joyful.

The other memory invading my near-slumber is of Grandpa Bud's last hug and the well-wishes he gave as we left before moving briefly to Belgium. This too is a joyful memory despite the fact that it is my final one of my grandfather. He died a few months later while we were still away. But I will forever remember that hug, the wonderful words and the wave as we drove away. I wish that all people were able to have such great memories of the goodbye.

Not everyone gets to say goodbye. And my missed goodbyes are painful and raw. And for some reason these are the things infiltrating the dark of night and causing the daytime fog. Tonight I am hoping to banish these grey monsters and replace them with the little pink ones. The pink lovelies of hellos, and the warmth of a good night's sleep.

Perhaps tomorrow the fog will lift and my brain will again function, if but a bit, and I will be able to focus on the important things like life coaching, dental health, party planning and real estate.

...no wonder my brain is favoring the fog.

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Writing, Business Networking and Roller Coasters


Today was a day of making and cultivating business relationship and of unrelated family fun. The networking happened virtually with several connections made, introductions delivered and networking commenced. The family fun took place in between the latter, at Carowinds Amusement park, where members of my immediate and extended family gathered to enjoy the pleasure or near-barf-inducing and unnecessarily-wet thrill rides.

It was a good day.

...Tomorrow will be spent writing and in some sort of quiet fashion away from crowds, noise, and pavement that sticks in a way that beacons you to quickly change your train of thought and not overly analyze the reasons for the gooeyness.


--I would like to re-introduce you to Pete McGourty of Expect Success, whose new website has officially launched. Pete is a recognized expert in business consulting and life coaching in Charlotte. Congratulations Pete!










Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Friday, June 27, 2008

Friday

It has been a while since I felt like I really needed a weekend... but as I sit here this evening reflecting on the week--I am glad that tomorrow is Saturday, and I have no plans to go anywhere in particular. Sleeping-in sounds like a wonderful idea and I am looking forward to enjoying a sunny Charlotte afternoon with my feet in the kiddie pool.

Some exciting projects are coming down the proverbial funnel over the next few weeks and I am very excited about the prospects of working with some amazing new clients on their corporate blogs.

I have been working a fair amount this week on Charlotte-related SEO. The search engine optimization community in Charlotte is very good, and I am happy to have such competent competition in getting top placement for my clients--keeps things interesting! I am always happy to talk about SEO, and welcome your comments here or via email if you are clever enough to follow a couple links to get my contact info (putting it online just one more time makes things just WAY too easy and my spam filter is working over-time these days). In the last month, I have had the pleasure of talking to two different groups about how to better maximize their message through good SEO techniques. Good stuff. I love those smaller groups who are excited about using technology to take business to the next level (cliche terminology, I know, but I am only working on half my cylinders tonight--hence the need for the weekend).

Speaking of small groups -- or rather the dislike of large ones due to my introvertedness... (bad segway, sorry)... Sourcebooks has posted my book on their website. I will no doubt be soliciting reviews through the site as soon as the book is ready, so brace yourself for my burst of forced-extrovert-neediness but until then I request your links, your love and your wishes of luck. Oh and click on that link every now and then to see then updates.

On a personal note, we have my cousins in from Rochester, and my sister coming in for the 4th - so it will be a great holiday week filled with family, as it should be.


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Thursday, June 26, 2008

American Lifestyle and Living in Charlotte

Things here in Charlotte are going well--can't complain about near perfect weather and happy clients and new friends. This month has been packed full of work and travel and company, as well as plenty of ingnoring work while I travel and spend time with company.

I have a couple new picks for favorite sites:

The first in American Lifestyle - a company that sells products all over the world. American Lifestyle has a ton - and I mean literally thousands of products available. As someone who one lived oversees and would have killed for a root beer and a box of Cheerios, I can tell you this is one great business idea. Check them out.

The second is Charlotte Real Estate News - a new site for news on Charlotte's real estate market. I am really looking forward to seeing this site take shape. Set up like a blog, it will have the most up to day information, and links to agents. Charlotte is a dynamic market right now, and this is a great forum to share the knowledge from the experts.

Well - that is all for this evening, more later if I can get myself organized and back to blogging. Afterall, that is what I am telling my clients every day "blog at least once a week - it isn't hard, just get into the routine" -- better put my money where my mouth is on that one folks... g'nite.



Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Monday, May 19, 2008

Sales and the Art of Rapport - Somewhat random thoughts on being nice and how to get the deal

Rapport during the sales process is something that isn't talked about enough. It is a connection, a commonality, a trust. Rapport is necessary to make a sale, but it becomes important way before a person can approach another and ask then to buy something. Rapport building happens during networking--before the sales process, before quite possibly, your prospect even knows what you do.

A while ago I had the opportunity to attend a talk on sales training. The presenter stressed the importance of first building a rapport and then he dove right into what I would consider a pretty standard "sales" ideal where the salesperson is suppose to not give away anything, and "lead" the prospect to and through the sale...to not accept the "nos" or the hesitations.

I shutter at this kind of training because I find it so profoundly irritating when someone tries it on me. Yes, sales should start with building rapport, but part of sales is knowing that you have the right prospect. There is no use in selling something to someone who is unwilling or not ready to buy. If you do succeed in strong-arming them to sign, then you will ultimately end up with an unhappy client. If you don't, then you have wasted your time and theirs.

The best sales are made when the client comes to you--next best is a referral. Both of whom you need to build rapport with... but also you need to maintain that good relationship. You need to maintain that good relationship even after you may have disqualified them as a good client prospect.

Sales is not formulaic. While you may be able to come up with a clever step-by-step chart or catchy acronym, each sale will be different. It has to be...I am different, aren't you?

So what do you need to do to be a good salesperson? Go out, meet people. Join groups and organizations, and participate. Learn what you can about your community and the people in it. Network, be friendly if not friends. Don't fake it. Tell people what you do and ask good questions. Don't sell--explain. If you are able to decipher if they would be a good candidate for your product or service, ask them. If they aren't interested...move on. But don't lose the contact. You never know if they may be a good referral source or customer later on. Even more, you don't know when you may have the opportunity to be a good will ambassador and provide them with a

And lastly--don't be afraid to give something away for free. Many a business was built on samples. Weight loss programs make no secret of the fact that in order to lose weight you will have to eat better and exercise. We all know that. But then they provide the plan and the food... at a cost of course. Have you ever gone to the grocery store and taken a sample of some fresh fruit, cheese spread, or cake? And did you buy it? A lot of the time you do. And the stores do this because it works! So either give away the answer to a person's problem, but make it easier or less expensive for the prospective client to get it from you, or give away a sample...and make it so appealing, the prospect just can't say no to the big piece!

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Frazzled, frizzled, fried

Hello -- I am still tyring to catch my breath after having to move my entire life to a new laptop -- but in the process I have found a bunch of things that I should have done a long time ago -- making the length of time to complete the arduous task longer, but potentially increasing the quality of the work that I am doing.

--not bad realistically right?

So in lieu of a real entry today, I will refer you today to the one I wrote for my BNI group on one-to-one meetings.

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Monday, May 12, 2008

Monday Update

I had a wonderful Mother's day weekend and I am trying, still, to get my computer up and running after having my old laptop melt down. It is amazing to my how dependant I have become on a little machine.

I listened to a wonderful program today on NPR about new media and marketing -- I think I would like to write a bit about this--incorporating blogging and other online strategies in the near future.

It is Monday and so I need to go work on invoices so that I can say that I did something today -

Hello to all - and until later....

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Friday, May 09, 2008

Plug and Play

Oh my… there is a lot going on. I have gotten my new laptop (yeah!) - but there is no such thing as “plug and play” for my life. I have too many files, programs, favorites, email accounts and passwords – and as such, I still do not have all my email or all my files, or all my programs (and who knows what else) on this computer. But it is Friday, and even though it is bound to be a busy weekend with relatives in town, a graduation party and mother’s day… I should be able to squeeze in a few minutes to get my life slightly more on track. (Wishful thinking??)

I have been trying to work out more – and my body’s ever-increasing complaints are getting louder. But still it feels good to have pushed myself farther and done more, and I hope to add a long hike or bike ride to the mix this weekend as well. (Am I crazy?)

Summer here is Charlotte has definitely started, and I am enjoying a near 80 degree morning. I do so like the heat and sunshine. I think my optimism is directly related to how much sun I get, because I am pretty optimistic right now despite a long list of things that need to be done.

Things to report: I am now in charge of the Ballantyne BNI newsletter (how did that happen?) I am answering interview questions for another author writing on introversion, my thyroid medicine is now too high and I am no longer sleeping (again), I am going to Vegas in a month AND my house is trashed...

so same old same old....



Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

It's exhausting being me...

Mr. McGourty, my life coach, just called to check in... and while he didn't specifically ask how my morning papers went this morning -- it was implied, (and hence this entry!)

So it is 9am and I am just now getting started. And yes, I did check my email first (although I didn't reply to any!) But considering that I haven't done morning papers until the evening many days lately, I can't be too hard on myself, (right?)

The house preparation continues for my guests this week -- I am looking forward to that visit very much, (but having company is a lot of work).

Speaking of work, I have a new working title for the next book: It's exhausting being me! -- and that is because it is really exhausting to be an introvert sometimes, especially one that is so out-going in the way that mine is sometimes....So now I have about 50 working titles and very little text. Maybe I will just write a book about all the things I could have called the book...

--but that is ok, I am planning on going on a little "retreat" at the cottage in June to get into my writing groove, and we will see what happens from there. It isn't as if I haven't been writing--because I write all day, but actual content that is suitable for the book is still in the beginning stages, even after all this time, (ug).

It is funny. The first book I wrote I did not tell anyone about for a long time. Not until I was sure it was going to get done--and many people didn't know until it was published. But with this one, I have been talking about it literally for years. And I think that somehow in doing so I have kept myself from really getting it done. But like I said, I have dedicated time in June and I will make it happen. October is my goal, and every day it gets closer... so I have to get on it!

Well, it is time to go. I have the BNI event this evening at Solara (I have to figure out where that is!) and I have a couple other things to do around the house too. So I must sign off for the moment - I look forward to catching you all up on things later tomorrow.

-meg




Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Monday, April 21, 2008

Morning Paper's - Monday - "It's a Scene"

My painting came out great! It took several hours last night and was made even more interesting by the fact that I invited my 4-year-old to paint with me. As soon as I find the card reader for the camera, I will post the pictures of "during" and "after." It was actually pretty gloriously messy, and I am probably the only mommy on the planet who would let my kid play with acrylic paints... but he did great and I am really proud of what we painted. It is--of course pretty contemporary and abstract, but also a burst of color in my sitting room to inspire me to great writing (or, um... web surfing as the case may be). Nate named the painting "It's a Scene" which is probably more an accurate description of how we looked painting it - two wild, painted humans--he stripped to his underwear (it was permanent paint of course....) and me with my hair piled high, barefoot and possessed by my inner artist.

It was a phenomenal evening. I had forgotten about how I enjoy the creative obsession that I have for painting.

(oh and.... yes Pete.. I did sorta, maybe, just a bit start reading chapter 2 of the Artist's Way this weekend...)



Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Lazy Weekend

It has been a fairly lazy weekend with a lovely (expensive) trip to an Art Festival in Greenville, SC, and a nice day here at home. I am hoping to make it down to the art store a little while later and make a nice painting for my sitting room. I have been looking for the right thing and fact of the matter is -- I am just going to have to make it myself. The right thing is in my head-- not in anyone else's

That said I did buy some nice art yesterday at the festival including a crafted - photo piece by Rochester artist Scott Matyjasek. Ironic that I go to an art festival in South Carolina and by something from a guy that lives in Rochester, NY. But I guess that just goes to prove that Rochester really is home to some phenomenal artists.

At home we did some yard work and I sat outside for a bit and read--and now I am going to get into the Sunday afternoon catch up I always seem to do before I invoice my clients!

My best to all--get out and enjoy some lazy time yourself.

Meghan Wier
PS -- I have started another blog (I know you are all shocked...) for my BNI group in Ballantyne, please check that out as we get some more posts in there.

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Thursday, April 17, 2008

BNI about Blogging

Alrighty then... I had my BNI presentation and while I don't think I made a complete fool of myself - I also do not think that I actually got around to making my point!

Blogging for business is good. Blogging for business is beneficial to your company. Blogging can increase customer satisfaction, can drive traffic to your corporate site, can act as a sales tool, can market your business through testimonials, can assist in improving the perception of you and of your business... it can, it can, it can!

Luckily - I handed out a bunch of paperwork, and if anyone bothers to read it... it may help round out my message a bit.

Ug. 10 minutes is not enough to explain the benefits of business blogging.

But at least the Coffee and Bagels were good (thanks to James and Sammy at Sammy's Diner in Indian Land)!
-Meg


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Crazy Wednesday: Spoofing, Phishing, Virus Scans...oh my!

I have been spoofed.

Spoofing is an annoying trend in cyber-misbehavior whereby someone uses what looks like your email address to send emails to other people. They do this to get your contact info and other personal information (bank accounts, credit cards) and this is called "phishing."

Anyway, the email doesn't really come from you, and there are ways to track back an email to see where it came from, however, most people don't do that - and it just looks like you are spamming.

And right now I am embarrassingly - seemingly... sending naughty emails about Latina women...
ug.

Fortunately, it appears that I am virus and hacker-free, which means that my email list has not been compromised and "I" am not sending these icky emails to anyone I know. But all the same, I HATE the idea that anyone would associate me with ... something so distasteful. And we will just leave it at that.

Meghan Wier - who is running virus scans and backing up the computer today...












Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Full Day in Meg-land.

Today was one of those day where I did a lot--house stuff, personal stuff, friend stuff, family stuff. No real work stuff yet, but it still could happen... maybe. I seem like I have been trying to sit down and get work stuff done all day, and it it just not happening.

The one personal thing that I did not do was my morning papers/blog. I woke up early enough to do it, but instead used the time to do laundry and last night's dishes and vacuum. There is something therapeutic about that and so I can't be too hard on myself. It is sort-of like when you make your bed before you clean your room -- it just sets the tone. And you can't call your room clean without making the bed. So for me, I needed to deal with the physical clutter before I dealt w/ the mental stuff...And clearly there is a lot up there today!

So now the house is clean and I can blog (if that makes any sense...)

I need to polish up the BNI presentation on blogging for business tonight, but I am pretty happy about where I ended up with that.

Other work to do, including the book stuff is to catch up on my blogs. Some of that I can do tomorrow at a doctor's appt (gotta use that time in the waiting room for something) and between meetings.

But tonight I need to work on the couple local Charlotte blogs. I have a lot to get done, and I best be getting to it...but wait! Now I have to go give my kid a bath... ah, the best laid plans.

Perhaps I will make it back to the desk in a couple hours.

Perhaps.


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Monday, April 14, 2008

Networking and Motherhood

I have been meaning to write about my son's infatuation with business cards for a while now -- see the blog about networking and motherhood.


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Blogging (for Dummies)






Firstly, I need to say, "yes, I did borrow this pic from Amazon -- and thank you." ...I wouldn't want to get in trouble for not citing my source - also, if you are interested in the book (Blogging for Dummies by Brad Hill), and if I have correctly added the link, you should be able to click the image and go to Amazon and buy the book...from my good generous friends at Amazon... (see I am looking out for you guys!)



All that aside, I wanted to mention that I have spent a good part of the weekend thumbing through this book on blogging and I would like to say that the author Brad Hill is a pretty funny guy. I enjoyed the wit and humor--and generally I think that this book would be palatable and helpful to all. I hope the the door prize winner at BNI on Thursday will enjoy the book as well (and forgive me for looking through it myself before giving it away).



There were a couple things in the book that I did not know - or at least had not thought of--such as the "blogger's code" - to be honest, or always attempt honesty in the posts (with the exception of fiction writing) -- and that I believe I have always done.


Hm...I guess I need to take that back... there are times when I use a false name or composition of situations for blog entries, especially when writing an entry for a client. A lot of times my clients are asked the same question over and over, and we post the question and answer on the blog. There are situations where I will merge the two into one, and then answer it as if it were one originally. But I don't think anyone gets too bent out of shape about this... we would just be answering the same question twice and that would be boring and redundant. SO --- I have come clean, I don't know if there is someone better to confess to than the blogosphere. (Maybe Pete McGourty will know...) I digress--Other things to do as a blogger is to of course cite your source, link when possible instead of cutting and pasting big chunks of text and do not comment spam. All great advice. I do consider myself to be pretty "white hat" when it comes to such things. Blogging is such a new-old thing, with an ever changing landscape. But it all comes down to the kindergarten mantra " be nice to your friends." (which is obviously "borrowed" from famous "do unto others..." which is taken from so many sources, it is probably one of those things which is technically un-citable, given the concept's roots in everything from Greek Philosophy to the Baha'i Faith).


INHALE...


On a somewhat related note, I have remembered that my posts are still being syndicated on the Amazon profile page. This blog (I believe...) was taken off the Confessions of an Introvert page, so I didn't give it much thought... but it does still appear on the Meghan Wier profile page. So hello! Amazon people. Don't forget to check out the new Confessions of an Introvert book which will be re-released in October.... rest assured I will be blogging about that soon, and asking for your reviews and feedback! I may even ask for your thoughts on my next book, "untitled," (catchy huh! -- I probably won't call it "untitled" -- that is more of a working title)

ug - that was a bit of a ramble, wasn't it!



Well, the Blogging for Dummies book does say to keep blog entries short... so alas...





Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Charlotte Real Estate

Our new home in Charlotte, NCI am beginning to wish I had payed more attention in my economics classes...then I wouldn't have to spend so much time as an adult trying to catch up and figure out how to manage the money I have and the investments that I wish to make.

The house across the street from me is still for sale. There are several on my street that are available, all relatively new, but the one across the street in brand new - the last in the development to be built and ready for a good family to move in.

The Charlotte real estate market is strong - in fact growing when most are in serious decline, but that doesn't stop me from wishing someone will move in across the street. It is such a nice house, and it being empty is doing nothing for my biggest investment... my own house.

That said, I know that Charlotte's market is relatively strong and the house will sell. In all likelihood, the builder will offer a great deal to get someone in there, and the new owner will be really fortunate to have such a nice home at a good price.

Charlotte, NC and the surrounding area continues to offer a great quality of living at an affordable cost. While I was not aware of this when I chose to move to Charlotte a year and a half ago, Charlotte is a huge magnet for newcomers, and has maintained a strong economy, despite the recent downturn nationally. A recent report that I read said that there were over 2,009 residential sales during the month of March and that the average sales price was $233,648. -- and that is a good percentage of the average asking price of $245,237. However, given that the newcomers are moving from less economically healthy areas of the country, we are now seeing that the average time a home spent on the market has risen to 130 days....

So I guess with that statistic, that the house across the street may not sell for another month or so. And that I suppose is OK. I just would love to see someone fun with a couple kids in that house. Summer is Charlotte is great, and it would be wonderful to share that with another neighbor-family.

So...any of you out there thinking of moving to Charlotte? -- there is a great house across the street--and you will have WONDERFUL neighbors!



Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Blogging for Business

I am preparing a presentation this weekend for my BNI group in North Carolina. If you have any Blogging for Business questions, please comment or email me: meg@meghanwier.com.

THANKS -- Meg

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Friday, April 11, 2008

JUMP into Friday

I am amazed that it is Friday morning already. I am amazed that it is Friday, that I have no outside things/running around/errands to do, that I have the time to get work done and it is already 10 and I am just beginning my "morning papers" -- I believe that I know why Pete McGourty wanted me to write on paper... paper does not have the Internet, paper does not inform you that you have new email, and paper does not have any fun flashing boxes to click on. (Weeee fun flashing boxes....click, click, click)

---but paper makes my hand hurt. Paper does not have email. Paper does not have the Internet, the weather, the stock market, the news.

and so I type. I am such a rebel.

Much writing must be done today for JUMP, and I need to pump it up a bit (pun intended) so that we can get that site to rank well. The Jump concept is such a great one, with essentially a huge warehouse space transformed into a play center for kids, (and sanity-refresher for parents). The inflatables are huge and the kids have a wonderful time. As a mom, I am so thankful that these places exist...especially on the cold and wet days. I wish there was a JUMP near us here in Charlotte--heck, I wish they existed when I was 4!

Other things today include writing more about blogging. I may even blog about blogging-- if I can think of a fun way to do so. Reading a blog about blogging may get a little dry, so I will do my best to spice it up a bit if I can get there later this afternoon.

Much copy, copywriting, clever SEO, shameless self-promotion and blogging to come. Stay tuned.

-m

Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Blogging, Blog Writing, Business Blogging and BNI

I am the speaker next week at the Ballantyne Business Network BNI meeting and I am starting to put together my materials for the presentation.

My 10 minute talk will be on blogging for business--a topic that I am very familiar with, and one which I will enjoy sharing with the group.

However, this group of people is a new one for me, and I am nervous about it already. So I am making up for my lack of comfort with preparation--thinking about what I want to say and how I want to say it, a whole week early. Luckily, the topic is a passion, and speaking in public is always made easier when I know the subject matter as well.

That said, I have much preparation to do, and a week hardly seems like enough given all of the other responsibilities I have this week.

Pete McGourty, Charlotte-based life coach extraordinaire has asked me to write everyday as an exercise to pull out my thoughts and creativity, and to dump out that which is muddling my mind. I am remiss to say, that I have scrapped the paper method he prescribed and have taken up blogging instead. Call it a modern twist on good old-fashioned life coaching, (is there such a thing as "old fashioned life coaching"??) But alas, if you find my entries start to ramble more than usual--blame it on Pete. I am doing my homework...

All this blogging and soul-searching and web focus has made me want to really dig in and get my own sites and blogs in better shape. I should be making some changes over the next few months before the re-launch of Confessions of an Introvert to the blogs and site.

Well -- I need to go do laundry, clean up the kitchen, run the vacuum, get the mail, pay the bills, and take a pain killer for my back before I head out to my son's soccer practice.

Meg



Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Wednesday Already?


As I get ready to write this, I am finding that I actually have a lot I really need to do this morning--which throws out my plans for sitting around in my PJ's for the next couple hours and catching up on my blogging... which is what I was going to do... oh well, maybe another day.

The new cover for Confessions of an introvert is out... and pretty snappy. I am looking forward to having it out (again) so that I can share it with people--introverts, extroverts, etc.

I do get to drag out the book tomorrow -- I am substitute educational coordinator for the Ballantyne Business Network BNI meeting tomorrow and I will have to come up w/ something that I can "educate" the attendees with, although luckily I have a little bit of business material from which to pull.

I am suffering from a painful back injury, one which I have had for a long time, and one I made worse with a recent trip to the US National White Water Training Center. It was a fun and strenuous rafting trip, and I am paying for it now. This, I am afraid is sure sign that I am in fact getting older--older and out of shape, which is good enough reason to get back to the gym...as soon as my back is better again! (Add that to the list)

Have a lovely day all - I hope you enjoy a few rays of sun, and a to-do list slightly shorter than the one I am about to write.

-Meg



Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Are Introverts Weak?

I have spent the week with one of the most extroverted friends I have.

I have had a wonderful time with my very good friend, but after a week of being drawn into long conversations with multiple waitresses, tour guides, and strangers on the street... I am looking forward to a couple days of pulling that wall down in front of me and hiding behind my computer screen, in my quiet peaceful house.

All this got me to thinking that perhaps introverts are a little weak. Or at least perhaps we are perceived as weak. After all, why else would a human being need to nap/sit in a dark room after just going out and being with people?

I have needed this a lot this week.

My friends who know about my occasional aversion to profuse social interaction try to be empathetic--asking me over and over, "are you OK?" "Do you want to go take a walk?" "Do you want some alone time?" during our time out together.

In a way I appreciate their concern, they love me. But all the attention makes it worse! Please don't think of me as fragile. Please don't make a big deal about how I "feel." Please just let me be strong - capable--let me be the me I need to be when I am out with people. All this coddling makes me feel like you don't respect me, don't think I am able to function, or that you see me as "less" than you... In a way you are making me weak, or seem weak, to those around us.

I am quirky maybe- but I am not weak.

After giving it a lot of thought I came to this conclusion: introverts may need to take a "time out" from the hustle and bustle... maybe even a nap. And you can think of this as a fault if you would like. But the thing that makes an introvert "weak" is also the thing that makes us strong... We are able to "heal" ourselves. Being alone, or quiet, or less "outgoing"--or even just introspective, gives us back the energy that we lose, and the strength to move on. Extroverts by comparison have a harder time making themselves happier, calmer, more "together" -- they need other people to validate them, support them, bring them joy.

While we all need others to feel love and respect, introvert and extroverts manage social interactions differently. We in fact both have our strengths and weaknesses. I may be perceived as weaker because I need more time to myself, but because I get this... I am stronger!


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Business Blogging, Writing All Day, and Movies from the 90's

(for 200 Alex...)

I had a busy weekend, and surprisingly I did not take my usual Sunday nap. I am a firm believer in the theory that you can make up for not sleeping during the week, by sleeping on the weekends. I am sure there are actual doctors with fancy degrees who would tell you otherwise, but I am totally ok with thinking I can make up for my bad sleeping habits with a good nap every 6 or 7 days.

--except today.

Today I went to the gym, did breakfast with the family, signed up to go horse back riding at the Ann Springs Greenway, watched a few old movies (Bruce Willis marathon...) and wrote. And wrote. And wrote. In act, as you will note I am still writing... odd. Actually today I have been trying to get some of my past blogs updated with some good meaningful content. I have a ton of great stories to tell, and business networking advice to share and I needed to get that out to those of you who are hungry for it. Besides, blogging is good for business -- especially when you are a business blogger....

Well, I have neglected to do my morning papers today. Perhaps my excessive writing about writing will suffice for the day.

Busy week coming up with a lot of funfilled activities and networking. I am hoping that I can get some good writing in this week as well. My blogs are in a sorry state and I have to make sure that my clients don't go ignored while I am networking and horse-back riding!

- On that note, I always tell my business blogging clients not to ramble and I have come to that point where I started on a ramble and I am ending on one as well. -- So if you are looking for something a touch more coherent -- check out the Blogging for Business blog.






Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Book Cover, Easter, Weeds and other New Stuff

Easter: A time of renewal, whether you are religious or not. Spring is here, officially and otherwise and I am jumping into the Spring zone! My flowers are up and so are my weeds...

Speaking of jumping into Spring: I did some work for the Jump Parties site this past week - a super place to bounce, jump, climb, slide, play and PARTY in the Long Island, NY area. I am hoping that they are able to expand down this way to Charlotte. But, I definetly recommend checking that new Jump space out--I hear the Game Room Fun Zone is a remarkable place and the staff at Jump Parties is amazing. If you have a kid under the age of 10 -this is the place to plan the birthday party!

I have had a lovely weekend, although I can't say too much about what I have gotten done besides had a couple of Easter egg hunts and enjoyed the sunshine. Carolina weather this time of year is nice -- mild, and chilly in the mornings, but by 2 or three in the afternoon you can see a sunny 70--and for March, I have no complaints about that. Needless to say, I have been sitting and reading outside in the afternoons as much as time and offspring will allow. I need my vitamin D.
This is looking like it will be a busy week, although they seem to be getting busier and busier each week for some reason. Something about this time of year makes people more excited about getting projects done, myself included. I have been looking at my website and really thinking that I need to fix it up and clean it up ASAP -- my book (Confessions of an Introvert) is being published in October and as much as the spring jump to get this done is on, the Summer slumber will soon be here and I will be spending more of my days soaking up the Vitamin D and pulling weeds and less time tinkering with my site.
Speaking of my book: The new book cover has been uploaded to the Amazon site. I am REALLY looking forward to having the book in my hands and out to the public! YEAH!
Happy Easter everyone - and Happy Spring


Meghan Wier
Author Writer Web Consultant

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Charlotte, NC

Where am I? I get asked that all the time. It seems that no one is really sure where I live.

Specifically -- I live in Indian Land, near Fort Mill, in South Carolina, near Charlotte North Carolina. It is a place in between and sort-of and nearby. But it is a beautiful, thriving, growing place.

I have been trying to get all my friends to move here. I know it is not likely -- but I want to share with them the happiness I have had since I moved here. Now some of it is the location, and some of it is the "change of scenery" -- but this is a really special part of the world.

I am trying to put together a Charlotte Community information page on my site -- so I am soliciting ideas. Feel free to comment on great places and businesses in Charlotte (and vicinity) and let me know what you think!

-- on a personal note: it was a good day, albeit not as productive as yesterday, but then... how could it be!

Monday, March 17, 2008

productivity

It was a rather productive day and I have to say that it is great part to my new friend and success guru Pete McGourty and his suggestion to brain-dump first thing in the morning with three pages of whatever the heck (Pete would wish that I refrain from using the word "hell"...) is going on in there. Somehow spending 45 minutes blurting out my thoughts on paper is gaining me efficiency. That said, this forum is sort-of the same thing, only I don't have Mr. McGourty of Expect Success checking in on me to see if I "blogged." Although perhaps he will now...

Got the car checked, picked up dry cleaning, went to the gym, took walk in the sunshine, played with my kid, got the grocery shopping done, made more lists of things to do tomorrow-- (like move the appt on thurs and buy said kid his soccer gear for the practice which is... you guessed it: thursday).

I am happy to report that Team Events has launched their new site thanks to the artistry and programming mastery of the talented Carrie Greno. The site is for their new Jump - bounce play party extravaganza in Long Island NY. Check that out! If I am fortunate enough to get my self in gear tomorrow, I will see what I can do to add some text to that site so those of you interested in bounce parties in the NY Long Island area will be able to find it. Beautiful site - kudos to all there.

Today I am glad I don't have $ in the stock market. Well not true -- I am glad I don't have $ I need to take out right now in the stock market. Because I "had" money in the stock market....sigh.

The good people at the GoodYear did a quick diagnostic on my car and gently pointed out that I didn't tighted the gas cap enough - causing the engine light to go on... but I guess they took pity on me and the unimaginable amount of $4/gal gas that evaporated , that they let me go without charging me for the test. THANK YOU GOODYEAR OF FORT MILL. You undoubtedly will see my old car again (and again) over the next few years as I baby it long enough for the auto industry to come out with the perfect affordable electric/solar/wind powered car.

Thanks also to the Lowes Food in Ballantyne - and apologies to the lady behind me in line as I used all 20 coupons allowed and saved $58. I am cheap, and I am sorry that inconvenienced you. Actually I am not that cheap - I just like a good challenge and grocery shopping is a sport. You would not believe the shopper's high I have right now... and that is indication of a serious problem. Don't get me started on what I can do in a Target...

Some other things to note: 5 Star Home Improvement, is an awesome home Improvement, (and replacement window, siding and roofing) company in Rochester. They are my Rochester PICK OF THE WEEK. Go check out that site. As spring comes around the corner, it is important to have a quality and professional contractor to work with on those honey-do projects. I recommend Five Star - and tell Jason I sent you there!

Well, I best be going, because in two minutes I will have to start thinking about writing my morning papers, and I have a feeling I will not be nearly as productive tomorrow if I don't get some sleep.

Happy St Patricks Day -- and Happy Birthday to Jane

Monday, March 10, 2008

Sunny Spring

It has been quite nice and sunny here in Charlotte today. It was very nice.


I have been quite fortunate to have picked up several clients in the last few weeks and I am scrambling to get all of the work done well and on time, while nursing my bazillionth cold of the last few months.


My 1 year anniversary in Charlotte has come and gone, and I am very happy here. I have been trying to get some of my friends to come and buy homes in the Charlotte area but no takers yet. If they could see the pretty Spring we are having, they would be lining up.

Admittedly that is a lame excuse for an update, but I felt like I should write something for the 1 person who reads this once in a while (like you: James!)

- Hope all is well with you, and come for a visit. I am opening up Chez Wier for visitors!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Friended/Friend-Ed

Friended Friend-ed

So after much resisting, I finally joined/got sucked into the social network of Facebook. Initially designed for college kids to get to know their classmates, it has now gone global, allowing people of all ages and demographics.

As a person in the process of examining friendships, I find this whole concept very interesting. You seek out people from your past or present and connect online. I went and looked up people from my high school class to see if there were any signed up on Facebook and there were several --- including a guy who lived on my street, whom I saw nearly everyday much of my adolescence. I “friended” him, meaning I clicked on a link to add him to my friends list (criteria for “friendship” on these sites is pretty loose). Within a couple hours, this accepted my “friend request.” And then wrote me a message – it went something like this: “Hi – thank you for friending me. I forget—how do we know each other?”

Funny on so many levels:
1) He accepted the request
2) He then emailed me to ask if we knew each other
3) He used theword “friending”
4) We will probably now actually become friends because I friended him
5) I just used the word “friended”

This whole idea of collecting “friends” is an interesting one. In a way, this online social networking is a great thing connecting people who have lost touch, or for whom physical interaction is not possible. But the internet has created this strange world, where people throw around the word “friend,” making it lose meaning.

In some ways I really like this way of networking. It helps connect people. That is a great thing. But I can also see how these online sites can suck away the time that once could spend truly being with another human being. I am the last one who should preach about putting the laptop down, but I do recognize that this can be dangerous territory. We need to be able to physically share space, or at the very least talk to other people. There is too much lost without tone and inflection, or a look, a shrug, a sigh. Words cannot communicate full meaning alone.

That said, I have to go check my Facebook account and see if I have any new friends….

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Friends

In my exploration of friendships & relationships, I have thought a lot lately about how one begins, maintains, and even ends friendships.

Today an old friend asked me how my "friend-making" was going. I am in a new town (been here a year) and I have made a real effort to get out and meet people in the last few weeks. But still I had considered my attempts to have been unfruitful at worst and slow-going at best.

Then I told my old friend about the playgroup I had gone to, where I met three new moms, (and their 62 kids...ok it was like 10 kids...but it was still nuts), and the business networking meeting I had attended, where I met 30 new people, and how I had set 1-on-1's up for this coming week with several of them...and then about the new friend I visited this week with the brand new baby. Then I told her about going to breakfast with a couple we hadn't seen in a couple years who lived near out new home, and the old friend who was driving in from Chapel Hill today to hang out.

I guess I do have friends -- new and old (literally!) It is a great feeling to think of my new home here in Charlotte as home, and the new people in my life as friends. Friendships new, growing, evolving--it is a very fulfilling thing indeed!

Friday, February 15, 2008

What's Your Story?

What's Your Story?
Business networking is sometimes a difficult task. Or rather, the process of continually networking can be difficult. The reason? Our “bag of tricks” isn’t big enough. We hand our business card to someone, or send an email and we wait—and most of the time that is where the networking ends.

How unfortunate!

--and what a waste of time. It is important to remember that networking is a job. It is a fun and rewarding job too, if you do it well, but it is still work. You have to continue to perfect and add to your “bag of tricks” to keep those contacts close, and your circle growing.

One of the best ways to keep networking going is to have a story to tell. Toss that discomfort away, and sit down and think about who you are in business and why. Did you go to college for what you are doing now, or is it something that you fell into? Did you start your now successful business on $500 and a loan from your uncle? Did you get fed up with your job and just quit, without any idea of what you would do next? Think about what makes your story different, and why it is compelling enough for someone to work with you.

This should be a 3-5 minute synopsis (not an entire life story), and it should steer away from too much personal information. Keep your story light and funny, and practice! Write it down, making sure to include the important points and work to improve that story as you get people’s reactions. The delivery is almost as important as the content.

When you are told: “so tell us a little about yourself…” you will have a great story with which to impress people. Below is a quick outline to get your story started:

Give a timeline: “Six years ago I was working a desk job at the DMV…”
Share something funny: “I had told the 50th person in a row that they needed form 82A when it dawned on me…”
Tell about the turning point: “One day I woke up and finally decided to follow my passion…”
Tell what you have accomplished: Since starting the ranch, we have had 1200 kids come to camp…”
Tell why it is so important: “We have been able to give inner-city children a chance to experience life after cancer treatments—it makes me feel like I am really making a difference.”

Sharing your story will make you more personable and give you something to say during those times when you need to make a connection with a new contact. Give them something positive to remember about you, get your story ready today!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Jump start, re-boot, kick in the pants...

Some mornings I feel like I am just drudging through the day—meandering around, but not completing anything. There is a lot going on in my life these days, and I find that juggling just the daily “to-dos” is difficult. My “busy-level” is evidenced by how messy things have gotten: my purse is filled with crumpled dollar bills, receipts, mail, credit cards that never made it back to my wallet. Even my house is full of half-finished projects that need to get done—and my computer virtual “desktop” is filled with files that should have been properly filed.

But I have a sure-fire way to get myself back on track in these situations, (and I should, it has happened frequently enough!). The first thing I do is give myself a few minutes to write—like this. For me, thinking things through and writing, helps me steady my mind. Some people need to go take a walk, or go to the gym—I need to write. Even writing about the mundane, will jump-start my creativity and burst through my writer’s block.

And so today, I have already stopped by the post office, gone to the gym (it was a brief work-out---but something I can cross off the list, so it counts). And I have made my way to a sunny seat at a Starbucks. Now I just need to get the list done.

..and I am underway once again….easy as that!