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Host Garrison Keillor answers your questions about life, love, writing, authors, and of course, A Prairie Home Companion.

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How do I get noticed?

October 4, 2011 | 10 Comments

Dear GK:

I recently lost my job at a corporation and for the last 8 months have tried to re-invent myself. At the age of 44, I've gone back to my passion for writing. I was hoping to get noticed with my blog, but with so many blogs these days its like screaming to get noticed at the Super Bowl; feels like being just another fly on the wall. How do I get noticed? How do I get someone interested in what I have to say, write and do? It seems like you have a better chance at getting struck by lightning than getting noticed.

The Broke Boat Broker Blogger.

Adopt reverse strategy and fly under the radar while saying and doing extraordinary things. Be anonymous, self-effacing, invisible. Use a pseudonym. Refuse requests for interviews. Don't endorse products. Fight every attempt to bring you into the limelight. Unplug the phone. Withdraw from the world and the world may beat a path to your door and ---- here's the pay-off ---- you can then pretend to regard attention as a great burden and a nuisance, a privilege granted to but few.


Dear GK,
No one knows what the oboe is, as you can see by my video above, filmed in the cultural meca of NYC and in front of Lincoln Center, no less. I'm a one-woman crusader to get people to realize the oboe is NOT the bassoon....everyone thinks it's large, or they see a bassoon and call it the oboe.
I've played on the stages of Carnegie, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and in Broadway pits, but I want to bring my oboe playing to the general public. How can we get them to LISTEN?? (I hope you'll watch my is pretty funny.) Thank you Garrison. By the way, my Eastman friend harpist Min Kim plays with your wife in Minneapolis! All best, Keve Wilson

This was quite fun though surprising! As a child of the'50s in rural Calif., all elementary school orchestras had a woodwind section with several oboes. The classrooms were stuffed to overflowing with one teacher to 40-50 kids but the arts (and math and science) were held in high regard.
Yes, we need to take notice and listen closely.
Your work is beautiful Keve. Thank-you!

Add some scandal to your life - that's how! Yep, got that on The Prairie Home Companion! Am a faithful student.

Dear Mr. Keillor,

I have been a loyal fan of yours since the beginning of your show back in '74 when I wrote a letter to WILL radio in Champaign, Illinois, asking who you were (they didn't know!), and looking Lake Wobegon up on the map (I couldn't find it!) My question has to do with the recent News: it seems to have been shortened by about 5 minutes. Why so? Also, why was the News included in the first hour this past week?

Robert W. Emmaus

to The Broke Boat Broker Blogger:
The best way to get noticed is to do something that attracts attention. You need to stand out from the rest of us, and if that requires some radical action, then so be it. Good luck!

Just don't get arrested...unless you're doing something great for humanity or the planet.

To The Broke Boat Broker Blogger:
I feel terrible for you B^4 but you have entered a winner-take-all profession in writing. Some of us have spent literally decades on this task, have completed 11 novels only to see barely one published. Writing is no longer something you do to pay the bills--but to keep your soul out of hack. You need to love writing. That is the only way you will even get an "at bat". You will most likely strike out. Oh well. It's a life. Enjoy the ride and find something else to pay the bills.

Please accept our condolences on the sudden loss of Tom Keith. After listening to A Prairie Home Companion for all these years, it feels as though we've lost someone from our own family. If you would, please thank his family for sharing him with the rest of us. Just as people that Tom never met enjoyed his wonderful talents, people his family doesn't know are saddened by his passing.

Our hearts go out to all of you on the Prairie over the loss of Tom Keith. He was a friend through our radio and we are truly saddened and will miss him very much. Please give our heartfelt sympathy to his family.

I loved Tom Keith and his voices and his humor. For me, Tom brought back old time radio drama with the sound effects I've missed for decades. Rest in Peace.

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