It’s What’s on the Inside

As one begins any project involving an audience they start with research. The research builds and inspires the work, from the messaging all the way through to the design. In a strategic writing course, we have discussed how important it is to establish the call to action. In our Guth, Mark and Short text, Strategic Writing: Multimedia Writing for Public Relations, Advertising and More (2009), the authors give detail on strategic message planners. According to the text, “Only careful research can tell you which features can create benefits-and which benefit is so important that it belongs in your strategic message” (Guth, Marsh, Short, p.120).

The only way to figure out key benefits is to truly understand your target audience. Through doing your strategic planning you have identified who your ideal consumer is and their demographics (gender, location, family, stage in life, etc.). Next, and most importantly, you must identify some psychographics about them.

In an article written by a Claremont Graduate student called, Leaders and Heroes: Modern Day Archetypes (2013), we are introduced to Psychologist, Carl Jung. Jung and his study of psychographics and creation of archetypes. He found that archetypes are, “transmitted through culture rather than biology” (Faber & Mayer, 2009). People tend to identify with them because, “Archetypes can provide an operative paradigm or schema in which an individual can experience the world, be compelled to act, and provide a model for behavior” (Schadraconis 2013). All three of these things are the string with which us advertisers and marketers hope to tug on.



As we can see it is imperative that you understand and create an in-depth profile if you want to make ads that sell. It’s not enough to just reach your consumer on the right channel, but you need to compel them to buy. You need to understand their wants and desires, why they get out of bed each day.

 Just recently I finished Margret Mark and Carol Pearson book, The Hero and The Outlaw (2001). The book supports the research of Dr. Jung and goes into detail on each archetype. In summation, the book suggested the deeper your understanding of your target is, the more successful your advertising will become. Depending on what archetype you want your product or service to attract, you need to approach the advertising with how they want to be talked to.


Faber, M. A., & Mayer, J. D. (2009). Resonance to archetypes in media: There’s some accounting for taste. Journal of Research in Personality, 43(3), 307-322. doi: 10.1016/j.jrp.2008.11.003

Shadraconis, Sophon (2013) "Leaders and Heroes: Modern Day Archetypes," LUX: A Journal of Transdisciplinary Writing and Research from Claremont Graduate University: Vol. 3: Iss. 1, Article 15. Available at:

Mark, M., & Pearson, C. S. (2002). The hero and the outlaw: Harnessing the power of archetypes to create a winning brand. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Marsh, C., Guth, D., & Short, B. P. (2009). Strategic writing: Multimedia writing for public relations, advertising and more Guth, Bonnie Poovey Short. Boston, MA: Pearson/Allyn and Bacon.

Engaging your Reader

When writing for others it is important the material is engaging. As savvy young adults, we feel confident we can relate to our peers. We know how each other thinks, feels and reacts because duh…we are all going through the exact same stuff.

WRONG, no matter how confident we feel, there is no real way to prove it. There is no writer who relates to all audiences, but there can be insightful writers who know how to channel multiple points of view. These fine craftsmen are people who are observant listeners. They don’t back people into a corner with their own opinions, rather they settle in and dig a path to mediation.

It’s important to learn from observation because it opens our eyes to deeper thoughts, feelings, and information we might have missed before. Michael Burns writes in his Creative Writing 101: Show vs. Tell (2003) piece that, “telling merely catalogues actions and emotions, showing creates images in a reader’s imagination.” This essential piece of advice can make or break most creative authors.

Now, you could argue some people would prefer cold hard facts, get the main message and be done, a much more cut and dry form of communication. To me, the cut and dry information does not stick for nearly as long as the information that resonates emotionally.

I have found the best time to write is when you are in an emotional extreme. When I am sad I can hone in on all the explicit feelings and emotional I am experiencing. The same can be said for when I am happy, mad, or confused. It’s challenging to relate to a specific emotion if you have never taken a minute to explore your own.

Write mad.

Write sad.

Write happy.

Write when you are confused.

If you can catalogue your emotions, referring to them one day will quickly get you back in that state of mind.

Most of the articles I explored focused on how important show vs. tell is in fiction writing, but journalists need to be engaging as well. They have a job that depends heavily on readership.

In conclusion, I see how the art of showing rather than telling is one that takes time and effort. You first have to explore each scenario before properly writing about it. The imagery you can create after uncovering little details is what sells a reader on your credibility and hooks them into reading more.


Burns, Michael R. (2003) Creative Writing 101: Show vs. Tell. Colorado Spring Writers Group, page 1-6.


The Perfect Package

"In reality, there is no road to success that you just hang a right, then a left, and you are on your way. It is a path you have to lay on your own, brick by brick, and every step, even the first is going to determine that next. So package yourself for success."

Read More

Hope Floats

Today would have marked 54 years of marriage between Al and Theresa Clark.

54 years of loving, laughing, bickering, celebrating, road tripping, raising a family, growing old, and most importantly having faith. Together these two shared something people dream of finding all their lives... true unconditional love.

To give you a little summed up story of their love, we begin in the 1960s.

Al was your typical bad boy on the outside. He had the leather, the soft eyes, and the motor cycle.

Theresa on the other hand, was reserved, mature, and welcoming.

They lived down the street from one an other, and only one of them knew the other existed. Al would watch Theresa walk past his window on her way to work, always admiring from afar, never quite able to muster up the courage to stop her. It wasn't until one Sunday morning in Church, when Theresa saw Al. She always said how handsome he was, and how shocked she was that she has never noticed him before.

Eventually the two found their way to each other and began what was a lifetime of happiness together, which included four beautiful children, fourteen wonderful grandchildren, 2 great grand children, and many many traditions...

- Christmas photos of the children all cozied up next to the fireplace.

- Halloween Costumes, custom made.

- Holiday Brunches

- Easter Egg Hunts

- Cross country road trips just the two of them, or sometimes with the kids all packed in the station -wagon, that would break down every 90 miles or so.

- Whole family vacations to Florida, Tennessee, and Kansas City.

...just to name a few

They vowed to love each other day in and day out, and never once did that love fail, even to this day.

Theresa May Clark, my Grandma, passed this last spring of a sudden heart condition. The single most loving, thoughtful, self-less human being I know, taken too soon.

Though I may not agree with the timing of her passing, I can't help but wonder the importance it will bring. God never gives us something we can't handle. He never takes or brings a person into our lives on accident; everything has a purpose.

Right now everything feels different, all the family traditions are missing a special lady, and at times it's hard for me to be mentally present at them. I know, especially when I look to my grandpa, I can feel him hurting, but that is expected when someone you love unconditionally is suddenly taken from you. Everyone in my family is coping, some better than other's, but whenever I feel at my worst I think of a quote from one of my favorite movies, Hope FloatsIf you have never seen the movie it is definitely a good one to watch (disclaimer it is a RomCom), but the last lines in the movie are the best,

"Beginnings are scary. Endings are usually sad, but it's what's in the middle that counts. So, when you find yourself at the beginning, just give hope a chance to float up. And it will."

This resonates so deeply when I think of my grandma. I will never forget the pain of the end, or the happiness all the middle brought me, but now that I am here at a new beginning, one without my grandma. I just need to give hope a chance to float up, and it will.

I know my Grandma is smiling down on me and my family, and I got to believe she has a hand in my sudden aspiration to find myself.

Grandma I love and miss you incredibly, Happy 54 years to you and Grandpa, and thanks for everything you have done and continue to do!

An Introduction

My name is Renee and welcome to my personal blog.

For starters, here are some "Me" facts.

I am a woman.

I come from a fantastic family of six: my mother, father, sister, two brothers, and our dog, Snickers. We do a lot together, and I’d be lying if I didn’t say they are my favorite people.

My favorite way to unwind is running on trail or being physically active in some capacity.

I can lose track of time when reading or playing around in Illustrator.

I am a great listener and extremely open minded. I appreciate all ideas and stories, but can smell bull shit a mile away.

I have an extreme passion for people, which is partly why I don’t mind sharing my experiences with any and all viewers.

Please enjoy my stories, or don’t! :)