Come to the Thursday, Jan. 4 program at the Knoxville Writers’ Guild, when web developer, designer and writer Billy Price will speak. Price will give writers key information on design and web development. The team leader at Knoxville-based Billy Fann Creative, a creative digital marketing company, Price serves clients worldwide.

The meeting will be in the fellowship hall of Central United Methodist Church, 201 3rd Avenue, at 7 p.m. Please enjoy this recent interview with him:

KWG: How long have you been helping artists and entrepreneurs? What got you started? What’s the gain? What’s the pain?

Billy Price

Billy Price: In college, I started free lancing as a graphic designer and web designer. That was 23 years ago. I was studying English and technical writing, so design and multimedia went hand in hand with that. The biggest gain has been that I am forced to keep learning. Everything in my job evolves almost daily, from the consumer mindsets to the design techniques. The biggest pain? I am forced to keep learning.

KWG: Have you led previous programs for writers? If so, what have you walked away with from that experience? How have you utilized it in your work?

Billy Price: For about 3 years I taught a class at UT for English majors. Students taking the class learned to turn a raw document into a publication. Elements included design, how to flow text and how to capture attention. In preparing my own materials and looking at hundreds student assignments, I learned that every piece of work has a task to accomplish. If the work doesn’t do that core task, the work fails. Everything else is flexible.

KWG: You also advise writers on the content/copy they employ for their social media, websites, etc.  Most writers do not write ad copy and are used to longer forms of expression.  Please share one trade secret that helps writers make the transition to ad copy or to pithy social messaging.

Billy Price: Copywriting grabs attention and communicates simply, while being clever. It works best if you leave the reader with a question, which just happens to be answered by your book. Your ad copy should give your reader a reason to own your publication.

KWG: Social media, e-mails, texting, blogging, networking are all outreach vehicles; for a writer are there some channels that are more critical than others?

Billy Price: As your core social media effort, use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google, Pinterest and YouTube. Different social networks have different purposes. Example: Facebook shares ideas quickly, but YouTube works better for instructions. Everything has a purpose, and it all works together to get you higher Google rankings, more web hits, and more sales.

KWG: Please touch on one aspect of your presentation and tell us what we can gain from it.

Billy Price: One core set of concepts we’ll cover: Proximity, Alignment, Repetition, and Contrast. These four concepts teach you were to place things on the page, what size to make them, colors to choose, and how to grab a viewer’s attention.

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