JOAN  MERRIAM

Author & Freelance Writer

WRITING  PROJECTS

It was as a graduate intern at a Sacramento CBS-affiliate television station that I became involved in the story that would ultimately form the basis for my full-length work of nonfiction, Little Girl Lost: A True Story of Shattered Innocence & Murder, first published in 1992. The book sold over 400,000 copies worldwide.

 

Over the years, I have also authored a number of feature articles, commentaries, profiles, and columns which have appeared in dozens of national and regional magazines and newspapers. Among them are AARP Magazine, Sacramento Magazine, Sierra Heritage, the Sacramento Bee, and Vidura: The Press Institute of India Mass Media Magazine.

 

In 2021, I received an Honorable Mention from the New Millennium Awards for my article, "Whispers of a Forgotten Plague."

I also write a syndicated newspaper column on life with dogs and cats which runs monthly in The Union newspaper, and twice-monthly in the Chico Enterprise, Victor Valley Daily Press, and the Vail Daily. 

 

PROFESSIONAL  SERVICES

SIERRA  COLLEGE

I began my teaching career at Sierra College—a California community college with its main campus in Rocklin, about 15 miles east of Sacramento—in January of 1995. 

 

I started off  in the college's Business Department teaching courses in business communications. Soon, I moved into the Communication Studies Department, where I've taught a variety of courses including public speaking, group communications, intercultural and interpersonal communications, and mass media.

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A year after joining the college, I began teaching at Sierra's just-completed Nevada County Campus in Grass Valley, a small community in the foothills of California's western Sierra Nevada mountains.

EDITING & COPY-EDITING

As a freelance writer for over two decades, my extensive experience in both editing and copy-editing can help guide your work as a writer or creative consultant, and insure that your words and the meaning behind them have the power and impact you need.  I have experience in editing fiction and nonfiction creative projects; pieces for business, trade, and professional publications; and articles for academic journals.

COMMUNICATIONS CONSULTING

Helping nonprofit organizations and small businesses grow and succeed in the challenging environment of the 21st century is my passion. I’ve been in the trenches as a businesswoman as well as a nonprofit leader, so I know that this work is about much more than work: it's about making a difference.  That’s where I come in: making sure your community understands the importance of your work—not just what you do, but why it matters.

 

ABOUT  JOAN

I was born in Auburn, a small town in the low foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains, about 30 miles northeast of Sacramento.

It was as a graduate intern at a Sacramento CBS-affiliate television station that I became involved in the story that formed the basis for my 1992 nonfiction book, Little Girl Lost, and launched my career as a writer.

Beginning in May of 2012, I began writing about life with dogs in a monthly column called "Casey's Corner"--in honor of my previous Golden boy, Casey--for our local newspaper.  In 2019 I syndicated my column to three additional newspapers in California and Colorado.

 

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