DO YOU HAVE AN ELEVATOR SPEECH? #RRBC

Right now, some of you are staring at this page wondering “What the heck is an elevator speech and why do I need one?”  Well, EVERY writer needs one if he wants to rub elbows with movers and shakers in this industry, and to me that could be anyone who has the ability to purchase my books.

An elevator speech is a very passionate, 60-90 second “spiel,” that you would pitch to the media or any individual or groups who might be interested in (again), purchasing your books.  But, to be effective, this “spiel” must accomplish two things:

  • It must point out three ways your books will change your audience’s lives, and…
  • It must be conveyed with such enthusiasm and passion, that it will be hard for the listener to say “NO” to you.

This elevator speech should literally last no longer than an elevator ride, which means if you’re starting off on floor one, and the both of you are getting off on floor two, you need to make it really good, in a really short amount of time.  {Note:  this “spiel” should be equally effective whether it’s being delivered over the phone, in person, on the web or in print}.

Not comfortable with being put on the spot when asked about your books or your writing?  My advice:  Stand in the mirror and practice your “elevator speech.” I’ve personally done it many times and I’ve been told that it’s the best speech some have ever heard!

But, I don’t want you to share your elevator speech with anyone until your friend in the mirror (or your significant other) tells you that it is absolutely PERFECT!  Just imagine being faced with the possibility of being booked for a radio show.  You need to be able to present this “spiel” in such a way, that it explodes in the minds of those media people, convincing them to book you right on the spot…even if that spot is in an elevator.

So, today, I want you all to work on honing this very important skill BEFORE you (hypothetically) take your next elevator ride!

If this post was helpful to you, please follow my blog today.  You will always find new and useful information such as what has been presented here.

Thanks for dropping by and we hope to see you again soon!  Don’t forget to share this post on social media, and to also LIKE it before you leave!

The #PregnantFuture Blog Tour has stopped here! @Jinlobify #RRBC

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Pregnant Future

(No One Knows What Tomorrow Will Bring)

A True-Life Memoir

On this last day of my tour, I would like to talk about our great book club, The Rave Reviews Book Club (#RRBC). Before I became a member of this great club, I published through those publishing houses that promise you heaven on earth. I needed them for the marketing of my books. In as much as I do not regret using them– because I learned something by so doing– I know now, as an indie, that using publishing houses that charge you to publish your book, is a waste of money. They do not deliver on all their promises. In fact, all they are good for is perhaps, printing your book. This you can do yourself with many services out there.

After publishing two book this way, and getting only two reviews for one, and three for the other, I decided this third time to go it alone. During my research for marketing these books, I stumbled on an RRBC tweet. I responded to this tweet. Nonnie Jules herself invited me to try out the book club. I had nothing to lose, so I did. This is my second year with the group, and I must say that it has been a most rewarding two years. Reviews of my books have grown in leaps and bounds. I have met many wonderful online friends who not only support, but encourage me.

RRBC was the second internet book club that I joined. The first one did not give me as much support, even though I read and reviewed authors in that group. The few reviews I received from that group were mostly disparaging. One gets the feeling that some of those reviewers never even read the book! I love our group, but above all, I love, respect, and admire the founder of our group, Nonnie Jules. I love her giving spirit, that keeps giving.

Pregnant Future Trailer

https://youtu.be/86vP8_9Ri20

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

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 Joy has written and published extensively on national and international scholarly journals, magazines, and newspapers. 

Her first short story I Come from Utopia was published in African Voices, Spring/Summer, 2007, pg. 18. Since then, she has published numerous others in RAVE SOUP FOR THE WRITER’S SOUL Anthology, Bks 1-3.

Mirror of Our Lives: Voices of Four Igbo Women was published in 2011, and       was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Book Contest in 2012. She has also two      books published in the Italian language.

The Legend of the Walking Dead: Igbo Mythologies, is a journey into the    mysteries of life and death of the Igbos of Nigeria was published in 2014.      

In Pregnant Future, her new Novel, Justina is the story of every young woman    who found herself alone in the world to fend for herself. It is the story of the pitfalls that await such a             woman. It is the story of survival

 AUTHOR OF:

Legend of The Walking Dead: Igbo Mythologies

Mirror of Our Lives: Voices of Four Igbo Women

Pregnant Future

 

CONTACT:

 Website:         https://thelookingglassjnlb.wordpress.com

Bog:                 www.Jinlobify.Com

Twitter:           @Jinlobify

Facebook:       Facebook

Welcome #RRBC #RWISA Member, Marlena Smith!

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In her own words…

How long have you been writing?

Since a very young age, 2nd grade being my earliest memory. Writing has always been a big part of my life, a favorite past-time.

How many books have you authored?

I have three short stories/poems in RAVE SOUP FOR THE WRITER’S SOUL Anthology. My debut novel, THE POWER OF LOVE, will be released May 1st.

Do you have a writing schedule?

Not really. I write when time allows, when I feel inspired. I try to write some each day, but that doesn’t always happen. My days tend to get hectic, but I try to make up for missed time on my less-busy days.

You’re a member of RAVE WRITERS – INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY OF AUTHORS (RWISA). Why do you think you were accepted into this exclusive group?

RWISA brings the good writers into light, so I hope that’s where I fall… a good writer. Although I only have a few short writings in the Anthology, I’ve spent a great deal of time on my blog. A lot of my writing can be found there, and I like to believe that’s helped bring me to where I am.

Modesty aside, what separates your writing from the millions of other writers in the world?

Well, no one has ever told the story from my view, only I can do that. I like to think my story ideas are unique, the characters are relatable and that the writing is as close to perfect as it can get. (Thanks to editors, of course!) It’s important to bring the story to life, to put the reader there, and I hope I do just that.

If you could spend a day picking the brain of one author, who would that be? Why?

If I could choose anyone, whether alive today or not, I would choose Jane Austen. I fell in love with her stories at a young age and still reflect back to them. Even today, people are using her story ideas in movies, in other books, in plays. She’s timeless. So are her ideas.

Are you a die-hard INDIE writer who loves having complete control of your work, or, if you were offered a publishing contract today, would you sign on the dotted line?

That’s a hard question. I feel like once you are an Indie writer and you have lived that life and survived that struggle, that it will always be a part of who you are. I’ll be honest, I would love for my book to be “big,” maybe even on the big screen. More and more, we are seeing Indies being recognized, and it doesn’t take a big publishing house to make that happen.

As an author, where do you see yourself in 5 years?

I hope by then that I will have several books out, double-digits!! I also hope I have made a name for myself, that people are excited to see my next book release. Fame, fortune… that’s not me. I want to be known for my words, known for my ideas. That’s the only fortune I need.

What is the ONE tool that has been the most beneficial tool in the marketing of your books?

Social Media. Apps, internet, access to worldwide knowledge… it all has come a long way. Using social media to network can really be rewarding. Now, when I say social media, it’s a very generalized term. It includes Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and even blogs and sites. Social Media, especially Twitter, has helped me grow into a better writer. It has brought me amazing friendships and even brought be to RRBC. That alone is a huge thing.

Name one writer that you know of, member or non-member of RRBC, who you feel should be added to the RWISA Roster of elite members? Why?

I haven’t read as many RRBC books as I would like, although there are LOTS on my TBR list! The books I have read, those authors already belong to RWISA. I don’t feel it fair to recommend someone without reading their book first, but I’ll keep my eyes open.

What is the one piece of advice that you could share that would be most valuable for those aspiring to not only be writers, but those aspiring to be great writers?

Never give up. If you have a story in that mind of yours, write it. You’re the only one that can tell it how you would tell it. Keep writing, keep chasing that dream. Never stop.

Do you believe that writers who churn out several books a year are really putting out quality work?

It really depends on the writer, on their time, on their priorities, on their skills. I’ve seen it both ways. A lot of published books does not mean the writing is good, just like few published books doesn’t mean the writing is bad. Too many factors.

If you had promised your fans a book by a certain date only to find that your book wasn’t the best it could be, would you go ahead and publish your book just to meet that self-imposed deadline and deliver as promised, or, would you disappoint your fans and shelve the book until it was absolutely ready? No matter your reason, please explain why?

I would work extra hard to get as close to that deadline as possible. I don’t like breaking promises. That’s not the kind of person I am. But, I also only want to put out my best work. I would definitely reach out to my readers and let them know what’s going on. I think it’s important to be open. But priorities would definitely change. My focus would be solely on that book, so that I could get close to fulfilling that promise.

In your opinion, what makes a book “a great book?”

The story has to be a good one, an intriguing one. The writing has to be as close to perfect as the writer could get. (Mistakes happen, we all know that!) The characters need to be realistic, even if from a futuristic or fantasy concept. There needs to be drama, a climax, a turning point. It can’t be boring, has to keep you turning the next page.

If you received a review of your book which stated that there were editing & proofing “issues,” what’s the first thing you would do? And the second?

I would check for those issues, definitely. Regardless of whether or not I agreed, I would thank the person for their honesty.

MY BOOKS:
*RAVE SOUP FOR THE WRITER’S SOUL Anthology
*THE POWER OF LOVE, Release Date of 05.01.17

SOCIAL MEDIA:
*Twitter – @_MarlenaSmith_
*Facebook – authormarlenasmith
*Blog – “Life As I Know It”

Thanks for dropping by to  visit with Marlena today!  Please do drop by 4WillsPub to visit the other amazing authors who are on tour today, as well as the authors who you didn’t get to visit with earlier in the tour!  Marlena loves to chat, so do engage her below!

Welcome Nonnie Jules, President of Rave Reviews Book Club and Rave Writers–International Society of Authors

From the Pen of Mae Clair

Hoy, boy! Do I have a special guest for you today, gang! I am honored to be hosting Nonnie Jules, the woman whose vision became Rave Reviews Book Club. Please welcome the president of RRBC and the founding member/president of the Rave Writers International Society of Authors! I’m thrilled to have her here today for an awesome Q&A and personal post!

Banner logo for author Nonnie Julies, president of Rave Reviews Book ClubHow long have you been writing?
This will sound cliché, but I really have been writing all my life, at least since the 3rd grade.  I became a published author in 2012.

How many books have you authored? Please share the titles of up to three.
I have authored 3 books, and co-authored one.  The titles are “THE GOOD MOMMIES’  GUIDE TO RAISING (ALMOST) PERFECT DAUGHTERS,” “DAYDREAM’S DAUGHTER, NIGHTMARE’S FRIEND,” and “SUGARCOATIN’ IS FOR CANDY & PACIFYIN’ IS FOR KIDS.”  I can’t list the co-authored title because…

View original post 1,694 more words

8 Ways to Tarnish Your Author Brand, #RRBC #RWISA

Recently, I presented a short session on BUILDING YOUR AUTHOR PLATFORM during the RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB’S 1st Annual, WRITERS’ CONFERENCE & BOOK EXPO.  (That session is still available online for a short while, and if you’d like to register for it, you still can > here).  I’d like to spend a moment now, talking a bit more about your brand…your author platform, and how important it is to take care of it.

You’ve worked hard to build your brand (name recognition) and now what? Well, protecting it should be top priority!  You may find this funny or even unbelievable, but many don’t even know what “branding” is, let alone what it means to their own author platform.  Your brand is your image, your professional identity…it is what people think about, when they hear your name.

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Let me give you an example of a brand:  I am my brand…NONNIE JULES.  Everything that I have created as an author, falls under the NONNIE JULES brand.  What do you think of when you hear the name NONNIE JULES?  I’m quite sure, as with many others, your mind immediately goes to  Rave Reviews By Nonnie Jules, RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB (RRBC), RAVE WRITERS INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY OF AUTHORS (RWISA), or even THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE. Anything that can be related to having been created by me as an author, is all part of my brand.

1RRBC Badge

Some never even think about how important their brand is to their author platform until they realize they don’t have one, or they do something stupid to mess it up.  And, if you mess it up, you’re going to have a much more difficult task cleaning it up, than it was building it up from scratch (so, try to keep it clean).

Because I think branding is crucial in our field, I’d like to share with you the 8 quickest ways that you can tarnish your author brand (in hopes that you wouldn’t dare make any of these mistakes):

  1. Aligning yourself with any and everyone you meet, without care as to whether or not they have a positive reputation in the social media community or in your real world.  We sit behind keyboards each day, engaging in our virtual worlds, but, do we really know those we are engaging with?  Those we are quick to call friend?  Those we have formed alliances with?  Well, it would be well worth your time to watch closely the antics and behaviors of these people before you become too vested in association with them.  If Joe Blow has a horrible reputation for being rude, obnoxious, dishonest, and just an all around pain-in-the-ass, yet you defend him at every turn, that is a poor reflection on you, my friend, whether you want to accept that or not.  People who might have respected you greatly before, are starting to look at you in a different light because of your association with JB.  Remember, birds of a feather, stick together…and, you are definitely the company you keep;
  2. Displaying a lack of professionalism on social media.  Don’t get into any Twitter Wars or Facebook Fights;  it’s not a good look at all.  These people don’t really know you (unless you’re putting all of your business on the internet for them to know and that is a HUGE no-no in my book, by the way).  Words are just words. You’re an adult, so learn to ignore them when you should;
  3. Not keeping your word.  Credibility is everything in our literary world so if you say you’re going to do something, do it.  If you say that you’re about something, be it.  Simple!;
  4. Burning bridges.  You never know, the fingers that you step on today to get ahead, just might be attached to the hands that have to aid you tomorrow.  Always leave every relationship, especially professional ones, in a clean manner.  Always leave the door open for you to walk back thru it with your head held high, should you ever have to;
  5. Sharing inappropriate material with your followers.  Sharing photos of your bikini-clad body, straddling your boyfriend on a beach in Florida, while in a serious lip-lock, is not what your followers want to see.  Keep your material clean…please.  I’m sure your parents will appreciate that, too;
  6. Sharing material geared towards someone else’s brand.  You’ve worked hard to build your social media following and they are following you for the content-specific material you provide which appeals to them.  If you are an author who writes inspirational material, then it’s a pretty safe bet that your audience isn’t interested in your postings about Star Wars or anything under the paranormal/sci-fi genre.  Give ’em what they came there for, as the saying goes;
  7. Over-promise, then under-deliver.  If you guarantee that your phones are answered 24  hours a day, 7 days a week, your clients had better not ever have to listen to a recorded voice message or an unanswered phone’s ringing.  Of course, there will be instances when this is totally out of your control, but your customers will understand if your great reputation precedes you;  just let that be an exception and not your rule, even when you are promising your readers your next release.  Don’t promise, if you can’t deliver.  Instead, try under-promising, then over-delivering!  We all like that, don’t we?;
  8. Failing to communicate.  This is truly the #1 reason on how to tarnish your brand but I’m listing it last because I want you to focus on it a lot longer.  With today’s technology, which gives us opportunities to communicate with our communities instantly, there is no reason why your clients/members, etc, should be left in “no-response” land.  Know you’re going to be late to a meeting?  Then send a text message letting the others know.  Received a question that you don’t have the answer to?  Send a quick response to let them know that you’re working on it and will get back to them with an answer, asap.  Overslept and missed an appointment?  Apologize profusely until they feel that you’re truly sorry.

Now that you are aware of how not to tarnish your author brand, why don’t you get started on doing just the opposite, as those are the things that will surely guarantee the success of building on it. Remember, it’s quicker to build it, than it is to try and rebuild it, at least in this arena.

Here’s to building and safeguarding your successful

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So, are you safeguarding yours?  Share with us some of your ideas on how you’re working to do it.

Thanks for dropping by, my friends!  I hope to see you again soon!

#RRBC, IT’S COMING FROM BOTH SIDES

Last night, I happened upon a very interesting documentary about the desegregation of busing in Boston public schools.  “The call for desegregation and the first years of its implementation, led to a series of racial protests and riots that brought national attention, particularly from 1974 to 1976.  It led to a decline of public school enrollment and white flight to the suburbs.”  (ref:  Wikipedia)

In this documentary, a teacher asked his class of all black students, why they thought the white kids had left their school?  The response was:  “They didn’t want to sit next to us.”  Recently, during another open discussion on social media, I read this comment by a white student:  “They are prejudiced against us, too.”  (WOW!  When the word too is used, that’s an open admission that this is going on, right?)

I don’t recall the name of the documentary, as I came in on the middle of it, but it moved me so much, I felt compelled to pen this poem…as it is coming from both sides, people. Let’s wake up.  Our kids are speaking.

***

“DOES MY LIFE MATTER?”

I am a black woman, and because of the shade of my skin and coarseness of my hair, because of the fullness of my hips, my lips and the bold colors I wear…some don’t find me as attractive as my fairer counterparts.  You see, I’m no longer your house-maid or here for your sexual pleasure;  no longer Mamie to your children, I’m now someone’s Mother…a treasure.  But, does my life matter?

I am a black man, and because of my dark skin and the boldness of my stance, because of the kinky in my hair, the anger in my stare, and the wear and tear shown on my hands…some still don’t see me as a man.  You see, I’m no longer your field property or your whipping post.  I’ve freedom papers and own land now, maybe, more than most.  You build cages to hold me, guilty or not;  where you should build institutions of higher learning,  you lock me away for little things, then leave me there to rot.  Will my bed forever be a cot?  But, does my life matter?

I am a white woman, and because of my milk dove skin and cute, pinched nose, thin ruby red lips and fair skin that glows…with my pearly whites and prominent chin…some still look at me and despise the skin I’m in.  I was never privy to the pain that was caused.  I was born into that hatred…those God-awful laws.  So, does my life still matter?

I am a white man, born into privilege and wealth, easy life, perfect health, yet…I’m still persecuted and referred to as “the man.”  I, too, hate the ways of the Ku Klux Klan.  My neighbors are black, white, green and red…still, I haven’t fled.  To be where everyone looks more like me, is not where I want to be.  I, too, would like to one day be FREE. (Yes, FREE!  It also applies to me!)…FREE of the labels that bind because of the color of my skin. I’ve never owned any human or degraded any man. But, does my life still matter?

I am a brown-skinned woman and because of my accented words, you think I should be silent…quiet and not heard.  I can do more, than clean your windows and floors.  Just ask me what I’m capable of, you’d be surprised, I’m sure.  I may have come here via the back of a truck, or even the legal route, if I was blessed with such luck.  Maybe I was born here, and my parents, too.  In your eyes, would that still make me less American than you?  Does my life matter?

I am a brown-skinned man and though maybe a bit stocky, I’m no less in appearance, than your brawn and cocky.  I’m not a rapist, a thief or thug…but a man like you, with kids to hug.  I’m not ashamed to tend your lawns and trees, but Executive, also a title I’d wear with ease;  whatever it takes…my family to feed. Don’t dismiss, or overlook my face;  I may not have been born here, but I’m here to stay.  And with that said, does my life still matter?

With all that’s going on, there’s much racial unrest.  It’s time to put differences aside and put real LOVE to the test.  We can’t keep fighting each other, when there are real wars going on.  We must come together in love, heal and stand strong.  There are real enemies among us, and their names we know not.  We must stand on the front lines, together and talk.

The differences between us are fewer than those in our heads;  and in the end, until we draw our last breath,  we all still bleed red.  Yes, that small matter is what makes us brothers, and binds us tighter than any other.

That stream of red flowing thru our veins, is what should force us to…
release all blame,
stop the pain,
forge ahead,
no more blood we’ll shed.

Yes, the hatred does come from both sides and it’s time WE all bring it to a peaceful end.

YOU MATTER.

I MATTER

WE MATTER, ALL.

“ALL LIVES MATTER.”

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 It’s RECRUITMENT DAY at RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB and if you want to  feel love and a great sense of belonging in an International community of supportive folks, then JOIN US today!  Writers, Bloggers, Authors, and Readers…you’re all invited to become part of one amazing family, where EVERYONE MATTERS!!!!

Homewreckers…BEWARE! A Husband Scorned #RRBC

You know, I try not to sit in judgment of anyone and I don’t condone violence of any kind.  But, since I am so opposed to HOMEWRECKERS, I’m OK with this husband “fighting” for his family.  (Personally, I think the butt-whipping should have been reserved for the wife, I mean, maybe she lied to the homewrecker and said she was single!)  LOL!!!

TRUST ME, THIS IS A MUST WATCH!!!

My daughters both laughed when they saw this (and then shared it with me).  After a moment, my youngest said:  “I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to laugh or feel sad about that.” My oldest said:  “Sis, that was sad.  The music was really dramatic and just made me sad, but I couldn’t help but laugh initially.”

Well, both my daughters have these amazing hearts (they got them from their dad), but me, I just couldn’t help myself!

It’s the weekend, people, and I hope I just got yours off to a really great start!  #LaughterIsTheBestMedicine

Tell us what you think about homewrecking (Penguins) in the comments section below!

Give Them Their Flowers Now (#RRBC)

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Many, many, many (many) years ago, there was a gospel song that I loved by the Rev. James Cleveland that said “Give me my flowers… right now. If you feel like I deserve anything, don’t wait ’til I’m dead and gone.  If I’ve been nice to you or done something to make you happy along the way, then give me my few  lil’ flowers now, so I can see the beauty that they bring.”

This song came to mind after I received an email this morning from one of my dear friends and fellow member of the RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB.  Since this message was sent to me privately, I will not disclose who this member is, but because it was so beautiful and touched my heart so tremendously, I feel that I would be selfish to keep it all to myself.  (I have removed the name and other identifying info from this email, but if the party who gifted me with this treasure wishes to identify her/himself, please feel free to do so).

“Hi, Nonnie…I’m incredibly behind on everything, including my correspondence.  But I want to thank you for selecting my book for a seat in the #RRBC house.  It was such a surprise to open my mail & see that.  I was thrilled!  Also, I just saw today that my book was on your review page.  That was another surprise, and totally made my day.  I knew, of course, that you had read and reviewed the story, but I didn’t know that it had made it to your actual review page.  So now I can post your SEAL OF APPROVAL for my book on my own site.  Nonnie, I can’t begin to tell you what it means to me that you like my work.  It’s funny, but as I edit, I find myself asking “What would Nonnie do?” when I have a question about something.  I don’t think you realize the impact that you have on those of us who are trying to produce the best work possible.  Your presence in my life is a gift, and I don’t think I tell you enough how much you are appreciated.  *Hugs*”

To the wonderful soul who gifted me with this amazing present this morning, THANK YOU for giving me my flowers now…while I’m still alive to enjoy the beauty that they  bring.  The sunshine in my heart and the smile on my face, are reflective of my immense enjoyment of their beauty.

So many of you send me similar kind messages, and so much so, that I have had to create a FEEL GOOD FILE to store all your precious words of gratitude.  This THANK YOU is for all of you who have gifted me in this most precious way.

Many of you know that after our dear, sweet KATHRYN C. TREAT passed away, we named many of our programs, etc. in her name and in her honor.  There is a very special IN MEMORY OF…page on our site for her, our VIP Lounge is now named after her, and our treasure chest filled with our book giveaways is also named in her honor.

I wish that we had given Kathryn all these flowers while she was still here to enjoy their beauty, but I truly believe that she has a much better view of them from where she sits now.  Because of the beautiful legacy of love, kindness and support that Kathryn left behind, I will no longer wait to “gift” our deserving members with the flowers they so richly deserve, so that they may enjoy them while they are still here.

For this very reason, on yesterday, Saturday, Oct. 15, we changed the name of our TOP REVIEWER Award.  It is now The JOY NWOSU LO-BAMIJOKO “TOP REVIEWER” Award!  For those of you who are wondering why this award has been named in her honor, well, Joy was the first member of our club to purchase/read/review over 100+ books!  And, she did it in record time!  Joy, we hope you will enjoy these flowers while you are still here, because your legacy will also be a great one and one that we will never forget!

As I wrap this up, I ask that if you have someone in your life or someone that you appreciate immensely for just being them, show your gratitude by gifting them with their flowers today. Don’t wait until they’re dead and in some cold grave. Those flowers could come in the form of a phone call, an ecard, an email, or even a little text message.  These cost you nothing.  I assure you they’ll derive more pleasure from them now than they could ever get from them sitting atop a casket in a sad funeral home.

Do you have someone that you need to give flowers to today?  If so, share it with us in the comments section below.

If This Makes U Uncomfortable, Then U Make Me Uncomfortable #RRBC

“We can’t understand their lives until we walk a day in someone else’s shoes.  And, because the shade of our skin isn’t interchangeable, what we can do, is we can all stand (or kneel) together to affect positive change, not for one, but for all.  For this dream to become reality, we must change the way we look at each other, realize that the strongest thing that binds us is color…not the color of our skin, but the color of the blood that courses through each of our veins. And whether you like it or not, that color makes us equal and all the same.”

~ Nonnie Jules

Take a look:

 Who can believe that in 2016, we are still feeling the effects of racism?

What I can believe is this, if we can’t talk about it, we can’t change it.  And, until we start having those deep conversations about our unfounded fears and biases, then we will remain rooted in this cycle of RACISM.  See how I’m not afraid to say that? I’m not afraid to say it, because I’m intelligent enough to know that it does still exist and you don’t have to have brown skin to realize what your eyes can clearly see.

Some of you will read this post, watch this video and leave without sharing a comment…because it makes you uncomfortable.  Well, then, you make me a little uncomfortable.  You see, I don’t worry about the people who aren’t afraid to call a pig a pig or a snake a snake.  I worry most about the ones who try to pretend and make that pig and snake into something other than what they are, because they don’t like how the pig or the snake looks.

Ask yourself:  Why can I comment on any of Nonnie’s other posts about books, children, and writing processes, but I don’t feel comfortable “touching” on subjects such as this one?

Hey, you…yes, YOU…the uncomfortable ones…stand in front of a mirror and take a good look at what you see…and if what you see on the outside appears to be OK, then you might want to look a little deeper, before your uncomfortable-ness turns into an unwarranted fear, and then that unwarranted fear turns into ignorance, and then that ignorance, into bloodshed of people who don’t have to die.

#ChangeComesWhenWeAllTakeAStand (or kneel)

#GiveMeAChanceToKneel #BelieveMeIWillTakeIt

and..

if you don’t like it, then that’s your problem.

Go out and change someone’s world today, in a positive way!

Traditional vs Indie: My Little Two Cents…again. #RRBC

Recently, I wrote a post where I briefly spoke on the difference between being traditionally published and Indie published;  that post was called “Why I Choose To Be An Indie Author.”  A fellow RRBC member, who is traditionally published, made a comment to the effect that you have more promotion and support, etc., when you are traditionally published.  Well, here I am again, dropping my little two-cents on that matter.

While watching a talk show earlier today (I sometimes have to take breathers, you know), there was an author who writes under the umbrella of one of my genres.  These days, anytime I am watching a talk show or a news program and the word author pops up, I immediately run to my computer to look the author up.  I belong to an organization of such awesome people, that who knows, it could be a fellow member of mine getting some major talk-show attention!

Turns out, I don’t know this author and I don’t know her work, but when I went to Amazon, I did take notice of some of her stats of the book that was being promoted on the talk show.  The title of the book was called GOOD ENOUGH MOTHER, and the author, Rene Syler, who has worked as an anchor of CBS’s, The Early Show.

After reading the blurb, I noticed this book had only 14 reviews so I assumed that it must have been a new release.  Reading a bit further, I was shocked to find that this book had been published in 2007!  WOW!  That was approximately 9 years ago! Then, I noticed the book was published by Simon and Schusterone of the largest English-language publishers, founded in 1924, and a division of powerhouse, CBS.  (I guess that would definitely land them in the BIG traditional publishing lane, right?)

Now, in comparison, I’d like to share my stats…little ole’ me stats, as they stand today.  I am an Indie Author, I am a partner in my small publishing company, 4WillsPublishing, and I have authored to-date, three titles, co-authored one, and have appeared in a couple of anthologies.  Please, pay very close attention:

*May, 2013, published “THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE…” a Parenting Guide – 25 reviews

*November, 2013, published “DAYDREAM’S DAUGHTER…” a Novel – 81 reviews

*March, 2014, published  “SUGARCOATIN’ IS FOR CANDY…”  a Non-Fiction/Self-Help guide – 66 reviews

*February, 2015, published “IF ONLY THERE WAS MUSIC…” a Poetry book – 18 reviews

Again, I am an Indie Author and I wear that title with great Pride.  I don’t have, nor have I ever had, a big publishing house standing behind, beside, or in front of me.  Yet, going back to the words of my fellow member, and I quote:  “The big negative to being an indie author is that you don’t get the book reviews and exposure that a big house can offer. I’ve found that most frustrating,”  I’m going to have to beg to differ.

I don’t need to say anymore, do I?  Not when the proof is clearly in the dates and the reviews, right?  I’m just going to leave you with my famous stare-glare and a two-word question in response to my fellow member’s opinion of traditional vs Indie publishing:

-________________-  “Oh, really?”

Cheers to being Indie!

cheers1