Category Archives: Entrepreneurship

I’m Back At The Blog With Exciting Updates!


Happy Friday, writers and authors! I hope your summer is going well. I’m back from a brief rest period to reconnect with y’all and bring you up to date on what’s been happening in my writing world of late.

Authentic Woman, my business brand that champions women voices, celebrated its 8th year in the blogosphere last month!  I’m excited to report that my purpose mission to empower the authentic voice in women has become a recognizable, trusted and respected name in the world of self-development and women’s empowerment. At this posting, we have well over 2000 followers, and with your voices adding to the mix, it just keeps getting better.

I’ve been invited to join several prestigious groups consisting of consultants, mentors, coaches, lifestyle strategists, etc, to share experiences in the environment of our brand expertise in making a difference in the lives of others. I’m always happy and downright humbled and blessed to be in the inspiring and aspiring presence of like-minded folk. That’s just God, people!

At Authentic Woman on Monday, I shared the cover to Unleash Your Pearls~ Empowering Women’ s Voices, with my followers. Today, I’m revealing it to you. Yay! Trust and believe, the cover is awesome, but what you’re going to get when you open the book will be explosive (in a  good champion the woman voice way) Keep checking in for the book’s release.

WzW-Unlease Your Pearls CoverNow here are links to stuff I’ve accomplished with my writings while on break:

Short Story.
“We have received it, and it will be considered for our next issue.
Thank you”
The Six Hens submissions team
Article.
My Natural Hair Essay.
Recently sold a nonfiction piece to the “Lessons from Losers in Love” Anthology.

I think all of those online classes( free & fee based) are finally kicking in. I actually look forward to editing short stories and previously rejected submissions, which is a far cry from my earlier editing process (hated it!)  I feel like I’m Stella, the writer, getting her groove back. 🙂

Quote:

“Success comes when the work you do helps other people recognize who they are. It is when you see your work make a difference in another person, who in finding themselves, will sow seeds of their gifts and pay it forward by helping others.” 

Clara Freeman
 

 

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Eye On The Poet: Krissy Mosley


Happy Friday!  So, technically, I’m not back on the blogs until next week, but I have some great April guests lined up for y’all, in celebration of National Poetry Month.

I love meeting wordsmiths who takes the ordinary and molds it into something meaningful and extraordinary. Please join me in welcoming the poetess, Krissy Mosley to Eye On The Poet~

 

index

Poetry Manifesto~

I am electric

My creative flows – makes up who I am, and who I am becoming

I am art

I am these poetic currants

I am studying me

I am growing my art’s intuition

I am my art’s path toward my true self

I am loving  all of its ups down’s – the ins and outs of art making

Poetry lets me breathe

I am alive

I am much more than words alone

I am this journey to my oceans

I am the lungs to my pen

I am she who writes of freedom

I am she- listening to the howling winds

I am thirsting for life’s utmost peace

I am beating, loving and reaching….♥

Krissy Mosley

index2Writing way down in my spirit brings me happiness

Blogging for three years, recalling historical events through Poetry

Poet for Mother Bethel A.M.E Church, Phila, P.A.

Author of Short Edition of Poetry “Seventh Fire”

M.J. Master Jurisprudence Health Law Degree, Widener School of Law,

Follow me https://visionariekindness.com/

Twitter @krissymosley83

Did you all enjoy reading Krissy’s Poetry Manifesto as much a I did? Make sure to visit her blog for an awesome reading experience and follow her on Twitter! Y’all can thank me later:)

Everyone get out there and enjoy the spring weather this weekend and join me next Friday for another celebratory post in honor of National Poetry Month. I can hardly wait to introduce you to a giant in the world of poets/ poetry and writing contests!

Today’s Quote:

It is precisely the possibility of realizing a dream that makes life interesting.” – Paulo Coelho

 

Five Profit Making Techniques For Your First Book


thbookssHappy Easter, Authors!  It’s so exciting for a writer to finally finish a first book and put it out there for readership, rave reviews and purchase. I mean, I would love to see Unleash Your Pearls in the hands of women and men alike, getting all inspired and feeling the “ish” of just how deserving of God’s blessings they are.  Wouldn’t that be something?! Well, rest easy for now, my lucky readers, we’re still at the publishers, but  once we launch, you will get the memo:)

First time authors put in their dues, with the nail-biting that’s a nimble away from becoming a habit, the nighttime nightmares, sweating tears and negative fears, non-withstanding; it is the desire of first time authors to give readers the best extension of themselves through their art. Oftentimes, these authors find themselves in a quandary because at the end of the day, they know their validation and financial sustainability as authors come from their book sales.

thbook sale

Nowadays, more books are being published by first time authors than ever before and most authors realize that unless you are a celebrity or a bestselling Terry McMillan, the first  months of your book being out there, more than likely will result in few sales. This can be a daunting experience. As writers we have to get pro-creative to cultivate a satisfying book profit outcome. I don’t know about other authors on the scene with their first books, but I’m looking to land the bestseller list for my pearl and so can you.

Here are five profit-making techniques for your first book~

  1. Book Blurb… If you know you have a great book to offer readers. You have to start grinding and get your book into the hands of the people. Use your blog to promote your book by offering brief excerpts from time to time. This technique is one used by many authors to bring awareness to their upcoming book launch. It stimulates the reader’s interest in your book, without making them feel pressured to buy and if your book just happens to be bestseller worthy, like my (Unleash your pearls), for example, then, all the better:)
  2. Offer a free copy of your book to another blogger in exchange for an honest review on Amazon.com or on their blog…I’ve done this for many  bloggers turned authors. As an Amazon book reviewer, I know this works! Not only have authors benefited from my reviews, they have seen an increase in book readership, as a result.  Of the many reviews I’ve done over the years, only one author asked that I change the ratings authors depend on  4 or5 star ratings for their books to make a profit and I do understand this, but, I am honest in my reviews and therefore, my review are not coerced. I do book review at my writer’s blog still, when time permits.
  3.  Use your social media to announce your book’s launch, links of purchase and any other information complimentary to purchase, for example, where reader can pre-order a copy before it launches.
  4. Connect with colleagues on Linkedin… Of course, use all of your social media resources to talk about your book, but I love the connections I’ve made with like-minded professionals on Linkedin because I’ve gotten asked to participate in business ventures, joined esteemed group in my genres, appeared on blog-talk radio to promote my work and had work accepted that will bring awareness to my business brand from which my book is based. The stellar folks you meet on Linkedin can be your book’s game-changer!  You can’t always receive and not be willing to give in return and that’s why I  appreciate LinkedIn connections~ Good business practice.
  5. Finally, as a new author, you just have to make your name known, by any lawful means necessary. Get out there and tell people who you are and what your book can do for them before it launches. Be pro-creatively active, y’all and take your book to colleagues, connections, readers, reviewers and critics alike. Bring the food to the influence table! Get to know your local librarian or bookstore owner, talk about your book and set up a reading.Be that ‘expert’ panelist or guest blogger on popular brand websites or blog talk radio spots. Join a twitter chat or host a webinar.

Whether your brand teaches, entertains, motivates , inspires or encourages another to aspire to be the best person s/he can be, in order to make your book a success, you can do what needs to be done to get your book in the hands of readers. There are many creative avenues from which to sell your great book and introduce your expertise and brand to the world. Get on the good foot, new authors, time’s-a-wasting because people all over the world are waiting to read your awesome book!

Did you find this post helpful?  Do you know of other savvy ways new authors can ensure their book sale? Please share in the comments. We’d appreciate your resourceful tips.

I want to give a special thanks to all of my new and seasoned followers for being a part of Clara54 Writers Blog. Y’all bring the Sunshine! I’m taking a brief spring break and will see all of you in a few weeks. In the meantime, keep on grinding and make those book sales, people. 🙂

Build a Powerful Author Brand to Break Through the Noise By Kathy Meis


Happy Friday, peeps! And I mean that in the most loving way:) So, I feel like I’m having this weird, mystical, amazing season in my life where all the stars are aligned and my cup runneth over with meaningful connections. One such connection is Kathy Meis, who is founder and CEO of Bublish,Screen Shot 2014-08-12 at 1.13.09 PM the world’s first complete publishing solution with integrated brand-building and discoverability features. Kathy is the “ish” in the book publishing/marketing and promotion arena. Today, Kathy shares five simple steps to help craft an effective author brand.

kathy photo

Did you know that readers are fifteen times more likely to purchase a book from an author whose name they recognize? In a sea of content, readers flock to what they know. That’s why it has never been more important for writers to build an author brand.
What is an author brand? It is simply your promise to readers.
Authors are often uncomfortable with the idea of creating a brand around their writing. Yet, by being part of the social conversation, most are creating some type of brand whether they’re aware of it or not. Unfortunately, if they’re constantly asking readers to “buy their books” on social media, the brand they’re creating is that of a salesperson. Why not be more deliberate about the process and create an author brand that speaks to your audience and allows you to present yourself to the world as the talented creative writer that you are? In today’s crowded book marketplace, taking the time to craft an effective author brand will lead to a more engaged audience and ultimately more book sales.
If readers were asked to describe your author brand in a few words or phrases, what would they say? Do you know? If not, perhaps it’s worth taking some time to find out. Here are five simple steps to help craft an effective author brand:
1. Discover your brand. Explore and define your life-long aspirations, passions and goals as an author. When you start in a place of honesty, you will build a brand that is genuine and resonates with readers. Think of this part of the process like writing a mission statement for your writing career.
2. Ask hard questions. What makes your work compelling? What differentiates you and your writing in today’s book marketplace? How do readers perceive you and your work? Is that perception aligned with the perception you desire? Do the books you create and the way you market them help you cultivate your author brand and achieve your goals? How do you add value to your community of fans? This step needs to be interactive. Ask your readers for feedback. Figure out how your current readers see you. Then, decide if their feedback is aligned with the brand you want to build. If it is…awesome, the next steps are easier. If it is not, it’s time to stop and figure out why.
3. Create a plan. Map out a clear, long-term road map to help you reach your goals. This should include the types of books you will write (not necessarily just genre, specific qualities are important too), when you will release them, the way you will share them with the world, and the types of actions you will take on a regular basis to demonstrate the qualities and values for which you wish to be known. This step is all about creating a voice for your author brand. It’s about articulating what you’ve learned through steps 1 and 2. You’ve gathered information, now you need to put into a plan. One part of that plan is a road map for your career. The second part of that plan is a promotional content strategy that let’s the world know about your author brand.
4. Choose your platforms. Now that you’ve discovered and articulated your brand, it’s time to figure out the best places to communicate your brand’s message. Research social and real-world communication channels that target your audience. For example, if you write business books, you need to spend time in targeted LinkedIn group. If you write genre fiction, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest are great places to explore. If you write young adult, you need to find a way to reach your audience on Instagram and YouTube. Execute your content plan, which you developed in Step 3, across the platforms that your audience uses. By the way, Bublish can help you share your stories and build your brand on all these platforms, so I hope you’ll check us out.
5. Commit to long-term execution of your plan. Building an effective author brand takes a long time. It requires commitment and consistency. Don’t give up on your road map just because you’re not seeing results quickly. In fact, let’s be clear, you will NOT see results quickly. However, if you craft a solid plan and commit to it, you will achieve your goals as an author.
I wish you the best of luck on the journey. Enjoy it. Embrace it. Being an author is hard work, but it’s an amazing gift.
Kathy Meis is the founder and CEO of Bublish, the world’s first complete publishing solution with integrated brand-building and discoverability features. With more than 25 years of experience in the media and publishing industries, she has served in a wide variety of editorial and management positions at some of the industry’s leading media companies, including CBS and Forbes, Inc. She is a founding partner of PubSmart, a publishing conference in Charleston, South Carolina, as well as a professional writer, editor, and ghostwriter. Kathy speaks and blogs regularly on the subject of book promotion, author branding, social marketing, and discoverability. She has appeared at many conferences, including Book Expo America, Women in Media, GrubSteet, PubSmart, and IndieRecon.

Awesome tips, Kathy! Thank you.

Are you focused on building your author’s brand? What tip/s from Kathy will you incorporate into your brand building?

 

Writer quote for today:

“All writing problems are psychological problems. Blocks usually stem from the fear of being judged. If you imagine the world listening, you’ll never write a line. That’s why privacy is so important. You should write first drafts as if they will never be shown to anyone.” — Erica Jong

 

 

 

Kudos, Complimentary Tickets And Print Book News


kudos

Good Morning Creatives!  I want you to join me in sending kudos out to my two granddaughters and their dance troupe-Dancers Be Like. They have auditions Saturday for America’s Got Talent. Break a record,  my dancers!

If you are an author looking for agents for your manuscripts, I happened upon  a great article over at womenfictionwriters here:

https://womensfictionwriters.wordpress.com/2015/09/29/10-literary-agents-seeking-womens-fiction-now-8-query-tips-by-chuck-sambuchino/

Here’s a treat for those of you in the Chicago-land area. Tomorrow, (November 7th from 6pm),”The Transformation Showcase” headed by C. Street, one of my LinkedIn connects, is offering two complimentary tickets to see their Performance. I’m not able to attend because my great-granddaughter is celebrating her two-year old milestone:)  Anyhow, I was given permission to pass the invite on to other women.

It’s all about sharing the love over here, y’all 🙂

The showcase focuses on fighting body shaming and building self-esteem by celebrating, primarily women of color, who set out to become their own SuperMe, regardless of size, shape or body type. If you’re free this Saturday (November 7th from 1-6pm), and would be interested in attending,  you can e-mail info@transformationshowcase.com, and let them know you were offered two complimentary tickets by  C. Street and they’ll leave them at roll call.

This news from the pages of The Web Writers Spotlight should bring a smile: Despite earlier predictions that e-books would overtake print by 2015, digital sales have instead slowed sharply and the tune has changed. Now analysts predict the print industry will “thrive” over the coming five years.

Bamidele Onibalusi  of writersincharge just published 50 websites that pay $50 + for Articles:

http://www.writersincharge.com/sites-that-pay-writers-50-per-article/

My book update~ the first  book coaching session went well. Linda Ellis Eastman (publisher) took on coaching yours truly and I’m totally blown away by how down to earth she is. Her affirming voice and real coaching expertise, immediately put me at ease.. She truly walks the talk and I have my fingers crossed that the next session goes well.

Your writer’s quote for today:

A writer, I think, is someone who pays attention to the world.
Anything you’d like to share with u today, please speak on that!
My lesson learned from social media interactions this week~ Stand in your truths and never waver under intimidation. Shine a  ‘kindness’ light onto yourself and heal from within when faced with harsh critics and acts of hate filled rhetoric. And continue the journey. . . C.F.

 

 

You’ve Published Your Book~ Now What’s Your Next Step?


book-icons-icon-colorful-background-vector-illustration-44619959Happy Saturday, writers and authors! This thought occurred to me; now that I’m in with a traditional publisher and set to become a published author, how am I going to place my book in front of buyers?

How many times have we heard that writing the book is only half the battle and that the hard part is when Marketing and actually selling comes into play?  Once your book is written and finally published, the next and obvious step would be to find buyers to purchase your lil darlings and that can be a daunting experience.

Those seasoned authors among you are probably going; “Why don’t  newbie authors start spreading their book news sooner!?” Okay, we get it. But, better late than never, right?

While doing research on the how to of advertising our pearls to the world’s readers and buyers, I came across interesting places to advertise books, whether you are a newbie or seasoned author who went the way of traditional or Indie publishing.

book-store-23191589Let’s not forgo the usual suspects in getting your book noticed~ Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Good-reads, blog tours and setting up your author’s page on Amazon.com.

My amazon author’s page for A Life Toward Authenticity, an eBook that I self published in 2012 is here: https://www.amazon.com/author/clarafreeman

I was blessed to receive a publishing scholarship in September toward the publication of Unleash Your Pearls, my new self-help guide for women on the path to living their best lives. I’m so excited to bring this resource to women-worldwide!

If you’re at that precarious stage of book completion or manuscript readiness and searching for places to advertise your darlings, here are a few sites to consider:

www.bookbub.com

I read that bookbub is one of the hardest sites to get on, but do give it a good try.

This site seems to be a favorite from some author comments about their experience.
Blurb Direct Sell  states that it will allow authors to sell any book made with Blurb directly to fans and friends through their own personal storefront.
And they allow you to choose the markup over the base price of your book. The site also allows authors to keep 100% of the profit.
Booklikes is a site that allows you to create your free author’s page.
I loved this comment from LinkedIn member and prolific author, Carolyn Howard Johnson, so I’m re-posting it as the writer’s quote for today! (my LinkedIn tribe/ connections are spot on!)
I hate to be a spoil sport, but I think that paid advertising (which is what advertising is!) is a waste of money, especially when authors can get publicity (read that free!) on many of the sites they might normally advertise on. I like Tania’s idea of an author’s page for FREE. How about writing articles or taking excerpts and offering them to the bloggers who reach your audience. This kind of thing is the reason I wrote The Frugal Book Promoter. New authors tend to think of “advertising” first, and it probably should be one of the last things they should consider–after they have already made considerable profit from a book that can be dedicated to marketing.
What stage are you at on your book  publishing? What do you think about these sites for advertising your books to potential buyers? Have you other book suggestions? Please share on with us on Clara’s writer’s blog.

 

More Awesome Book News!


Happy Friday, Creatives!

I’m in my season of allowing, and although,I have lots more to accomplish within the space of this awesome writing realm, I don’t feel intimidated or pressured to get stuff done. And yet, when my work comes together, I feel empowered and so grateful to have this wonderful gift .

First up, guys, I’ve sort of put memoir on hold. After forty thousand words, it started to wreck havoc on my emotions. I have to rethink the “deep introspection” required of the memoir writing process.

My poetry chapbook entry to Casey Shay Chapbook Contest had a good run, landing my Lil book,  A Southern Woman’s Confessional,Poems from the soul, on their Quarter-finalist and Semi-finalist lists. Unfortunately, my lil darlings failed to make the top three finalists list. Oh, C’est la vie 🙂

mary-ballard-prize-seal-2015

 Don’t cry for me Argentina! I’m just looking in my rear-view at that slight pang of rejection, as I’m preparing to re-edit the book for another chapbook competition. If anyone knows of traditional publishers in the market for a chapbook of poems from a southern woman’s perspective, have their people call my people:)

In a prior post, I introduced y’all to the African-American Woman Book Publishing Scholarship, where the CEO of Professional Woman Publishing ,  LLC,  offered $2500 book publishing scholarships to 4 women of color.

Well, I’m excited to announce that I am one of their scholarship recipients. Yea Buddy!!

 

I’m preparing for the 5 conference calls in mid October with the CEO, Linda Ellis Eastman, where we’ll discuss my vision for my new book, which will receive all the benefits that the scholarship covers and then some. Did I mention how thrilled I am?!

My new book project, tentatively titled, Unleash Your Pearls, A Woman’s Guide To Empowering Her Authentic Truths, supersedes any anticipated vision for my work that I’ve ever imagined in 4 decades of scratches and scribbles, hits and misses, confirmations and surprises. My passion for writing is a gift that continues to give and I love that my purpose platform remains solid.

Y’all already know (she says in her authentic voice )I’m gonna be like a sponge in our private coaching sessions, soaking up awesome pearls of book writing/publishing knowledge, to aid my purpose mission that offers every woman, one of the very best resource guides available for living a life of purpose and authenticity.  I’m going to be busy like a happily buzzing bee, preparing to introduce Unleash Your Pearls to the world.

Of course, I will keep everyone informed of the book’s progress.
Today’s author quote clearly had me in mind, because, initially I was hesitant to inquire about the  scholarship information.  But, that’s a  whole ‘nother post, people:)
“Stepping outside your comfort zone to reach out can have tremendous payoffs. Whether you are building your network of media contacts, writing an opinion piece for a newspaper or blog, arranging a meeting with your local Congressman, or engaged in a media blitz around your latest paper, you’ll generate ripples that can lead to surprising and gratifying results.” — Nancy Baron, author of Escape from the Ivory Tower