Guest Blog: To the Beat of my Book

Article by: Ashley Robinson

book-headphones“I met this girl when I was nine years old and what I love most she has so much soul. She was old school and I was just a shorty never knew that through my life she’d be there for me”. Lyrics from rapper/actor Common’s “I use to love her” paints a perfect picture of childhood love. The same way lyrics can tell a story, it can also inspire or provoke more depth to an author’s tale.

Both arts seem to always coincide. Songs and books create feelings, evoke thought as well as vivid imagery. It allows imagination that is from a consumer standpoint. What about a business standpoint? How do the two arts collide?

Simple, both artists and authors are faced with giving the fans what they want. This isn’t a easy task! Everyone has an opinion just like everyone has an asshole. Face it you’re not going to please everyone.

You’re music and book isn’t for everyone. You’ll have to zone in on your Target Audience. And even then you can’t please everyone. Also, artists and writers are faced with contracts that may or may not affect royalties (payouts). Also, protecting them from plagiarism of any kind.

Note: Authors using song lyrics in books shouldn’t use more than four bars.

What sets the bar any higher for music and books to coexist is the constant song titles or lyric quotes that become urban book titles such as “Love even when it hurts” the song by  Avant then turned into “Love even if it hurts” the book by Tamicka Higgins. You see it’s easy to intertwine the two.

Music can create books but books can create music as well. Song lyrics are made up of vast vocabulary that is either learned from the street and/or book i.e. Webster’s dictionary and/or published sonnets. Artists must have a decent love of words and wordplay to make words rhyme such as wine and time or to elevate complexity with a metaphor such as “You’re immature like roger so go home!” (lyrics from Wale’s Fuck you ). The double meanings in that metaphor is situational and educational via words. Let me explain! The character Roger from the hit 90’s television series Sister, Sister played by Marques Houston was in a singing group called Immature. The word immature in the context meaning child- like. The television show itself is reminiscent of childhood while the person wale is addressing in the song is a level of childish. Wordplay and meanings both affect music and books. But that’s more for another blog, another day.

About the Writer:

Ashley robinson, born at st. agnes hospital in west Baltimore in October 1990 to teen parents paulette and cedric had a stereotypical upbringing. Once her father was incarcerated ashley was raised by mother paulette whom had the support system of her parents elaine and joseph lyle. While mom was at school and/or work or church Ashley found her love of writing at home with her grandmother whom taught her to write and read cursive at the tender age of five so that she was quiet during the young and the restless. Ashleys love for writing grew and her curiousity peeked for words and story telling. At the age of seven she began crafting short stories and poetry that she often present at school for showing tell. Now as an adult and mother of one she wants nothing more then to have her work as a muse for those who want to follow their passion and needs life lessons learned through the pages. Ashley currently resides in maryland where she pre- school teaches, donates to charties, and working toward more entrepurneal affairs. Her debut novel released august 2016 entitled Imani. The series can be currently found on amazon.

Money Trees Publications

Authoress Ashley Robinson

 

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Keep Good Business Relationships

Hello Readers!

buildingrelationshipsheader

Business relationships are very important.  They are two sided just like any other relationship, require a bit of compromising and are sometimes bridges you don’t want to burn.

If you are in a business, any type of business, eventually you will build relationships. Some business associates you will speak with more, tend to help more, tend to partner with more. No matter what you do in the relationship, it’s business and in the end, you will need each other.

When running a business, it’s always good to have a good relationship with your business associates; keeping your word, being honest, showing integrity and drive, this will make people want to work with you more.

Do things so that your business associates can remember you, want to work with you and will praise you. When in need of a favor they come to you because of your work ethics and the things you’ve done for them. Don’t burn business relationships, especially with people who know a lot of other people. If you’ve done them wrong they will surely tell others to stay away from you and your business.  You would rather they spread your company’s name on positivity rather than negativity.

So keep the business relationships open. Help each other out, extend a hand and watch the foundation of your business relationship grow. You never know what people will do for you and your company when you have a good business relationship!

Your Literary Mentor

-Dominique 

Creating Schedules and List to Stay Organized

Hello Readers!

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Lately, I’ve heard a lot about not having the time to write or that our lives are to hectic to sit somewhere quiet and write. Having a schedule is one way to be able to conquer this task.

Creating a schedule is important to me because I am an organized person. I run my house in an organized way; I like schedules. As an author and business owner, they help me get through my busy days. By sticking to my schedule, I know that I am completing the work that needs to get done and on time.

Many people are not like me. Some people just don’t like schedules and have a hard time sticking to a schedule. Most of the time it is because their minds are constantly on the move and they get things done sporadically rather than in an order.

But if you are someone who needs help with sticking to schedule or getting things in order for your work or business, I have a few tips.

First, make a list. I love lists. Think about the things that need to get done. Write them down in order of importance.

Secondly, keep yourself from veering off of the task at hand. Stick to it! Keep distractions out of your reach. If there are things that tend to get in the way, keep them out of the room or from within your reach. This way you can stick to the job at hand and get things done. Social media alerts need to be put on silent. I have a habit of having Facebook up on my screen in the background while I write. Don’t do this. It’s an easy distraction.

Third, stick to one task at a time. Focus on that one thing. When you complete it, give yourself a pat on the back. You’ve done a good job.

Points to keep in mind:

  • Never give yourself too much work. Give yourself enough to complete those tasks for the day
  • Stay encouraged
  • Remember what’s most important on your schedule
  • When you have completed your list and everything is checked off, you will feel a sense of completion and satisfaction.

Another thing to keep in mind is that many professionals do not like to deal with people who are unorganized. I get tons of emails a day. Forgetting something, although it happens to the best of us, is really not allowed. We have tools around us to keep us informed with everything; smartphones, emails, calendars. There’s no way we should forget anything. Everything that I need to be reminded about is put into my iPhone and iPad schedule.

When you are dealing with others, keep in mind that they want prompt responses, someone whose mind is on the task at hand and not someone who is unorganized. If you don’t deal with things in an organized manor, do it for the professionals that you do business with. There’s nothing like losing a business contact because you weren’t organized enough.

To you it may seem small but to them it could be a deal breaker!

As you work on your next best seller, try to use the tips above to help you stay on track with your work. When you feel you’ve done enough, click save and walk away!

Your Literary Mentor

-Dominique

The ABC’s of Becoming a Writer Part Two

Hello Readers!

abc

 

So Monday, we kicked off the week talking about the ABC’s of Becoming a Writer. We stopped at “L”. Let’s continue!

Make connections

It is so important to build business relationships in this industry. You should make connections everywhere you go. These people should be associates you can work with, and grow from with in your business.

Network

Networking is a little different from making connections. Networking should be done to to socialize amongst your own kind. Presenting your business and brand. Making yourself known.

Open your mind

Be open to try new things. Don’t settle and don’t become complacent. Open yourself up!

Prepare

Preparation is key! Especially when releasing a new book. Always be prepared and ready. Anything can help. Save room for errors.

Quit what doesn’t work

If you have tried something new and it doesn’t work for you…stop. You are wasting your time and this will not help your literary career.

Review

Embrace your book reviews, good or bad. Take them with a grain of salt and move on. Be thankful for the review. Don’t get upset about bad reviews. We are all entitled to our own opinion.

Self-Motivate

There is not going to be someone to hold your hand throughout this business. (Unless you hire me to be your literary mentor.) So you have to be able to self-motivate. Be your number one fan.

Take advantage

When an opportunity presents itself, take advantage. Is this going to work for you and your literary career? Take advantage!

Understand the process

Understand that there is no such thing as an overnight success. We’ve all had to work hard and grind! It may seem like a celebrity became famous out of nowhere but they have put in work somewhere at some time. Understand the process.

Valuable

Know your worth then add tax. Make your statement. Be confident in yourself.  Love what you do and do it for you!

Workshops

Take classes and workshops to help enhance your career. You should always be in a learning mode.

X marks the spot

Find your place in this industry…then build your brand!

Yearn for more

Always yearn for more. Want more. Reach for more. This industry is so big. There’s so much to learn. Always reach higher than the place you are currently in.

Zone

Respect the zone you find yourself in and go hard. When that writing juice begins to flow through your body, don’t let anyone or anything stop you.

I hope you enjoyed these two days of The ABC’s of Becoming a Writer. This is really good info that even veteran authors and writers can use. Stay focused on your goals and never become complacent!

Hire DMP for all of your literary needs. We are now taking clients. 

Your Literary Mentor

-Dominique

Self-Motivate on a Tuesday? Maybe…Maybe not.

Hello Readers!

2d1eda0c36ddde859f03983fe21ce84e--fitness-motivation-mens-army-motivationIt’s Friday! A day where we welcome relaxation without guilt and strive to find peace and happiness from the busy work week. But can we have motivation on a Tuesday? Sure we can. It’s called self-discipline and a change of your mindset.

On Sunday, we are defeated before the week starts. We dread Monday. It’s coming whether we like it or not. Many of us wish for a day between Sunday and Monday but if we got that day, we’d still complain and dread Monday.

You have to be the type of person to be able to motivate yourself on a Tuesday. Monday and Tuesday are the hardest days of the week. Monday is day one for everything. New diet, diet journey, new challenge. It’s always day one. People are hardly starting something on a Wednesday or Thursday. Then there’s Tuesday. Tuesday is still early in the week but by Tuesday we’ve gotten the cobwebs out of out head and we are a little more balanced to get the job done. Then comes hump day that has us in good spirits because we know the weekend is just a few days away. When Thursday hits, we have a new sense of joy and motivation because….tomorrow is Friday.

We have to be the type of business professional that can self-motivate when the day is a struggle. Don’t always look to Friday as the day to start getting excited, getting involved and finding the energy to get things done. We all love Friday but Friday should be a day of celebration. Job well done. Pat on the back. You should see the fruits of your labor from your small weekly goals. (I hope you are setting weekly goals as a business professional. If not you are in trouble.)

So it’s good to be excited about today, Friday. But make sure that you can also self motivate on the days when work isn’t too great, when you don’t feel like going to work, when it’s a Tuesday.

If you can conquer this challenge, you are well on your well to being  a success!

Self-motivation is the key. No one is going to hold your hand in this business. It has to be you! So make sure it’s you!

Become a Descriptive Writer Workshop is coming September 5th. Reserve your spot today It’s only three days. View the details here. 

Your Literary Mentor

-Dominique

What’s on the Next Page?

Hello Readers,

471213-best-ebook-readersI’m the type of reader who is always wondering what’s on the next page. Depending on the author, I can normally figure it out. James Patterson of course, keeps me on my toes unless I’ve read a spoiler.

But from a fiction author to another fiction author keep your readers wondering what’s on the next page. A book shouldn’t be predictable. What’s the point of reading it? Twists and turns can be a turn off to some people but you don’t want to reveal too much too early.

One thing about me, I can’t do romance. Romance with no other sub-genre’s is boring. It’s predictable.  Nothing but love and sex scenes; a woman or man falling for someone they can or can’t have. Predictable.

One thing that keeps readers coming back is the flow of the story, did the author drag the story out (I personally hate those types of books or movies…I’m like END IT ALREADY) Don’t take up too much time describing the scenes, the character…leave a little to the imagination but enough to make it clear to the reader.

Millions and millions of books have been written and published over the years so at some point some things will be predictable.  Put your own twist on your book. Make your readers want more. That includes a Prologue or Epilogue. Cliffhangers are perfect for NOT being predictable. If you ever want to know how to make a book flow and not be predictable, read your favorite author. Take time to read other authors and get a feeling for how books should flow. Being predictable is one way to run your readers away. A reader comes to a book to be entertained, to take them out of their own lives and into someone else’s. So make sure your story is not predictable. Be creative. Make your story, your way of writing stand out.

Get the help you need to write and finish your novel. DMP is now taking clients! Contact us today! 

Your Literary Mentor

-Dominique Watson

Things to Consider when Publishing an Ebook

ebooks_2Ebooks are a thing of today in the literary field. Almost all books are in ebook format. For those seasoned authors who have been publishing books before most of us were even born aren’t too fond of the ebook but understand that times have changed and they must adapt to the change.

For authors and writers who are eager to get their book in ebook format here are a few things to consider.
Ebooks have their own ISBN

If you are interested in getting your book in ebook format you must keep in mind that it has to have its own ISBN. The ISBN is basically the product number. It’s the long number code on the back of the book. This identifies the book to what it is and if someone was to go searching for a book using that ISBN it would direct it to one particular book. Even if the book is in paperback, hardcopy and ebook format the ISBN stands alone for only one format.

If you’ve published your book in paperback and now want it in ebook format you will have to get an ISBN number for it. How can you do that? You can either purchase it yourself or have your publishing company do it for you.
You can convert the book yourself

You do not have to be computer smart to turn your book into an ebook. There are tons of websites and books about ebook format. All you have to do is research the topic and you’ll be doing it on your own in no time. If your publishing company does not offer this then doing it yourself is the way to go. If your publishing company does offer this well then you can skip over this article because there’s no need in you trying to find out how to put an ebook together. When searching for a publishing company finding out if they offer ebook formats is definitely important. Some people no longer buy paperback and only purchase ebook format books. You don’t want to exclude this market. In the world we’re in today you want to cross all of your t’s and dot all of you i’s. You may come across a reader who is interested in your book but only wants to buy the ebook version. If you don’t offer this, you’ve just lost a customer.

Keep in mind when turning your book into an ebook you want to make sure you have the rights to do so. If your book was self published, meaning you did everything yourself and you have the right to the book then you can go ahead and convert your book. But, if you’ve published through a company that retains the rights of your book then you do not have the right to turn your book into an ebook. Companies like this are traditional publishing companies and most P.O.D (Print on Demand) companies. This is why a lot of authors do not publish through P.O.D or Traditional because most of these companies take your rights to the book. You can’t turn it into an ebook unless they say so. You don’t have movie rights unless they say so. You always want to double check your contract because you could be signing over all your rights!

Ebooks can stand alone

The great thing about ebooks is that they can stand alone. They don’t have to be just another format of a book already in paperback or hardcopy. You can release a book in only ebook format and it can sell very well. That’s simply because the ebook market is on high demand right now. If you wanted to bypass all the publishing company drama and want a quick release, ebook is the way to go. With this you can do it all yourself and retain the rights for later publishing it as a paperback or hardcopy.

Many people in the literary field especially publishers make ebooks so difficult but truly they are not. Like any new thing you simply need to learn about it and then do it. I’ve learned a lot through self training. You can too. Don’t be intimated by ebooks and converting them or words like ISBN and retaining rights. Start from the beginning and take the right path. That means, picking the right publishing company, reading over the contract and knowing what’s at stake. Be sure of your decision knowing that you can’t go back until the contract is void. Learn all you can about ebook publishing and be well on your way to having your work in ebook format.

Last note. Remember! To publish on Kindle, iBooks, Nook and Kobo or different ebook formats!

Do you need assistance with finding out which publication path works best for you? Contact DMP today to get the assistance you need!

Your Literary Mentor

-Dominique

www.diamondmpresspublications.com