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Shades Of Romance -

Ella Curry

These Women Know Online Marketing

Tyora Moody

Paulette Harper

Multi-Cultural Literary Magazine


Debra Owsley


Dr. Cannon Arrington’s mission is to help people in need. But when his ex fiancée re enters his life after twelve years, he has a new mission. Never let her get away again. Yasmine Dubose never stopped loving Cannon. Instead, she learned to live without him, guarding her heart in the process. However, when they are brought together to plan a wedding for their best friends, Yasmine is faced with the challenge of following her heart this time around or risk losing the only man she’s ever loved. Candace Shaw - Author of fun flirty and sexy comptemporary romance

Widowed and officially retired, EUGEENA PATTERSON throws herself into organizing the neighborhood association. This presents a great opportunity to re-connect with old friends and get to know new neighbors like recently widowed Amos Jones, that is until Eugeena stumbles upon her estranged neighbor’s dead body. Eugeena’s daughter is fingered as a prime suspect, but where is she? Determined to find her missing daughter, Eugeena and Amos sort through a list of neighbors with shady or unknown backgrounds. The more she searches, the more Eugeena becomes unsure about this neighborhood association idea. Someone closer than Eugeena thinks, wants to keep it that way.

Tyora Moody - Soul-Searching Suspense

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Volume 2, Issue 5 Calendar Letters To the Editor Advertising

In This Issue: IN EVERY ISSUE Note From The Editor - 5 5 Things To Do This Winter - 9 5 Things To Motivate Your Writing - 23 Simple Promotions - 28 Businesses Helping Writers - 38

Non Fiction Author - 6 LaTara V. Ham - Ying

Ella Curry Creations - 10 Article - 17 Online Marketing by Dr. Linda Beed Simply Said Reading - 19 Accessories SORMAG Promotions - 24 Tywebbin Creations LLC - 29 WNL Virtually Blog Tours - 34

Contributors Dr. Linda F. Beed is an author, educator, speaker and performing artist. Visit her online at: and Pictures in this issue: Blue Digital Background by dream designs - 9 Typing On Laptop by Nutdanai Apikhomboonwaroot – 17

Ads In This Issue Only One For Me by Candace Shaw - 2 Deep Fried Trouble by Tyora Moody - 2 Beyond Paradise by Kathleen Mix -4 The 228 Legacy byJennifer J. Chow - 4 The Realest Ever by Keith Thomas Walker - 33 Colorful Covers - 40


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Even the deepest love needs an air supply... Dive shop manager Marina Hernandez is carrying a heavy load as she tries to save the family business. On one shoulder rides a bucket of red ink. On the other, her father’s age-old cultural belief that women belong in the kitchen. Now that a cutthroat competitor has pushed her to the brink of bankruptcy, any chance she'll ever win her father’s respect is fading fast. The last thing she can afford right now is the complication of a tempting man. After years of building his practice, pediatrician Brett Sutherland has changed his focus. He seeks a more well-rounded life, including a woman who'll devote herself to caring for a family. Workaholics need not apply. Then he signs up for scuba lessons, and Marina's luminous eyes and spirited personality turn his neat, logical plan upside down. Brett's dazzling looks heat her blood, and his compassionate nature makes her yearn to build her own life - but not if it means letting the business collapse. A little harmless flirtation couldn't hurt, though. Yet with every kiss, she's stretched thinner between the promise of Brett's love and her father's expectations. Until a critical decision pushes them both to the breaking point... Three generations in an all-female Taiwanese family living near Los Angeles in 1980 are each guarding personal secrets. Grandmother Silk finds out that she has breast cancer, as daughter Lisa loses her job, while pre-teen granddaughter Abbey struggles with a school bully. When Silk’s mysterious past comes out—revealing a shocking historical event that left her widowed—the truth forces the family to reconnect emotionally and battle their problems together. A novel of cultural identity and long-standing secrets, The 228 Legacy weaves together multigenerational viewpoints, showing how heritage and history can influence individual behavior and family bonds. Jennifer J. Chow, a Chinese-American, married into the Taiwanese culture. The 228 Legacy was inspired by the family stories she heard after viewing photos of a two-million-person human chain commemorating 228. She has traveled multiple times to Taiwan and visited places dedicated to the incident. Her experience with the elderly comes from a gerontology specialization at Cornell University and her geriatric social work experience. You can visit her online at

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It’s our anniversary. When I created SORMAG, I honestly hoped somebody with Note From The Editor stop by the website and check it out. I wasn’t really thinking into the future. I just wanted to make it through the first week with somebody other than my mother reading it. When you create a website, the scary part is getting Books visitors. How do you get visitors, whose going LaShaunda Is to stop, will they like it, will they come back. Reading That’s want you want, you want them to come back. I made it my business to find out how to get visitors to stop by the site and check out what I just created. Who knew that 13 years later people would still be stopping by. I love SORMAG and its readers. It has been a true blessing in my life. I have met so many writers, some of which I'm very happy to call friends. I’ve learned so much about the craft of writing, and the business of writing. I created a business by sharing my passion for books. I love the idea of introducing readers to books because I love books so much I want others to feel the same way. I want them to find a book that keeps them up at night and they want to share the book with other people. That has been the mission of SORMAG since day one, introducing books and their authors to readers. I want to thank you for helping SORMAG make it to 13 years. Because without readers there is no SORMAG. I’d be writing for myself and I’m thankful I’m not writing for myself. I'm grateful, you enjoy the magazine. For all of you on the path to publication and who are thinking this will never happen, believe dreams do come true. It will, it can, you just have to work on it and don’t quit. I'm a living testimony - This is my dream realized, a magazine of my own. I hope you enjoy this issue of SORMAG Digtial, which features the ladies you need to be working with for your online marketing. I’d like to hear what you thought of this issue. Drop me a line See ya on the net, LaShaunda C. Hoffman Editor/Publisher of SORMAG

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LaTara V. Ham-Ying Christian Non-Fiction

LaTara V. Ham-Ying is a lifestyle Success Strategist and national speaker who helps entrepreneurs step into emotional freedom, gain new perspective on their personal and business mission, and live fearlessly designed lifestyles. What inspired your book? I was inspired to write Faith in Action: The Power of Using Your Measure because I noticed a trend among Kingdom believers. I saw that they believed in faith but really did not get it. The Word tells us that faith without works is dead and I think that for many, the concept of working out faith has become foreign in this age of Declare and Decree among believers. Declaring and decreeing is fine but if you are not doing the faith-in-action work necessary to get towards your goal, then the words you speak are all in vain. I struggled with the declare and decree fad because something was missing from that equation; but I felt like in my own life so much was missing. The blessings I desired, the life I wanted, the goals I kept reaching for that never seemed to fruition. I thought maybe I was missing something with the declare and decree method. So I took it to God and He led me to the book of Joshua. As I read each page of the story of Joshua and the Israelites battling for the Promised Land, three words stuck out again and again: Faith, Obedience, and Power. It take faith to move God but obedience is a key component in doing so. When I say obedient I mean right from the place where you are NOW! It is about using your measure. Even faith the size of a mustard moves mountains; or at least that is what Jesus says. When we obediently use our faith, there is power in that. Power enough to ask God to cause the sun to stand still (Joshua 10). Faith in Action was inspired by the countless people who want God to bless but fail to activate the power of faith because they do not really get it. In this book the reader will meet Joshua, the woman with the issue of blood, and others in a new way. It will not be business as usual.

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What would you like readers to take away from your book? I want people to be inspired and motivated to “do faith” and not just believe in faith. It is not about how much faith you have but about actually using your measure with a power that will cause miracles at every turn. If it was possible for Joshua, it can be possible for us. It is about applying faith with an obedient love that cause God to take supernatural action in ways we never dreamed; but Jesus said, if we simply keep God first. What did you learn about yourself in terms of your strong points and weak points while writing this book? WOW! Heavy question. I think I learned how to apply faith in my own life. I struggled writing the book because I was not sure how people would respond to it. It does not look like other books, read like other books, and flow like other books. It is based on a truth that some are just not ready to handle but need to hear. As I wrote each page, I thought about my own faith walk as I cried over the page, prayed for people to be receptive, and fought with God about putting this book out there for others. Through writing the book I saw that I was strong in my willingness to simply let go and let God; but weak in my belief that faith, like what I witnessed through reading about Joshua and the others faith in action power players, could actually work in my life. Our theme for this month is ONLINE MARKETING, what online marketing have you found works well for you? Relationship building by being transparent and authentic. This is a trust generation and if they do not trust you, they will not buy from you. What God has shown me is that success for anyone in business (and yes, authors…your book is a business), is that we have to build a community that trust us. When we build the community, they will tell others about us and support our efforts, not just once, but again and again. What advice would you offer to someone whose book is about to be released? Get help. Please do not try to publish your book without a team to help you. Had it not been for people rallying around me, I am not sure Faith in Action would even be where it is at this point. What’s the most interesting change in your life as a result of being a published author? The most interesting change has been all the work I have to do to get the message out about the book. This is my second book but I did not do it right the first time. This time I

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am trying to follow all the steps and it is work. What are you reading right now? Jesus, Life Coach by Laurie Beth Jones and all of my philosophy books for school. When I am in school, reading other books is hard. But I always have a good devotion or short read around that I can read in small chunks and chew on all day. How can readers get in contact with you? (mail, email, website) To contact me visit or email me at Oprah always asks, what do you know for sure? I know that faith is the catalyst that causes God to move in ways we never imagine when tied with a love that obediently does what God commands. His yoke truly is easy and His burden light. Anything you'd like to say to the readers of SORMAG? Don’t quit dreaming and believing. If God gave it to you, he will provide all you need to accomplish it. Walk through the doors of opportunity that He has opened for you.

Faith in Action: Using the Power ofYour Measure, helps the reader to see faith in a new light. Faith is more than just believing. It is a necessary component of the Believer’s life that involves preparation in expectation of what is to come. It is in the midst of this preparation as you take action you that God will be glorified as others see your determination to stand on the promises of your Creator. As the reader reads this book, they are encouraged to make faith in action a daily purposeful habit, much like those in the examples, as they flip the pages for more and more enlightenment on the power of using your measure of faith.

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5 Things To Do This Winter Check Out An Exhibit At The Local Museum



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EDC Creations is an award-winning marketing company specializing in marketing books, electronic media, and publicity for entertainment, faith based, corporate, sports and non-profit organizations. EDC develops and implements marketing programs that have a significant impact on consumers and provide measurable results for their clients. EDC offer a pre-publication service that is customizable to any genre or publishing house with a very competitive price, especially when the client has a tight budget. The EDC team strives to create a unique online experience for each of their clients. As the president of EDC Creations, Ella D. Curry’s firm provides public relations services and brand management that will boost their clients success rates and educates the authors on how to turn their passion into lasting lucrative careers in the world of publishing. Dedicated to Curry’s other loves, which include children, literacy and the preservation ofAfrican American history, is the Sankofa Literary Society, which offers authors, artists, reviewers, journalists and book clubs an array of innovative services. Incorporating various media formats, Curry, through the Black Authors Network Radio Show, brings together authors, publishers and community leaders to discuss the issues that are important to our communities locally and on a global scale. Why did you start your business? I started EDC Creations Media Group because I saw a need in the industry in which self-published authors needed to look more business savvy so that they could compete with traditionally published authors. I knew self-published authors needed to come across as polished and ready for the big leagues. In order to educate others that were surely misinformed as I was, I knew I had to help the authors appear just as worthy as their counterparts published by the major houses. What is your business's mission? EDC Creations' mission is to inform, inspire, and engage readers and authors, from around the planet. We hope to combine the loyalty of readers and the talent of our writers into a significant

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cultural force that can expose the world to the works of African American authors and the legacy they so richly seek to share with future generations. We seek to provide authors with a diverse selection of programs to showcase their talents and to assist them in transforming their dream of being published into a reality. Each year thousands of people — educators, concerned parents, community leaders, authors, poets and publishers — devote their time and resources to presenting the reader with great books! However, too many outstanding books do not get the attention and reader support that they deserve. It is our mission to connect readers with these hidden gems and bring them books that will change their lives. As the publisher of Black Pearls Magazine, we seek to uplift outstanding literary publications and its authors. We assist new, emerging, and established authors to reach a wider international literary audience. This is achieved through sharing their stories across a variety of mediums: online, in print, through e-campaigns, live events and more. What services do you provide for online marketing? EDC Creations coaches each client on how to capitalize on what they already have in place. Be that a tight focus group to sell their first books to or advice on how to use their every day careers as a platform to showcase the books. The most important thing that EDC Creations does for our clients is bring out their strengths and weaknesses and address both in the most productive manner. We take the vision of our clients and chart the course to turn it into a reality. Additionally, we offer services in: * Web 3.0 Online Publicity Generation * Marketing Strategy Creation * Corporate Identity Creation * Branding & Book Coaching Programs Tell us about The Black Author Network, Black Pearl’s Magazine and Sankofa Society? The Black Author Network (BAN) is a weekly online radio show that features authors and literary leaders three times per week to give the readers a blast of knowledge, wisdom, and empowerment. Our platform based on positive self-image and empowerment. We are dedicated to promoting the advancement of multicultural, diverse books in all aspects of business and social networking. Using author interviews as the theme for each show, book lovers get a first-hand look at the “behind the book” news, as the authors and host, Ella Curry, share the storyline of new book releases. We respect our readers’ intelligence and strive to deliver shows and books that enrich their lives. We come to the readers each week

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to invoke dialogues on increasing literacy for future generations, to enlighten the community on great books, and to empower our readers with the Gift of Knowledge! The Sankofa Literary Society consists of authors, librarians, 80 established bloggers, 30 nurses, 15 independent bookstores, 2 online bookstores, 45 reviewing bookclubs and 4 social networks, sponsored by EDC Creations Media Group. The SLS has over 2,700 members online and offline in total, with 877 of those members coming from bookclubs or established reading groups. We're actively reviewing upcoming books in all genres including non-fiction, young adult, and children, religious and paranormal genres. Our written reviews are posted to online book retailers, on Facebook and by sending an announcement to EDC Creations 165,000 newsletter list. We're actively reviewing upcoming books in all genres including non-fiction, young adult, and children, religious and paranormal genres. Our reviews come in the form of a quarterly "100 Top Books Award" and recommended reading list. We would like for anyone who joins SLS to develop and/or have a voice. Voice is so important for writers, poets, authors, and for us as African Americans who have been so long denied, and still are not given opportunities to speak our heartfelt truths. I believe this is why so many African Americans have turned to self-publishing–not only for the financial freedom, but also the most celebrated artistic freedom. All within the Sankofa Literary will be nurtured, cultivated, and supported along with the writers who join and participate. Our theme for this month is ONLINE MARKETING, what online marketing have you found works well for authors? Online marketing success is based on how serious the author is about having their story told, plain and simple. If the author is not going to be front and center in the campaign, it's going to be a hard road. If the author is serious about the campaign, has the funds to see it through and is willing to network with their potential readers, the sky is the limit! Here are a few simple steps: 1. Sit down and structure a sound publicity plan and marketing budget. 2. Look at your plan and break down the steps it takes to make it happen. 3. Create dynamic relationships with the target audience BEFORE you need them. 4. Sell the messages within your book and not just the synopsis of the book. 5. Create a strong presence online that will follow you to offline events and signings. 6. Your brand should stand for something. Use your author platform to attract readers.

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What advice would you offer to someone whose book is about to be released? Your books need a unique campaign behind it to make it stand out. Find the ONE thing that means the most to you and the ONE message that stands out in the book and sell it! Readers should be influenced by the value your book will offer them. Stand on this platform and embrace the feedback good or bad. Never, ever, lower your standards to sell a book! Use a diverse selection of tools and networks to reach the readers. Announce the release of the book in audio, video and through popular apps on the social media networks. Reach out to your close network of followers and recruit about 20 YOUbassadors—people who will help to promote your book in their network. Run contests and hold giveaways on the social media networks to capture the attention of your followers. Most importantly, be visible and vocal in the areas your target audience frequents the most. What five mistakes do you see authors doing with their online marketing? Most of the authors I see online have clearly taken coaching classes or they are watching the reaction of readers to other authors, because I don’t see as many mistakes as I saw a few years back. The biggest mistake I see with authors marketing online is overcommunicating by sharing too much personal information. I see alot of totally irrelevant and inappropriate content shared with readers. Readers view authors as celebrities and rock stars! Sometimes this perception is ruined by the “true colors” being presented daily. Here are a few mistakes I see in online marketing: 1. Expecting to be an overnight success and whining in public about other authors who are rich and famous. Complaining about the lack of recognitions is not a good look! Fortify your relationship with readers by creating a brand they can trust and respect. Always sharing the dark side of publishing could have an adverse effect on the book sales. 2. Using adjective that are not true and do not fit your work. How are you a bestselling author, with your first book that came out last month? How is your radio show the best radio show on the airwaves when you have only been on air for two weeks? Just be yourself and let your accomplishments speak for themselves. Let your readers lift you up! You would be surprised at how many people will celebrate your growth and eventual success. Realize that in this day and age, it's very easy to spot the influencers and the flossers. 3. I see a lot of authors marketing to a demographic, not a niche. No book is meant for all readers, I’m sorry but it’s a fact. Find the people who are interested in a particular message

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or the specific genre of your book and create a relationship with this audience. For instance, if you are writing a Paranormal Romance, that might not attract all readers, but there are awesome blogs and reading groups dedicated solely to this category of books! 4. I find that authors are so busy trying to tell readers that they have a book that they don’t spend enough time getting to know the followers. On the social media networks, it is better to talk with the readers, than to throw blurbs at them. Ask readers questions; listen to the answers. Discuss the topics that make up your book, in order to capture their attention. Build up a database of followers that will support you book after book. Start with a monthly newsletter that shares your news as well as articles that will add value to the reader’s life. 5. Neglecting their social presence by not being consistent. Authors can’t build a strong brand by taking frequent vacations. Not updating or maintaining their website is another no-no. Facebook profiles are not as secure as your own website. Also, it’s far more professional to operate from your website. It is your control center and should have everything the media or reader would need to find you. What advice would you offer to someone who wants to make a career of writing? Keep your pride, stand by your convictions, by all means, keep giving us that phenomenal literature—but recognize greed is causing the most problems in our society period. Don’t get caught up in the hype. It takes years to build up a loyal following for most authors, you won’t become the next E.L. James or Brenda Jackson overnight. Set realistic goals and continually study the craft of writing. Be proud of your accomplishments and don’t emulate the success of others to the point it’s annoying. Learn to work smarter, not harder. Keep up with technology so that you can use tools to reach more people, with fewer steps. You will appear to be in a thousand places with a few select posting. If you don’t have the savings or a clear plan to making enough money to take care of you and your family, continue to work a 9-to-5. There is NO shame in having a way to support yourself while you write the next top-selling book. What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a business owner? My biggest challenge at the moment is answering all of the emails that come into my organization. Follow-up is one of the most important actions any business owner should perfect. One of my other challenges is getting people outside of African American literary world to realize that I promote books from all races and cultures. I think the titles of my companies are misleading to those outside of the AA community. I’m rebranding my entire company to fix the issue.

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Who was the first author you ever met? When I first started working at Karibu Bookstores, the first author I met in person was Tavis Smiley. He was there promoting The Covenant with Black America. I actually designed the banners for this huge book signing and I still have it today…LOL. What are you reading right now? I read more than one book at a time, because of my work with authors. Right now, I’m reading three books. I’ll share the list below: 1. Twisted Truth (The Seth St. James Series) by Kiffany Dugger 2. From Sagging to Success by Florence M. Howard (children book) 3. The Deadly Rose, An Assassin's Tale by J. M. Lominy (historical thriller) Oprah always asks, what do you know for sure? I know for sure that books written by authors of color will always be around! I know for sure that we have come too far to go back. We will continue to be challenged, but we will continue to share our talents, our stories and our ability to prevail for years to come. We will continue to Give the Gift of Knowledge—by lending valuable insight into the concerns, passions and pressures of our people! What’s next for Ella Curry and EDC Creations Media Group? "What’s next for me, now that is a good question! I'm embarking on an entirely new venture after partnering with a company in London. Black Pearls Magazine is about to become international so it can promote American and international authors. I'm also becoming a motivational speaker to help women learn how to make life/career shifts (i.e. dealing with layoffs, children growing up and leaving home). In the spring of 2015, I plan to publish my own book. It will focus on publishing and marketing for the African American author. I am going to let God guide my path and go where he leads me. I choose to walk the path least taken, knowing that God is with me. Every day of my life is yet one more blessing! I wake up and the spirit takes me on my journey. My daily mission is to give back what has so freely been given to me--choices, the right to dream and the belief that I can do anything in his name. I would like to thank you for giving me this opportunity to share my history, experiences and company with your readers. It was a privilege to be interviewed by such a dynamic organization.

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Tell us how to find you online (website, FB, Twitter, etc). My parent website, EDC Creations has a wealth of information for readers and authors alike. All things EDC can be found there: Authors seeking to have their books showcased to our network can find all of our packages under “Author Services.” I love Facebook and I can be found there almost daily at: If readers are looking for updates on the latest book releases and what’s happening on BAN Radio Show, the place to find me is on Twitter at: @EDC1Creations or

Ella D.Curry is the president and CEO of EDC Creations Media Group. She brings more than 20 years of PR and marketing experience to clients in film, music, publishing and corporate event planning. Her expertise as well as her love for all things literary, and collaborative approach with clients have earned her a reputation as a respected leader in the publishing industry. Ella has enjoyed an extensive tenure in media promotions and book publicity. She started out as a corporate event planner and website developer; later becoming a buyer for the legendary Karibu Book Store chain. Her career now includes services such as blog tour coordinator, book coach, video journalist and literary publicist. Ms. Curry lives in Maryland with daughter and partner. When she's not working, she loves to travel, write short stories, and chatting in Internet groups with her international group of friends. As her entrepreneurial spirit guides the way upward, she continues to involve herself in challenging, life enhancing projects. If you would like more information, you may reach her via email at: or visit the parent website at:

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Online Marketing

Since the inception of the World Wide Web, the world of marketing has grown far beyond what Madison Avenue could have imagined fifty years ago. Marketing is vital to any enterprise. It is also one thing that, regardless the size of your company should not be underestimated. Efficient use of marketing has the potential to grow or stagnate. Online marketing has made it easier than ever to bring your message to the people. That being the case, one must understand that takes work to create the right plan for your product. The first step is to create a market strategy. Look at the synopsis of your book. Ask and honestly answer the questions below. Use the answers to create a data base. Create a second list for friends and acquaintances who will help you get the word out. • Who is my audience? • What are the key talking points of this work? • How do I get the message to the people? You now have a list of those with whom you will begin the campaign. Now you must secure the tools necessary to get the word out to the masses. Do you have: •

Web site (not just social media pages)?

As soon as you tell someone you’re an author, they will ask for your web site information.

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Whichever route you choose, be sure that all the pertinent information is there for the visitor. Make it inviting so that they’ll return and suggest it to others. •

Email marketing system

Spamming through email is a ‘no-no’. Seek a marketing system that fits your budget and take advantage of their tutorials and special offers. •

Presence on social media?

There are a multitude of online social media. Choose what best reaches your market niche. •

Video/Audio/Image account?

People love to see and hear from you. Incorporate video imagining and audio messaging into your campaign. •

Blog or ability to be a guest blogger?

Blogging is another good way to showcase your expertise and lend a hand to others. If that’s not for you, seek opportunities to be a guest blogger. •

A team willing to help you?

Writers write, but they also have to market. Seek a support group of people who are committed to helping you promote your work and your platform. You may be thinking that all of this takes money, and money is what you don’t have. Let go of the negative thinking. Look at what’s in your hand and determine how to use it to your advantage. Lastly, I want to remind you that everything you put online represents you. And, everyone who reads your promotions, blog posts and social media commentary is a potential customer or critic. Dr. Linda F. Beed is an author, educator, speaker and performing artist. Visit her online at: and COMING SOON

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Since December 2006, Debra Owsley took her love for reading along with her hobby and turned it into the reading accessory and consulting business, Simply Said Reading Accessories. Debra works with several major best selling authors, and book stores creating unique gift-marks, book thongs, and creative displays and promoting literacy. She also coaches authors on how to promote and market their book on a budget. Simply Said Reading Accessories offers the best custom gift items in the industry. For EDC Creations, we will always use the Book Thongs as our customer appreciation gifts. For personalized service, quick turn around, and dedication to quality--contact Debra Owsley owner of Simply Said. You won't be disappointed! Ella Curry, President and CEO of EDC Creations Host and Producer of The Black Authors Network Radio "Innovative, cost-effective and consumer-friendly. Taking promotional and marketing items to another level with boldness and a one-of-a kind creativity. Where the competition seeks ideas when theirs grow stale. Simply Gorgeous� - Pat G'Orge Walker, Essence bestselling author of Some What Saved "I have been a big fan of Simply Said Book Thongs from the moment I saw them. Classy, unique and they make great gifts! Deb of Simply Said is a great person to work with. She is timely, inexpensive and gets the job done. I'd work with her any day." - Donna Hill, Essence bestselling author and speaker

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Why did you start your business? Honestly I started this business quite by accident! I am a hair stylist and every year I give my clients a gift as appreciation of their business. We always discuss books we’re reading and most clients read under the dryer. I simply decided to give them bookmarks as a Christmas gift that year. They loved them! Some asked me to make more so they could give as gifts. These were something I only made for myself at that time, just because I loved to read and love quotes. So I put them on a bookmark! What is your business’s mission? For authors, the main goal is to provide you, your book or business with elegant ways to represent your work. To have fans retain your contact information and do this within your budget. The Simply Said Reading Accessories brand is truly your “A” game your Sunday best. When you really want to make an impression, and a lasting “mark”! What services do you provide for online marketing? I help authors build and understand their fan pages.Take a look at their marketing and suggest what they can do better. I am forever talking about books I’m reading.I participate on radio programming, I host blog tours and do giveaways from my various sites. I also coach authors on how to promote and market their book on a budget. Tell us about the book treats you create? The bookmarks I make I call “Gift-marks” because they are more of a keepsake or souvenir, than just the average bookmark. The come in 2 sizes and are made to last. I also make Book Thongs which are bookmarks too but they are more like jewelry for your book! I also do note cards, gift baskets, provide custom work for many authors. I am always coming up with new creations and delicious items for book lovers. I also carry Book Boxes that are gorgeous and filled with everything a book lover could want. Please visit to view the albums. I am always on the look out for things that book lovers could use. So I will also at times have limited pieces of a treasure I found. Our theme for this month is ONLINE MARKETING, what online marketing have you found works well for authors? I really think that social media can bring you more traffic and sales than your site can. Using it to direct people and using it to give calls to action, in real time is one of the very

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best ways of really reaching your audience. It can also be updated more frequently that some websites. Products and services such as Skype, QR codes and YouTube can really help readers with sight and sound. People spend so much time on the net, the develop the “Gold fish syndrome” they swim on by. Something really has to scream out to them to get their attention. I coach my clients by telling them to engage all of the reader’s senses. What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a business owner? Staying fresh and current, seeking out what readers want and how to help authors reach their fans with each new release. I see folks who try to copy my work. They don’t get that I love what I do and it shows. Staying 2 steps ahead can be daunting, but my Simply Said Reading Accessories clients recognize the quality and value of my products. Repeat business is everything. What advice would you offer to someone who wants to make a career of writing? Understand that it’s not as easy as you think. You really must be serious and dedicated to the art. Take classes, research and ask questions. Readers can and will make or break you. What’s next for Debra and Simply Said? I always have something brewing! I am constantly brainstorming my business to keep things fresh and encourage repeat and new business. Right now I am preparing for the Holidays 2013 and I am excited about the offerings. Who was the first author you ever met? Marcia King-Gamble was a client of mine at the salon before I knew who she was! She was also one of the clients who saw the bookmarks and asked me to customized some for her for the Goodie Room at the Romantic Times convention. I had been reading her for years and just never put the two together. She is also the person who told me about the trade shows, book events and different festivals that went on. She introduced me to a whole new world I never knew existed. What are you reading right now? Terry McMillian’s Who Asked You Carl Weber’s Family Business 2 Where did We go Wrong, 1 and 2 by Monica Mathis Stowe Are on my night stand right now. I’ve been pretty busy so I am looking forward to reading these as soon as I get some free time!

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How can readers get in contact with you? (mail, email, website) Debra Owsley Simply Said Reading Accessories Oprah always asks, what do you know for sure? Everyday I get some small gesture or sign that I’m on the right path. Sometimes I just throw things into the universe and let it be. If it’s meant to be I’ll know for sure in some way. I know for sure I have an amazing product and a creative mind that can take me anywhere I want to go. I know you need to be open to receive the clues that are being sent. Anything you'd like to say to the readers of SORMAG? Yes! Please “like” my fan page here I’m sure you’ll like what you see! If you don’t see what you want, please let me create it for you. Also please think of me for your for your Reading Accessories and book treats for yourself and fellow book lovers. If you are an author and would like information on custom work please feel free to reach out to me, I want your business! Please mention you saw this interview from SORMAG Online for a special gift with purchase. There are only a few people I use and highly recommend to my clients for online promotion. SORMAG is one of them. LaShaunda Hoffman. Has been a constant face in the industry for years and her work speaks for it’s self. In 2005 Debra Owsley turned her love for reading and her hobby to support her book habit, into the reading accessory and consulting business, Debra works with several major best selling authors, and book stores creating unique gift-marks, book thongs, creative displays and promoting literacy. She also coaches authors on how to promote and market their book on a budget. Debra never dreamed her two loves would turn into a marketing and promotional business, allowing her to meet authors she has read and admired, working at book events and book festivals selling her treasures. She enjoys meeting other avid readers and book club members. Debra is quoted as saying, “These are my passion marks!” Debra loves to travel to book events and festivals, read, blog, dance, and discuss books with friends over great food.

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5 Things To

5 4 3 2 1

Motivate Your Writing

Take A Writer To Lunch Read The First Chapter OfYour Favorite Book Register For An Online Conference Write Down Your Dreams Take a current event, and write a scene

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SORMAG Promotions SORMAG Promotions is a branch under SORMAG - Shades of Romance Magazine an award winning magazine created by LaShaunda C. Hoffman. SORMAG Promotion is another way for authors to reach readers using email marketing, magazine advertising and blog promotion that is budget friendly for writers and businesess. Why did you start your business? SORMAG actually started as hobby as a way to say thank you to the authors I loved reading. African American romances weren't receiving the promotion they deserved. I wanted to promote authors and their books. I never dreamed it would still be going 13 years ago. When I started I didn’t think about making money. I loved books and talking about books. The money came after I learned more about running a business. That’s why I say start a business doing something you love, because sometimes it takes a while for the money to kick in. What is your business’s mission? SORMAG’s mission is to introduce readers to the right book for them, help promote writers and to help writers on their journey to publication. What services do you provide for online marketing? SORMAG offers free author interviews in SORMAG Digital and on SORMAG’s Blog. For paid marketing we offer: Eblasts to our subscribers and social media followers, which include individual ads and newsletters. Magazine ad space – ¼ page, ½ page and Full page ads. On SORMAG's Blog we offer side bar ads, Book OfThe Day ads, and Sneak Peek ads.

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Tell us about the eblasts you create? We offer individual eblast that are custom created for your book. They feature a book cover, blurb, and link to purchase. Depending on the ad, it can also feature excerpts and author bio/picture. These eblasts go out three times. We also have newsletter eblasts that go out twice a month. One caters to ebooks and the others two cater to books. They each always feature the book cover and depending on which newsletter will include a blurb, author’s website, and link to purchase. Our theme for this month is ONLINE MARKETING, what online marketing have you found works well for authors? I will have to say a website or blog is the best online marketing to have. You want the reader to have a place to visit when they think of you and your book. Social media sites are great to network, but you want to have your own home online. A website or blog is the place to do this. You can capture the readers information and keep in contact with them. They can visit and see what’s going on with you and your books. What advice would you offer to someone whose book is about to be released? Don’t wait until the week the book releases. Start promoting it 3-6 months before it releases, that way the readers are excited to hear about it releasing because you’ve given them advance notice. Waiting to the last minute, sometimes will knock you out of interviews for magazines, radio shows and any other place that schedules their content months in advance. When you get your release date, start setting up your marketing plan and start promoting. What five mistakes do you see authors doing with their online marketing? 1. Is not having a way to capture the readers they meet online or at events. Start a mailing list and ask them to join it. Your mailing list is your gold. This is your way to stay in contact with your readers. 2. Only have Face Book as their contact. Invest in a website. Facebook can go away tomorrow and you will lose all those followers. Always have your home you own.

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3. On social media but not using it to network with their readers. They only post info about their upcoming book. They don’t let their fans, post on their page and they don’t answer comments left on their page. Why have a fan page if you’re not going to communicate with your fans? 4. Waiting to the last minute to promote their book or not promoting it at all. They are too busy working on their next book they don’t have time to promote. Make time to promote, you can’t sell a book if they don’t know it exisits. 5. Thinking all promotion should be free. Online marketers can’t continue promoting you if you don’t support them. This is not a hobby to them, they are in this business to make money just like you. Create a budget for your online marketing and find the places that fit in your budget to help you promote your book. What advice would you offer to someone who wants to make a career of writing? This can be a lonely business, so join writing groups; go to conferences or literary events. Make a few writing friends. These are the people who will understand your crazy world and you won’t feel so alone. What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a business owner? Finding paying customers. I love promoting books, that I have to remind myself that I am in business and I can’t promote everyone for free. If I want to stay in business, I have to find the clients who want to pay for my services. What’s next for LaShaunda and SORMAG? We will be hosting SORMAG’s Online Conference November 2-4. The online conference went on a hiatus after the 2009 conference. This year I decided that I wanted to bring it back, because it is an important part of SORMAG’s mission to help writers on their publishing journey. I’m excited to see what this year will offer. I'm currently working on my first non-fiction book about online promotion, and my first middle grade book about twins with special gifts.

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How can readers get in contact with you? (mail, email, website) You can reach me at – SORMAG – SORMAG’s Blog – LaShaunda’s Blog – SORMAG Fan page – LaShaunda Facebook – Twitter –SORMAG Twitter –LashaundaH Oprah always asks, what do you know for sure? That God is in control. He is there in the good times and the bad times. He knows your deepest desires and he will give them to you if only you trust and believe. Anything you'd like to say to the readers of SORMAG? Thank you for supporting SORMAG and the many authors featured on the website/blog and pages of SORMAG Digital. We appreciate you.

Have you ever attended a conference without leaving your home? Register for SORMAG’s Online Conference for readers and writers. Learn from published authors, network with fellow writers. Pitch your manuscript. Mix and mingle with avid readers. Win a few door prizes and never leave the comforts of your home.

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Simple Promotions Tips to Promote Online

1 Write five blog posts 2 Host a chat on your 3 Facebook Fan Page Donate a prize to 4 an online conference Host a contest to get new 5 readers for your newsletter Create a podcastabout time managment

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Tywebbin Creations LLC Tyora Moody is the author Soul-Searching Suspense novels, Deep Fried Trouble (June 2013), When Memories Fade (April 2013) and When Rain Falls (March 2012). She is the 2013 Urban Literary Awards Debut Author Winner and 2013 Urban Literary Awards Mystery/Thriller/Suspense Winner. Tyora is a member of Sisters in Crime and American Christian Fiction Writers. As a literary-focused entrepreneur, she has assisted countless authors with developing an online presence via her design and marketing company, Tywebbin Creations LLC ( Popular services include virtual book tours, book trailers and book covers. Tywebbin Creations LLC (a subsidiary ofTymm Media) was established in 1999. We offer design and marketing services with our niche being a trusted service in the literary community. At Tywebbin Creations LLC , we patiently work with our clients through the design and marketing process. Clients can expect clear communication and perceptive advice throughout the process. We are committed to creating quality products without “breaking” our client’s budgets. We also enjoy going the extra mile after the completion of a project to assist clients with promotion and future development ideas. Visit us online at OR Why did you start your business? Tywebbin Creations was started in 1999. I did not have a business plan nor was I looking to start a business. Back then, I had been doing web design as a hobby for about two years. An author had been checking out a few of my websites. She asked me if I would build her a website and how much I would charge. That email changed my hobby to a freelance business. From that moment, I have consistently attracted book clubs and authors via word of mouth. For a bookworm and creative person, I feel very blessed to work with the clients that have come to me since ’99.

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What is your business’s mission? At Tywebbin Creations LLC, we patiently work with our clients through the design and marketing process. Clients can expect clear communication and perceptive advice throughout the process. We are committed to creating quality products without “breaking” our client’s budgets. We also enjoy going the extra mile after the completion of a project to assist clients with promotion and future development ideas. What services do you provide for online marketing? While I have been doing websites since 1999, I added new services to Tywebbin Creations in 2009. We started coordinating virtual book tours or blog tours. Since then we do a variety of virtual events like Facebook chats, Twitter chats, social media campaigns and social media management. We also have branched out into multimedia by producing book trailers. Why should an author choose your services? While I work mainly with authors, each author has a different book or product and I believe in finding any unique elements that will help increase the author’s visibility. I don’t consider anything I do completely original, but I do strive to keep up with trends and what’s going on with online marketing. I don’t mind taking risks and using creativity to try something new. If it doesn’t work, then I will step back, evaluate and take the course of action that worked best. Our theme for this month is ONLINE MARKETING, what online marketing have you found works well for authors? Consistency. A lot of people start blogging and then stop after a few months. They may sign-up for various social networks and then vacate the networks for months. To have any type of success with online marketing, you need to be consistently visible. Not visible in the sense that you are an annoying salesperson, but that you are consistent, engaging and resourceful. What advice would you offer to someone whose book is about to be released? First, be sure you have your main home on the web… that would be your website. It doesn’t have to have all the bells and whistles. The simpler the website, the better. You won’t confuse your visitor who has an attention span of a child. The internet has encouraged us

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to want our information super fast. Also, in this day and age of smart phones and tablets, a simplewebsites work best on mobile devices. People don’t think about this, but more than likely someone may click on a link to your website via a social media app. After you have the website set-up with the necessary information about yourself and your books, branch out to social networks. I like to encourage commit to at least two. In my opinion, the top two social networks for an author are Facebook and GoodReads. I recommend giving Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram a spin. What advice would you offer to someone who wants to make a career of writing? Study the craft of writing. Your writing is your main product so it has to shine in the midst of so many other books and authors. Secondly, understand once you are published, you are an official entrepreneur. Writing is a business that requires extensive marketing. If you decide to self-publish, that requires funding for editing, distribution, printing, etc. Do your research on online and offline events. Also be aware of what are the best places to market online. After doing your research, this gives you ideas for your marketing budget. What five mistakes do you see authors doing with their online marketing? 1. They don’t take it seriously. Facebook and other social networks are free, but there is some strategy and timing that requires some thought. Online marketing boils down to exposure. It allows you to be on the same playing field as an author who may have a larger budget. If you are unknown, social media serves as a grassroots platform for you. 2. They concentrate too much on being a salesperson. That’s just really off putting to constantly see someone trying to sell you a product. When you’re new, you may not get the sales, but you are making an impression on a possible reader who may purchase you rbook in the future. 3. Like I said earlier, no consistency. There are ways to manage social media and find some time to engage with readers or literary professionals. You don’t have to be tied to social media all the time, but you should drop-in. 4. Not prepared. The first thing I look for when an author approaches me is there online presence. If there is no website, that’s an alarm to me. How are you directing people to your growing brand of books? I had a PR friend tell me you should consider your

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marketing plan as you write the book. Awesome advice! 5. Not understanding the business. Business ventures should be researched before getting started. Sometimes authors put all their money into getting the book printed and don’t realize the various ways to market. What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a business owner? Time. Now that I’m an author, I have to dedicate the same amount of time to writing as some of my clients. You can’t crank out a $75,000 to 80,000 word book overnight. I write mystery and suspense, so it’s very important to me to cover the details. Just as important is making sure to understand and cover the details of a client’s project. I’ve learned to outsource and hire virtual assistants for areas I can no longer do myself. What’s next for you and your business? I’ve taken quite a turn from the days when I strictly did web design. I don’t do websites as much anymore, but now concentrate on book packaging (book covers, promotional / social media graphics, book trailers) and social media management. Probably today my client projects lean even heavier on the online marketing side. I started in 2012 as a teaching extension ofTywebbin Creations. There will be books, but currently visitors can view podcasts and video-based tutorials on managing your online presence. Who was the first author you ever met? That’s a good question. I believe the first author I met was Tiffany L. Warren at a Faith and Fiction Event in Charlotte. In college, I was exposed to Maya Angelou and Nikki Giovanni when they came to do lectures. What are you reading right now? I’m currently writing a new romantic suspense series that will be driven by one character. I’m going back to read/study books by some authors I haven’t read in a few years. The Kinsey Milhone Alphabet series by Sue Grafton is on my reading list now. I’m currently at D. I have always been interested in books with a female P.I. as the main character.

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How can readers get in contact with you? Readers can contact me via my website at I can be found on Facebook, Youtube and Twitter with the username - tywebbin Oprah always asks, what do you know for sure? That God is real! Anything you'd like to say to the readers of SORMAG? No matter what life sends your way, trust in God’s plan for you and keep it moving!

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WNL Virtually Blog Tours - I can create buzz for your book. Authors, are you looking for a way to get your book in front of a huge, new audience of targeted book buyers? If so, then a virtual book tour is just for you. A virtual book tour is a powerful way to get massive exposure for you and your book. During the time of your tour, you will be interviewed, write guest posts, have your book spotlighted or reviewed at one of the many blogs that are geared toward your book or author’s platform. Why did you start your business? I felt a need in the industry to offer this type of service to aid the authors with marketing and promoting their books. I wanted to help authors build an on-line presence. What is your business’s mission? Connecting authors with readers, one book at a time. What services do you provide for online marketing? I am the owner ofWrite Now Literary Virtual Book Tours. Our job is to create buzz for your book and get you the publicity you need though bloggers and radio interviews. As an author, I know the importance of publicity and marketing. Throughout the years, I have made great connections and friendships with authors and bloggers who will help me promote you and your work. I also provide coaching services for the aspiring author who needs more assistance and direction in the area of publication and marketing. Why should an author choose your services? At WNL, we go the extra mile in securing the maximum amount of exposure for our authors. We try our best to connect authors with different cultures as well as provide them with exceptional customer service.

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Our theme for this month is ONLINE MARKETING, what online marketing have you found works well for authors? I believe an author should have several things that work for them, one being a Virtual Book Tour. Although I can’t guarantee a certain number of sales, I can guarantee plenty of exposure. A Virtual Book Tour includes blogger interviews and radio interviews, which could be a possible increase in sales. What advice would you offer to someone whose book is about to be released? I encourage authors to fervently promote their book months in advance. Take advantage of on-line marketing companies who will assist in bringing their books to readers. Set up reviews, interviews, and any and all opportunities to create the buzz. What advice would you offer to someone who wants to make a career of writing? The advice I would give is to make sure they count the cost of what it will take to write full time. If they have prayed and this is something they feel led to do, move forward. Sometimes our desire to do something overshadows what is practical. Consider the amount of time that would be required, the sacrifices that one is willing to make, and the commitment it will take. What five mistakes do you see authors doing with their online marketing? 1. I have seen authors wait to the last minute to promote their books. 2. One of the things, I’ve noticed is that authors don’t network to build relationships; they are more concerned about someone buying their books. 3. They have no budget or marketing plan in place. When they need to promote, they don’t have the money or any idea of how or what to do. Most of them have no idea about marketing or promoting or what it takes to bring their book in front of readers. 4. As important as on-line presence is, some authors don’t have a website. People will not take an author seriously when they don’t see the author investing in themselves or their business. 5. Authors don’t realize that books are a business. No owner of a business goes into a business without a plan of operation, strategies, or goals that they will need to take the business forward.

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What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a business owner? Because I’ve only been in operation a few years, obtaining the confidence and trust with authors sometimes can be a challenge. Currently, I’m a one-person business, so I have to make sure I don’t over extend myself when it comes to authors booking tours. I want to provide good customer service; therefore, I might not do as many tours as I’d like. What’s next for you and your business? • Expand my in-house team to support and increase our presence so we can reach more authors • Do some webinars on marketing and promoting • Offering other author services that include video production, graphics, and press releases • I’d like to book more tours with other cultures as well Who was the first author you ever met? I believe the first author I met was Christian Fiction author, Wanda Campbell. What are you reading right now? Currently, I’m reading Christian Fiction author Michelle Stimpson’s book, “Stepping Down. “ How can readers get in contact with you? (mail, email, website) Readers can visit my business website: My personal website: Facebook: Twitter: Email:

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Oprah always asks, what do you know for sure? I know for sure that God is alive and blessing my business. I know for sure that I can only do what I do because of Christ. Anything you'd like to say to the readers of SORMAG? Thank you! Thank you, without you, authors have no reason to write. Without authors, I would not be in business. Continue pulling on authors to pen great books and as you put a demand on them, they in turn will pull for my business. Thank you, again.

Beginning her career in 2008, Paulette is an award-winning, bestselling author and the founder ofWNL Coaching and Marketing Services. Along with being an ordained Elder, she is the author of several books and founder ofWrite Now Literary Virtual Book Tours, a service to help promote authors writing Christian works and other non-erotic pieces. As an inspirational and motivational speaker, Elder Paulette’s desire is to empower, influence, and cultivate women to move forward while dealing with issues that hinder women from becoming all they are created to be. Her topics are Biblically sound and pertinent to the needs of today’s women. Paulette is a wife, mother, grandmother, and Bible teacher. Paulette has appeared on numerous radio and television shows. Combining enthusiasm with an energetic speaking style, audiences describe Paulette’s presentation as inspiring, enriching, and encouraging. She is committed to speaking a message that is always uplifting and edifying. As a writing coach, she is the visionary behind her own writing ministry called “Write Now,” a literary program that specializes in coaching aspiring writers in the areas of creativity, development, and publication of Christian books. She provides her listeners with tools, resources, and opportunities to help them succeed in the writing business.

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Businesses Helping Writers EDITORS Allyson M. Deese - Copy Editor Andrea Jackson – Content Editor, Copy Editor Fiction Cindy Matthews – Copy Editor Deatri King-Bey - Developmental Editor Genre(s): General Fiction and Genre fiction (except historical and present tense titles) Point ofView: Unlimited and Limited expert Website: ng-service/ Deesha Philyaw – Content Editor, Copy Editor Erica George – Line Editing Felecia Killings – Content Editor, Developmental Editor Genre: Christian writers Jaime L. Lincoln – Copy Editor Genre (s) All genres

Jessica Tilles - Copy Editor Joy Eckel - Copy Editor Genre (s) all genres except poetry J.R. Scott – Copy Editor Genre (s) Non-fiction writing, business writing, collegiate writing (papers, thesis, etc) All types of fiction with the exception of Urban Fiction Lauren Baratz-Logsted - Copy Editor any kind of fiction for all age groups and many areas of nonfiction Lorraine Elzia – Content Developmental Editor all genres from religious to erotica.


Maurice M. Gray, Jr – Content Editor, Copy Editor, Developmental Editor Christian fiction and nonfiction, mystery, science fiction, mainstream fiction and mainstream nonfiction no erotica or pornography Maxine Thompson – Content Editor, Developmental Editor Genre(s): Christian Fiction to Urban Fiction and street lit

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Patricia Woodside - Copy Editor, Developmental Editor, Line Editing Rhonda Jackson Joseph – Content Editor, Line Editing Genre(s) All genres, as well as non-fiction works. Mostly in the romance and horror genres. Robin Caldwell - Copy Editor, Substantive editor

Book covers Owner, Shani Dowdell Graphic designer Bountifully Blessed Publishing Services Freelance Virtual Assistant Owner, Allyson M. Deese SORMAG Eblasts - Book Promotion Owner, LaShaunda C. Hoffman HELPING TO PROMOTE AUTHORS RAWSISTAZ

Shani Dowdell - Copy Editor fiction books and poetry Shonell Bacon - Copy Editor fiction and non-fiction; genres include romance, ya, sci-fi, fantasy, urban, street, Christian, literary, etc. Non-fiction, academic works (articles for journals in MLA and APA), memoirs, and essays. CLG Entertainment, http://www.clgentertainment

APOOO BOOK CLUB Black Authors Network Literary Talk Show Write The Vision Radio Show African American Literary Book Club

Vanessa Madden - Copy Editor fiction and non-fiction works with the exception EDC Creations of erotica Nia Promotions BUSINESSES All The Buzz WNL Virtual Blog Tours Ty Webbin Creations Owner, Paulette Harper Johnson Worth More than Rubies Productions Do you have a business that helps authors. Send Book Trailers, Websites, and Blogs info to: Owner, Evangelist Cheryl Lacey Donovan

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Would you like to write for SORMAG Digital? Be interviewed by SORMAG Digital Promote your books in SORMAG Digital


SORMAG Digital - Winter 2013 - Online Marketing

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