Thursday, October 27, 2005

The Business Of Writing - Meet The Authors

Shirley Hailstock – is the author of seventeen novels and novellas. She has received numerous awards for her work, including the Holt Medallion, the Barclay Gold Award and the Waldenbooks Best-selling Romance Award. Romantic Times awarded her a Career Achievement Award and one of her books made the Top 100 Romances of the 20th Century list.

Shirley's books have appeared on Blackboard and the Library Journal Best Seller Lists. She is a past president of Romance Writers of America.

Lyn Cote - Inspiraional Romance Author

Bettye Griffin - Romance Author

Dara Girard - is the author of How to Bounce WhenYou Want to Shatter: Steps to Resilience in the Writing Life and three novelsfor BET/Arabesque. Her fourth book, Illusive Flame, is scheduled to be releasedMarch 2006. You can visit her website for more articles and linksfor writers.

Vvian Beck - has twenty years of professional experience as a literary agent, editor, bookseller, and freelance writer. She has traveled extensively attending conferences and conducting workshops on many aspects of the publishing industry. Vivian works closely with authors and editors building a productive working relationship to guide your work toward the most appropriate markets. Known for her friendly, professional manner, Vivian combines the personal and hands-on attention that corporate-style agencies cannot offer.

Vivian was formerly a literary agent with the Ferguson Literary Agency and is a member of the Romance Writers of America. She co-founded a RWA chapter where she served three terms as president. Vivian judged in the RWA Golden Heart Contest, and gave agent appointments at the last three RWA national conferences. An avid reader since the age of four when her grandmother taught her to read, Vivian says it is her love of books that drew her to the publishing industry.

Vivian advises you to approach your writing as you would any other profession. Commit to do your very best; your priority should be to get your manuscript read and published.

Sha-Shana Crichton - president, is publishing and entertainment attorney. She counsels artists, authors, musicians, photographers, and other creative entities regarding drafting, and negotiating contracts, copyrights, wills, small business management, permits and employment issues relating to intellectual property, such as work-for-hire and non-competition clauses. Sha-Shana frequently lectures on negotiating publishing contracts and author-editor-agent relationships. She is licensed to practice in New York, New Jersey and the District of Columbia and is a member of the Litigation and Arts, Entertainment and Sports sections of the DC Bar.

Sha-Shana is a graduate of Howard University School of Law (J.D. cum laude); the University of the West Indies (B.A. Hons.); and the Instituto Benjamin de Tudela, Navarra, Spain. She is a former managing editor of the Howard Law Journal and has edited several articles and books, including Constitutional Law: Analysis and Cases by Ziyad Motala and Cyril Ramaphosa (Oxford University Press, 2002). She is the author of Distinguishing Between Direct and Consequential Damages Under New York Law in Breach of Service Contract Cases, Howard Law Journal 2002. Sha-Shana is fluent in Spanish and French.

Stacy Hawkins Adams is the author of "Speak To My Heart," which was selected
as 2004 Best New Multi-Cultural Christian Fiction by Shades Of Romance readers. Her second book, a sequel, will be released in April 2006 and is titled "Nothing But The Right Thing." Stacy is also a journalist and motivational speaker. For more information, stop by her website:

Electa Rome Parks, one of the rising stars in contemporary fiction, is the author of the best-selling novels THE TIES THAT BIND and LOOSE ENDS, which were originally self-published through her own company, Novel Ideal Publishing and Editorial Services Company, a company now dedicated to quality editorial services.

After successfully self-publishing her debut novels, New American Library, a division of Penguin Group, bought the rights. Mrs. Parks signed a three-book deal with New American Library. Her first novel, THE TIES THAT BIND, was re-released in October 2004, and LOOSE ENDS was re-released in November 2004. Both books were immediately chosen as Black Expressions Book Club selections and embraced as Books of the Month by book clubs across the country. A third manuscript, ALMOST DOESN'T COUNT, which was immediately chosen as the main selection for Black Expressions Book Club, was released in August 2005.

Recently, Electa signed her second book deal with New American Library/Penguin Group. Her upcoming project is: LADIES NIGHT OUT (NAL, 2006).

Electa Rome Parks currently lives outside Atlanta, Georgia, with her husband and two children. With a BA degree in marketing and a minor in sociology, she is presently following her true passion and working on a fourth novel.

Sophfronia Scott
, “The Book Sistah”, has over fifteen years of experience as a professional writer. She honed her craft working with some of the best (and toughest) editors in the world during her career at “Time” and “People” magazines.

She published her first novel, “All I Need to Get By” with St. Martin’s Press and Sophfronia was hailed by no less than Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. as potentially “one of the best writers of her generation.”

Sophfronia holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Harvard. She is also a professional life coach, having graduated from Coach U. She has coached dozens of clients to satisfying life and career decisions through her company, Creative Coaching Plans. Sophfronia is a member of the Author’s Guild, the Women’s National Book Association, the International Coach Federation, and the Association of Writers and Writing Programs.

As “The Book Sistah” Sophfronia has created a resource for aspiring authors and offers teleclasses, reports and private coaching to guide writers towards achieving their goals. She may be contacted at or 866-834-3942.

Michelle Monkou - Romance Author

Lori Soard - Romance Author

Michelle Buckley - Bulletproof Soul, (Urban Books, May 2005), is Michelle Buckley's first novel. As a result of her debut writing effort, Black Issues Book Review Magazine included her in the July/August 2005 issue as an up and coming African American author. Her book has also been selected as an “Editor’s Pick” for

In addition to her first novel, in 2000, Michelle was included in the Essence #1 bestseller, Souls of My Sisters (Kensington), a collection of real women's stories. Michelle's essay, Young, Gifted & Dying, was about a friend that died of cancer in her early 30s.

Buckley formerly worked as a reporter, a publicist for Hallmark Cards and a freelance writer for Black Enterprise. When she’s not working on fiction and screenwriting projects, she manages her own Kansas City freelance writing and media relations company, Perfect Pitch Communications.

LaShaunda Hoffman - Publisher of Shades Of RomanceMagazine.

Belinda Williams -

Pam Perry - Vice President, Director Public RelationsMinistry Marketing Solutions, Inc. Creator of Chocolate Pages

Dee Stewart


LynCote said...

Hi, everyone. Busy Day? I'm going to be gone this evening and wanted to post something on first-the topic of getting the call, but for some reason that blog wouldn't open for me. Anyway, my advice on that topic was don't agree to anything on the phone, act happy and pleasant but tell the editor you need to think it over and that you have been talking to an agent. And I would suggest that you have an agent in mind. Agents are more likely to take on a person with a contract pending. If the agent you really want says, no, don't be shy--ask if she'll just do this one contract for you. Probably she'll say yes--easy money, no commitment. And then you can either go looking for another agent and can say that so and so handled your first deal. Again, you're in a much better position all around.

Now about the business of writing--my best advice SAVE ALL RECEIPTS as you spend your years working toward publication. I took 10 years before my first contract. My husband took my expenses off our taxes all those 10 years. If you are actively seeking publication--you prove that by producing ms.'s, submitting, and attending conferences, etc., the IRS will not bother you.

Okay that's what I had to say!
Lyn Cote

Shelia said...

To all the Authors:

Do you handle your own PR or do you have publicists? Why or why not?

Shelia (Badge#16)

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