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Mel Hopkins

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Everything posted by Mel Hopkins

  1. Reason #777 why I rarely write for free - and definitely not on a third-party platform (well except for AALBC.com). Huffington Post's Editor in Chief Lydia Polgreen announced today the contributors platform is now history. You read right. All those Huffpost bloggers, some starting back in 2005, found out today "the HuffPost blogging platform is no more. In its place, Huffpost Opinion and HuffPost personal. Writers will have to pitch ideas to get inches on the platform now. But at least they will be paid for their work. Polgreen also announced they will be hiring staff writers too. Rest of the story can be found on the Huffington Post By Lydia Polgreen If I wanted to hear more of the same programming, I'd watch national network news. But I don't. I want to hear/read diverse thoughts. I want others to challenge and stimulate my thoughts and beliefs . I don't want to get stuck in an echo chamber. So let's hear it for yet another reason, reason #1 we need to maintain our own platforms, share our thoughts and link to each other... RIP HUFF POST CONTRIBUTORS BLOGS.
  2. Brave New World

    And how about Cal-Exit? Rural California decided to break off from the urban part of California to declare its independence. In doing so, they've formed New California which founders hope will eventually achieve statehood Then a small earthquake hit.
  3. @Troy aren't those the words from the publisher of The Mantle? If yes, it seems then those words should remain. It makes a strong statement. If those are your words, then :eek: ....
  4. Academic Marketing & Sales Did you know there are many associations that host about 352,300* conferences and meetings that are attended by professionals who can make purchasing decisions, such as making a wholesale purchases of your book? Conference exhibiting is another way to knock on a backdoor market to reach your readers. If you’re only exhibiting your books at book conventions you’re missing out on quite a few opportunities. Source: MARKETING YOUR BOOKS TO THE ACADEMIC COMMUNITY
  5. When I worked for Penguin USA and G.P. Putnam's Sons - I worked in Academic Marketing & Sales and Special Sales, respectively. Big 5 Trade book publishing houses don't just have A Marketing department, they have several marketing and sales department for children's books, Young Authors, Back List etc... Here's where I'l will post some ideas on ways to distribute your titles beyond bookstores and online retailers such as Amazon. If you think of some please include them too.. Thanks to @Sharon Wilson for reaching out and remind me! For starters: How about writing a grant for your favorite charity that could benefit from your book? This way your charity can purchase your book wholesale and distribute it to the stakeholders. Not only is your book bought, it's also distributed it too!
  6. Ringing out the old year

    @Pioneer1 I did NOT ignore your comment! I didn't respond to it. If you read my remarks in that thread you'll see I was on another tangent. When I did return, my reference was in agreement with Troy's statement -because I had noticed the same in learning. I realized that if I can teach a subject then my comprehension of the subject is solid. By the way, REALLY Pioneer? Hate Black Men? Are you serious?
  7. Actually Troy.....

    @Delano that was a typo... I will go correct it now... @Pioneer1 I don't remember joining in on that discussion between you and Cynique.. I remember your discussion with @Cynique being more nuanced.
  8. Actually Troy.....

    @Delano You can't. Without comprehending a subject you can't explain it. You can only give facts and details.
  9. Actually Troy.....

    "If you can't explain it, you don't know it. If you can't teach it, you need to go back and learn it..."
  10. Strategies

    @Farai Caldwell and all members , Welcome! I've already noticed a change in my behavior when it comes to #ReadingBlack I enjoy reading business, science , metaphysics etc - and prior to this club I would wait for recommendations through feature articles that I read... Now I'm actually searching for the genre and determining if it is written by African-Americans and/or for African-Americans. So if any of our members have published books in the aforementioned genres - please send me (melhopkins (at) theleadstory (dot) net ) an image of the book cover, a summary or book blurb/summary and preferably a buy link I will add it to my website's bookstore and my blog posts, if it's native to the subject. Thank You!
  11. 3. Think Like an Editorial Director - and curate and create News your audience can use. Even if you have one name on your mailing list treat that one person like she represents 1,000 subscribers because she does if we can depend on exponential growth. Sometimes good content could be related to your book's subject matter - especially if you're an expert. Other times you may have to think beyond your book and really know what your customers need. For example, @CDBurns runs a website with the tagline "in-depth sneaker info. http://arch-usa.com/ I haven't sign up for his mailing list but I do follow him and his conversation on disqus. Chris Burns designs,and runs his shoe business but he also has his own publishing arm to the business too. Burns is ahead of the curve. Major Brands are now just realizing that they need a media department. I thought about him when writing this post because just yesterday, he told me about Brooks running shoes and their partnership with Black Girls Run. I'm not a sneaker head but his information appeals to me. This means when I think of sneakers, I remember him. You connecting with your audience through your expertise means they will remember you too.
  12. Are you collecting sales, likes or customers? One thing that soured me on selling books through amazondotcom and even luludotcom was both companies had information on those who purchased my books that I didn't have. Not knowing my customers put me at a disadvantage. It meant that when I had a new book they might like I had to wait until Amazon or lulu got around to telling them. What if I just wanted to keep in touch? I'm a firm believer in KIT Marketing (Keep in Touch Marketing) I also couldn't reach out to them to find out what they liked about my book...( knowing what customers like helps you to create more of it.) \ All this to say; 2. if you haven't already started, It's time to build your own mailing list.
  13. To Care or not to Care

    @Cynique Your post communicates perfectly why I've been rolling my eyes since social media has all but put Oprah on the 2020 Presidential ballot. I''m embarrassed by how we, United States citizens, act as if we're extras in a television show. I'm still waiting for the fall of Rome because so far, I see the entire civilization continuously play out in my newspaper, social media and sometimes television (if I don't have it tuned to some fantasy show). I didn't watch the golden globe award show because I don't watch award shows...but folks being moved by an Oprah speech means we are truly controlled by mythology and storytelling. We fall for the facade of shiny things and really don't look for substance anymore. As much as I write about the benefits of an Obama Administration, I've never fell victim to his narrative. Quiet as kept, I never listened to his speeches either. I read them. This after I learned from a Chicago reporter, who covered him in early years, how Mr. Obama practiced his cadence until he perfected it to stir the audience. Anyway, I see the same in Oprah. She has goals and she achieves them. I admire that in her, period. But like the rest of the players, she has the hero's journey (monomyth) down to a science and people respond emotionally. Like you've written, she's the photo negative of 45*. Oprah was most likely tapped because "they" suspect 45* isn't the beacon for consumer spending. Nothing tanks America's economy faster than us holding onto our purse strings. If folks can't see how easily we're played then we need to revisit all 11 seasons of the X-Files
  14. To Care or not to Care

    @Pioneer1 I didn't forget. I even wrote about it on myspace I called her move "hiding behind the penis"... OMG (It's 2018 and I'm agreeing with Pioneer LOL) You're correct Oprah was absolutely instrumental in his rise in the black community and yes the white community too... "Then he went on tour with Oprah Winfrey, whom he had gotten to know when she interviewed him after his speech at the Democratic National Convention in 2004. " New York Times December 29, 2007 "A Biracial Candidate Walks His Own Fine Line"
  15. Share Your Blog on AALBC.com

    Thank you! A public profile badge. In my iPhone favorites I have the little open book w/ aalbc.com logo whenever I see that logo I think of this website. I'd like that like a "proud member" of aalbc.com and of course it can have a link embedded within that opens a new page displaying my profile over here would be ideal - sort of like a linkedin public profile badge builder for the website .
  16. Kwanzaa 2017-2018


    I celebrated  Kwanzaa (first fruits) 2017-2018 through my thoughts and words.  In answering the phrase Habari gani  I wrote a separate blog post  in response.  It  put me in a positive community-focused frame of mind to start off the year.   

    From my blog on theleadstory.org.   

    Imani: Golden Rule

    Kuumba : The Chosen Ones

    Nia: Reasons

    Ujamaa: Until the Lion Learns

    Ujima: Yes We Can

    Kujichagulia Goal Minds build Gold Mines

    Umoja No Man's Land

  17. Kwanzaa And The New Year.

    I have a feeling many celebrate Kwanzaa but since it's not commercialized we don't hear a lot. For that reason alone I celebrate it by honoring it with my thoughts and words. I did a separate blog post for each day of Kwanzaa. It put me in a positive community-focused frame of mind to start off the year. I did the original post on my melhopkins.com website but I also copied and paste everything to theleadstory.org. Imani: Golden Rule Kuumba : The Chosen Ones Nia: Reasons Ujamaa: Until the Lion Learns Ujima: Yes We Can Kujichagulia Goal Minds build Gold Mines Umoja No Man's Land
  18. Share Your Blog on AALBC.com

    Ok I get 1400 visitors per month on my theleadstory.org and 10,000 visits per month Two searches that are mentioned on semrush - is from the writers events from aalbc and prnewswire... a lot of my blacklinks (see what I did there lol) are from aalbc.com - there's more information relating to aalbc.com and personally I do my best to press the aalbc newsletters each month . I had to move the writers event widget to a separate page because I changed my theme...it's now in MOB News Here's what's weird, I don't even pay a lot of attention to that site but I will from now on. I'm not sure why I get that amount of traffic. One time, it was do to hacking attempts but the visits and visitors seems to be steady and growing... All this to say. @Troy can I have a widget that says my web site: The LeadStory is a proud member of aalbc.com please... : Also I know that 1400 visitors is a not a lot but I'll take it and grow it...
  19. Ringing out the old year

    Happy New Year!!!
  20. @Troy , What's revealed in this book relates more to courage. In the examples you mentioned, the risk taker has already made the decision . There's nothing to fear when you're in control. For example, no one forced you to bungee jump, skydive or perform thousand of somersaults. you made the decision. But God forbid, you ended up a quadriplegic (God forbid) - now your no longer in control of your body - so how you continue through life displays your ability to be fearless/fearful. That's the book's motif - how we deal with the hand we're dealt. There are people who take those risk but crushed by the results. They display their fear in various ways that appear normal to the onlooker. It looks like self-sabotage. For example, a man who had one bad heartbreak but is now fearful to let himself be open to love is a display of fear. There are people who appear fearless but have a safety net to count on when walking the tight rope. Fear is very nuanced but both Greene and Fiddy tackle as many scenarios to make the point and arrive at the books intriguing conclusion. Even though I took a lot of notes I may want to revisit it again. (smile) You and Greene appear to agree. He said that he wants to punch folks in the face that say fear is innate. He seems to believe its a only a starting point or a fleeting emotion that anyone can overcome.
  21. It is exactly what you posted up there... being courageous and the many ways we fail ourselves by being fearful. But wait I wrote a review when I finished reading it. From 2011 - https://melhopkins.com/2011/04/11/the-50th-law-thou-shall-not-fear-2/ Since finishing The 50th Law by Curtis “50-Cent” Jackson and Robert Greene, I’ve been feeling some type of way. If I had to identify the feeling, it would be an emotion ranging from vindication as in “I knew it” to one of frustration as in “when did I forget what I knew?” I'm jumping ahead of myself. The 50th Law is a multi-genre book. Its 304 pages (although my copy only had 291 pages) is divided up into genres of 1/4 history, 1/4 leadership, 1/4 self-help, and 1/4 memoir. If I were to summarize the content, it would be "Fearless-to-Free to be You and Me.” The latter being the title from the 70s soundtrack, telecast, and movement, which sought to do away with traditional gender roles. Almost 40 years later, the message resurfaces. Although it doesn’t promote gender neutrality, it is just as empowering. The 50th Law seeks to have us embrace our individuality to be the best we can be. This message is driven home by author Robert Greene providing an intimate look into the lives of historical figures and celebrities including 50 Cent. Greene illustrates how these iconoclasts embraced their individuality early on and without apology, which contributed to their professional and personal success. Embracing your individuality seems easy enough, right? It is if you don’t mind separating yourself from the crowd, standing out and apart. If it is easy why would the majority of humans spend their entire lives trying to fit? According to 50-Cent and Robert Greene “Fear” is why we so desperately cling to each other like sheep. And while “Fear” is the usual suspect, it is their answer to the “Fear of What” and the resulting solution that separates their thesis from those of modern-day philosophers. The answer is so thought-provoking it will have other readers “feeling some kind of way” long after they put the book down. I highly recommend “The 50th Law” to those who are ready to break away from “the herd.” Copyright (c) 2011 MH
  22. 1) Sleeping with a D-Man by Mel Hopkins The Princessa by Harriet Rubin The Art of Learning (Read it Twice) by Josh Waitzkin Instant Millionaire by (read it twice) Mark Fischer Transitioning From Employee To Entrepreneur : A Road Map for Aspiring Entrepreneurs : Marvin L. Storm The Art of Profitability by Adrian J. Slywotzky 50th Law by 50 cent and Robert Greene Testament of Solomon by King Solomon Indiscretions by Yolanda Hooks Buick The Footprint of God by Greg Iles Are You There God, It's me Margaret by Judy Blume Just Morgan by Susan Beth Pfeffer
  23. RIchard Murray Creative Table

    Thank you! I really appreciate the exposure since I've decided to keep my books and short stories contained on my website.
  24. RIchard Murray Creative Table

    thank you for Thank you for asking! http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/melhopkins I took first novel out of circulation but you can still find me there
  25. Strategies

    First, this is a new topic so I didn't get notification. @Troy is possible to get a general notification from this forum? Also I do like the idea of proactive campaign -because it trains us in a new behavior rather than trying to break a habit...