“You Can Do It Sis”

Quick story.

I was in the city on this beautiful, warm day, and I wanted to get a pic by the water but I wasn’t sure if I could make that lil jump without getting wet. I was going to say, “that’s okay,” when a young lady behind me says, “you can do it, sis!” I turned around, jumped and made it. This had me thinking about the importance and ease of what it means to support one another. It doesn’t always have to be something grandiose, flowers and sparkles and rainbows. Doesn’t always require us to be present either or taking professional pictures. Nope. Support is simple and requires us to do nothing but go the extra mile for one another. This young woman’s comment blessed my soul, made me smile and gave me the courage to “jump,” and she didn’t have to do it. She could have let me go about my way. She could have shaken her head or said something smart under her breath. She could have easily judged me. Instead, she empowered me. No celebrity status needed, no large crowd around us, no audience, nothing but the hot sun on our faces and the opportunity to get a cute pic because we felt beautiful today, like the weather was. And just like I don’t have to publish this post, I will. I will go the extra mile like someone did for me and return the love.

Whatever you want to do, do it. Don’t worry about what people will think or failure. Let faith lead you. Make the jump. Leap. “You can do it sis/bro!”

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Start a business that is not only dependent on the people you know to be Successful

Tbt. Greenbriar Mall. ATL. Book Signing, 12/22/18.

If you are a new entrepreneur, if you are just publishing your books or starting your own business, I want to congratulate you! I want to tell you; you will do well and go far. I want to tell you; you are brave and beautiful.

But I also want to warn you:

start a business that is not dependent only on the people you know personally to be successful.

One of the best decisions I made in the past 2yrs was to go out and network with people face to face without worrying whether they believed exactly as I did or worrying about what people would think of me.

Only depending on the people who know you personally to support your business can leave you doubtful and broke because there are people who will project their fears and limitations onto you. This means that once you’ve moved beyond those limitations, once you’ve elevated, these people abandon you because you no longer fit within the box they mentally created for you.

‍There’s a meme circulating that says:

This is all the truth. Most of the people who will continuously support you will eventually become like family. They will be all the wonderful people you meet along the way who will root for you harder than anyone you’ve known personally. Social media is cool, but there’s an entire world outside of the internet.

When you are running a business, the people you know, including relatives, are the icing on the cake. They are the ones in your corner cheering you on and going “Yaass, sis yaass,” or “yams bro!” They are the people there to support you no matter what and we all need some of that encouragement! But we also need longevity in our business which can only come from consistent financial support and there are so many people in the world willing to pay you for your knowledge not just like your posts.

Author Tip: Take the time to discover who your book or business is for specifically and target your content to those people. This is called a target audience, and it helps you to focus on the group of people most interested in your content so that your book, product, or service doesn’t stop selling after your family and friends have bought it.

Dear Black Entrepreneur: You Are Enough

I was sitting here drafting a Black History Fun Fact about the first black-owned TV and radio stations but as I read I noticed a disturbing trend. A trend we can still see present today. To start, I was researching WGPR-TV, first black-owned television station in the U.S. and W.E.R.D., first black-owned radio station in the U.S. WGPR-TV was run and operated in Detroit and W.E.R.D. was based in Atlanta. We’ll go deeper into their history in a separate post but both stations became a platform for black artists, from Jazz and Blues musicians to Dr. Martin Luther King Dr. using it to broadcast his sermons and later, Civil Rights announcements. There are two things I noticed associated with each of these companies as the inspiration to today’s post:

  • Jesse Blayton, founder of W.E.R.D., also taught accounting at Atlanta University and tried encouraging young black people to enter the field. He was unsuccessful because the students knew that no white-owned accounting firms would hire them and Blayton’s, the only black-owned firm in the South, was small and had few openings.

 

  • WGPR-TV was successful from my perspective but because it failed to reach a wider audience, it was eventually sold to CBS. WGPR-TV ran from 1975 to 1995 under its black leadership.

With, black-owned businesses, I notice a disturbing mindset among many of my people in the African-American community that success is synonymous with white support and that, without it, we aren’t as successful as we could be. Society has deceived many of us into thinking unless they have included us in the mainstream public eye, we are unsuccessful. I compare it to publishing in the sense that Traditional Publishing is still seen as a more successful route than Independent Publishing. It is still seen as a sign of prosperity to be signed to a publisher than to be your own publisher through the Self-publishing route because of the exposure. Although many Self-Publisher’s are making far more money, unless the Self-Publisher can look like a celebrity, he or she has not made it (whatever that means). This is flawed thinking and causes many to chase the temporary pleasures of money and fame over integrity.

The Oscars is a great example of this and for the record, I admire Spike Lee and Regina King most especially. The talent comprised in these two people is beyond words. However, the black community’s reaction to their Oscar win is a great example of how we do not often see ourselves as being enough. Spike Lee and Regina King are and have always been two powerful artists. What Spike Lee has done with Crooklyn, Four Little Girls, Mo Beta Blues, Do the Right Thing, He Got Game, Malcolm X and more is nothing short of genius work. That Regina King can simultaneously bring to life two characters in Huey and Riley Freeman is nothing short of genius work. Not only did she capture the personas of two little boys but two little black boys. Whether that is Poetic Justice, Boyz N the Hood, Friday, Enemy of the State or Down to Earth, King’s roles are always down to earth. She’s got this skill that allows her to be relatable in any role. She‘s hilarious and you feel she can easily be your sister.

My point here is this: Lee and King did not need to win Oscars for me to recognize their brilliance. Yet, as a community, we champion this as the official ceremony to which we have received a piece of the pie. We have a track record of doing this, in which we do not see ourselves as successful except that we are integrated into mainstream societies expectations of what that success is supposed to look like. Angela Basset does not need an Oscar to be great.

There is nothing wrong with receiving support across all nationalities and nations of people. However, it is important for the black entrepreneur to know and understand that to be young, gifted, and black is also a success by itself and on its own terms.

Thank You

I’ve been away a while so I just wanna say I appreciate those of you who continue to support this blog. Even if you haven’t been around or liked/commented / shared in a while I still appreciate you. I don’t trip about that. I know how busy things can get and in that process, how easy it is to forget but you all are still here and I appreciate that. It is not lost to me how central The PBS Blog has been in helping to advance and shape my career. It wasn’t until I started this blog in 2014 and when I released the first book in The Stella Trilogy in 2015 that people really caught onto my work and that I met many of you and for that I am thankful. (Probably should have done this sooner right? Technically, I’ve had blogs before but none of them as successful as The PBS Blog). I mean, over 2,600 subscribers ya’ll! Sounds good to me. Not nearly as much as some of you but I’ll take it. Even when we make it to 10,000 subscribers, I never want to be so big that I can’t be grateful. I hope to maintain the same level of humility no mater the “numbers.” I’ll still thank you.

Funny thing, so I saw the movie Downsize. Far as action I thought it was pretty boring but putting my entertainment eyes away and using my spiritual eyes I get what the writer was trying to convey. Basically, Paul (Matt Damon) and his wife Audrey (Kristen Wiig) decide to abandon their stressed lives to get small and move to a new downsized community after learning that a scientist discovered how to shrink humans to five inches tall as a solution to overpopulation. So yes, by downsize they literally mean downsize as in “Honey, I Shrunk the Kids!”

I enjoyed the beginning of the movie but as we get into Paul’s life as a small person it loses my interest. I won’t say more because I really could just give away the movie. But from a more spiritual (less entertainment only minded), perspective, I can see the potential. The grass is not always greener on the other side and we should appreciate what we have. (I‘m kinda stretching it though to make my point here on how I appreciate you all…movie was boring…sorry lol).

Anyway, thank you!

p.s. I’ve talked about Grammarly before to help you edit your blog posts but if you use it AND ProwritingAid? Sheesh. Yass. It has gotten rid of plenty of those extra words I use. (Like “that” and “so.”) I can‘t afford a professional editor to edit my every blog post but using Grammarly and ProWritingAid together is a great help. Try it people!


Join me THIS Friday, November 30, 2018 from 12:00-1:00p EST for a book signing and reading from Even Salt Looks Like Sugar at Tall Tales Book Shop in Atlanta. If you’re in the area I would love to have you. Enjoy snacks, laughter, reading, conversation and of course, you can get you a pic or two for the gram 😉 Don’t have this book yet? Get it here for just $2.99 on Amazon and thanks so much!!

(Yes, I am still trying to make this book free eventually and proceeds still go toward helping to fund next year’s poetry contest!)

Don’t forget to visit my author website and sign up for my email list at https://www.yecheilyahysrayl.com/

Blogging and Time

One of the many complaints I hear from new bloggers is concerning time. Blogging takes a lot of time. This is true and time is a very precious thing. How we spend our time is a big deal. What you spend time on today can directly influence your day tomorrow or weeks and months ahead. These days, I don’t have a lot of time to blog and I am not mad about it. I have shifted my perspective on a lot of things, one of them being better managing my time. The PBS Blog is still growing and there are new subscribers daily even if I don‘t blog daily and engagement is decent. My posts are shared daily. All of this from not blogging. I am wasting time just talking about it, actually. I am sitting here writing a blog post when I should be doing laundry.

Define Your Purpose

What are you using your blog for? Do you plan to monetize your blog? In other words, get paid for blogging? Do you intend to keep your content free? Are you using your blog to reach more readers? Build an audience? Are you an author blogger or business blogger? Authors use blogging a bit differently than business bloggers. (I recommend Anne R. Allen’s book The Author Blog: Easy Blogging for Busy Authors) How are you using your blog to your advantage? This question is important because it will determine how you spend your time. Define your purpose for blogging. Don’t just say because you like to write or something vague like that. Be specific. Why did you start a blog and where do you want it to go? One thing I love about Dr. Boyce Watkin’s emails is that he has a clear purpose and everything goes back to that. His thing is Financial Literacy and by the end of every email you know that.

Your Purpose Can Change

Your purpose may also change as you grow and that’s not a bad thing. I didn’t know what I was blogging for when I first started. It took a couple years for me to figure that out and to narrow it down. I am here to connect with readers, black history buffs, to coach new bloggers of the WordPress platform, and to build with Independent Authors. Everything I do on this blog will ultimately go back to one or all of those points. I will either be writing, offering information on black history, giving out blog and writing tips or supporting Indie Authors. Everything I do must be consistent with these things. You may say, “but you didn’t say poetry and certainly you write poetry on this blog!” Truth. I also host a yearly poetry contest and I also didn’t mention inspiration though I am always offering words of encouragement. But this all falls under one of my core points.

Connecting with Readers

Poetry, Short Stories, Creative Writing pieces, Music, Testimony, e.g.

Black History Buffs

Black history articles and little known historical facts

Blog Coaching for New Bloggers of WP Platform

Blog Tips

Supporting Indie Authors

Book Reviews, Promoting / Supporting other Authors, Writing Tips

Build a Schedule

I cannot speak enough about being consistent and having some kind of schedule can help with that. If you think this is unnecessary, then you should probably reevaluate why you’re blogging. Personally, I don’t want to do anything that does not provide some kind of value. If I am incorporating anything in my life whether it’s a blog or a new diet it had better give me a return in some way. For this to happen consistency is necessary and having a schedule can help.

Consistency doesn’t mean every day. Consistency just means regularly. This can be once a week or once a month. (I wouldn’t recommend once a month. I’d try for at least once a week) You don’t have to blog every day but you do have to know what you intend to get out of it. Again, what’s your purpose? Everything will go back to your reason for blogging in the first place. How you blog, your blog schedule, and your content will all come from why you are here. Once you know that, you will be able to build a schedule around this purpose and decide how much time you want to spend blogging. Consistency builds trust, trust builds value and value builds support.

Decide Exactly How Much Time You Want to Spend Blogging

If you are reading this post it probably means you are short on time to blog. You may be too busy to blog regularly but you do want to keep connection with your readers. Once you know why you want to blog and you have created a schedule for your blog, decide how much time you want to actually spend blogging (which should be a part of your schedule). If you only want to spend two hours on your blog just spend two hours on your blog! If it takes longer than two hours to draft a post, save it for another day. We will still be here.

Choose a Time to Offer Support Only

Schedule some time toward supporting other blogs. This is good because if you support others, others will support you even when you are not blogging. Supporting others can take 2 minutes or 30 minutes depending on the kind of support you’re offering but it doesn’t have to be grandiose. Supporting other bloggers can be as simple as liking their new post or sharing it on social media. It can be as complex or as simple as you want it to be. Since we are talking about managing time, you may be thinking:

“But EC, I don’t have time to spend on my own blog and now you’re saying I have to spend time on someone else??”

Firstly, you don’t have to do anything and secondly, I know and I get it. I must also admit that I need to spend more time on other blogs too. I don’t have as much time as I used to for blogging but supporting others, even if it’s just to retweet them, is something I squeeze in. Stephen King said, “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have time to write.” Likewise, if you don’t have time to be supportive of someone else blogs, why should anyone support yours? Choose a time (even if it’s a few minutes) simply to offer your support to someone else’s blog. Don’t mention your own blog and please don’t leave your blog link in their comments. That’s spammy and disingenuous. Make this time specifically about others and not you.

I read something once on Instagram the other day that applies nicely to this: “You don’t build a business. You build people and the people build the business.” I don’t know who said it but I’d like to apply the same to blogging: You don’t build a blog. You serve the people and the people build the blog. This blog is made up of people. I didn’t build this, the people did. YOU did.


Have you grabbed your copy of Even Salt Looks Like Sugar yet? Have you reviewed Even Salt Looks Like Sugar yet? What are you waiting for?? Grab your copy now and leave an honest review when you’ve finished reading! CLICK HERE.

Meet My Sponsorship Friends

Being an Independent Author / Publisher can be expensive. Many self-publishers do not have large teams of people and companies rallying behind them or supporting them financially. And yet, Self-publishers cannot expect to do well without producing quality content. So, today I’d like to introduce you to my new sponsorship packages! Meet The Bookworm, The Readerpillar, The Writerfly, The Editing Eagle, The Love Bug, and Mrs. Professional! They each have their own personalities, pet peeves, and special benefit packages.

The Bookworm

Meet The Bookworm! Bookworm loves to read, sometimes to his detriment. He’ll read anything. He’s especially fond of characters who wear glasses like he does. Just don’t tell him to go to bed early. That really gets under his wormy skin and when he starts to remove his glasses, watch out! That means he’s especially upset. How dare you tell him to stop reading to go to bed. He’s a bookworm!

The Bookworm Sponsorship Includes:

  • 1 signed copy of one of Yecheilyah’s books (your choice of book)
  • Brag Swag: Name or Company Name and Logo on website, event flyers, and social media pages
  • Get listed in The EC Bookstore. Sell your book or product in my online store.

CLICK HERE FOR THE BOOKWORM PACKAGE

The Readerpillar

Meet The Readerpillar! Readerpillar loves to read as well, just not as much as Bookworm. He’s especially silly and loves to laugh. If you can make him laugh while he’s reading you have a friend for life. Just don’t call him a caterpillar. He hates that. When Readerpillar stops smiling, you know that he’s really upset.

The Readerpillar Sponsorship package includes:

  • 2 signed copies of two different books by Yecheilyah (your choice)
  • Brag Swag: Name or Company Name and Logo on website, event flyers, and social media pages.
  • Get listed in The EC Bookstore. Sell your book or product in my online store.
  • Author / Business Spotlight on Yecheilyah’s blog of over 2600 subscribers and over 70k views weekly.

CLICK HERE FOR THE READERPILLAR PACKAGE

The Writerfly

Meet Writerfly! Writerfly’s a sweetheart and enjoys taking pictures of her beautiful wings. One day, she hopes she can be a writerfly model. Just don’t tell her there’s no such thing. She really hates that. When Writerfly stops posing for pictures, you know she’s upset.

The Writerfly Sponsorship package includes:

  • 3 signed copies of three different books by Yecheilyah (your choice)
  • Brag Swag: Name or Company Name and Logo on website, event flyers, and social media pages
  • Get listed in The EC Bookstore. Sell your book or product in my online store.
  • Author / Business Spotlight on Yecheilyah’s blog of over 2600 subscribers and over 70k views weekly
  • Free Book Business Plan Template

CLICK HERE FOR THE WRITERFLY PACKAGE

The Editing Eagle

Meet Editing Eagle! Editing Eagle is a little shy (can’t you tell by his nervous smile? I had to beg for this pic.) but good at his job. He’s laid back and likes to remind all his friends of the importance of proper English. Just don’t use any emojis with him. He hates emojis. When Editing Eagle stops correcting your grammar, you know he’s upset!

The Editing Eagle Sponsorship package includes:

  • 4 signed copies of four different books by Yecheilyah (your choice)
  • Brag Swag: Name or Company Name and Logo on website, event flyers, and social media pages
  • Get listed in The EC Bookstore. Sell your book or product in my online store.
  • Author / Business Spotlight on Yecheilyah’s blog of over 2600 subscribers and over 70k views weekly
  • Free Book Business Plan Template
  • Free Author Media Kit Template

CLICK HERE FOR THE EDITING EAGLE PACKAGE

The Lovebug

Meet Love Bug! Lovebug loves to give! Nothing is too hard or too much for him. He’ll give you the smile off his face if he could. Just remember to forgive one another. Not forgiving each other makes Lovebug really upset. He hates that. When lovebug ignores you, you know you’ve gotten under his round belly!

The Lovebug Sponsorship package includes:

  • 5 signed copies of five different books by Yecheilyah (your choice)
  • Brag Swag: Name or Company Name and Logo on website, event flyers, and social media pages
  • Get listed in The EC Bookstore. Sell your book or product in my online store.
  • Author / Business Spotlight on Yecheilyah’s blog of over 2600 subscribers and over 70k views weekly
  • Free Book Business Plan Template
  • Free Author Media Kit Template
  • Special Email promo of you and your business to my over 170+ email subscribers.

CLICK HERE FOR THE LOVEBUG PACKAGE

Mrs. Professional

Meet Mrs. Professional! Mrs. Professional is neat, tidy, and on time at all times. She’s very organized and dependable. Professional just ask that we all do our best to do things the right way. What can she say? She’s a professional! If you’re late for anything, Mrs. P will give you a really good talking to. That’s when you know you’ve upset her. She’s married to Mr. Professional, they have three professional children and a professional dog.

The Mrs. Professional Sponsorship package includes:

  • The EC Paperback Book Collection (11 Books total, all signed.)
  • Brag Swag: Name or Company Name and Logo on website, event flyers, and social media pages
  • Get listed in The EC Bookstore. Sell your book or product in my online store.
  • Author / Business Spotlight on Yecheilyah’s blog of over 2600 subscribers and over 70k views weekly
  • Free Book Business Plan Template
  • Free Author Media Kit Template
  • Special Email promo of you and your business to my over 170+ email subscribers.
  • Your name and logo on digital products and banners during book signings
  • Complimentary I am Soul Poster

CLICK HERE FOR THE MRS. PROFESSIONAL PACKAGE

3 New Pages on yecheilyahysrayl.com

Help me to make my books even greater by sponsoring my writing business. Your contribution will help me to hire quality editors, custom book cover designers, account for bulk book orders for book signings and more. The benefit of supporting my work is being promoted across my websites and social media, free books and products, and being featured on my banners and products at live events and book signings with the potential for your brand or product to be exposed to celebrities, bookstore owners, black business-owners, and best selling authors. Get listed in my EC Bookstore and keep 100% of your profit. You can also now order my books and services directly from the website. Just visit the Services page for author services and The EC Bookstore for books.


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Tuesday night at Medubookstore at the Greenbriar Mall in ATL. Be sure to stop by and grab your copy of I am Soul by Yecheilyah.

Entrepreneurship isn’t easy so I am thankful to Yah that I’ve sold out my first few books at Medu and have been asked to restock for this fall. I have a lot on my plate so I am also thankful to all of you who have supported and do support my work. Those of you who support this blog and share my posts daily, those of you who beta read for me, and those of you who buy my books. Thank you for your love. I love you back.

p.s. forgive this teacher-looking dress I got on….didn’t have time to get fancy lol

Mark ‘Even Salt Looks Like Sugar’ as ‘to read’ on Goodreads!

Hey guys!

I am releasing a short novel (also known as a novella) this fall. It is a special project I hope to eventually offer for free to you, my loyal readers! Right now it is only 99cents on Amazon and will not go up. Proceeds from the eBook will help to fund my next poetry contest.

Today, I am asking if you could mark the book as ‘to read’ on Goodreads so that others can learn about this new, exciting read. When you mark a book as to read it shows up on your timeline as a book added and works similar to Facebook whereas your Goodreads friends will be able to see the book you added. Every time you add a book, comment on a review to a book, review a book, or update your progress on a book it shows up at the top of your page and others can see it! It’s a FREE way that you can support your Indie Author friends, like me, without spending money. Thanks so much!

CLICK HERE TO MARK

Even Salt Looks Like Sugar as “to read” on Goodreads

CLICK HERE to PRE-ORDER

Even Salt Looks Like Sugar at just 99cents.