BRIAN W. SMITH: MADE MAN
Brian W. Smith is the author's author. Not only is he a best-selling writer with 13 novels to his credit, he is also the owner of his own publishing company, Hollygrove Publishing. Most authors never get to this level of ownership of their work or creative control, but Brian has already parlayed his business background into the King position for his writing career.
For the record, this overnight sensation did not happen overnight. Brian has been writing for over 8 years, starting with the semi-autobiographical novel 'Mama's Lies-Daddy's Pain in 2004. He researched the publishing industry early on and consumed every piece of information available on his new interest. He applied the general business principals and savvy he acquired from his Masters of Business Administration degree and from years in corporate America and laid the foundation for his success. Brian didn't bother shopping his manuscript to major publishers. Instead he took the reins of his career and founded Hollygrove Publishing with a handful of investors. In 2006 Mama's Lies-Daddy's Pain was self-published and became an instant hit.From the success of Mama's Lies--Daddy's Pain, Brian transitioned from a self-published author to a full-fledged publishing company. He ultimately signed 6 writers to his company as his career and company took off. So far, Hollygrove published 24 novels, 14 of which were penned by Brian.
At the time Hollygrove was launched, Brian maintained his role in a corporate environment. In 2009, he learned that he would be laid off. Brian was met with considerable resistance when seeking a new employer and concluded "..there are no coincidences; there are no mistakes. This journey was God's way of getting me where I was truly supposed to be. God's way of yanking the safety net out from under me and I haven't worked for anyone since." Brian settled into his destiny as a full time writer and has never looked back. He has been blessed with continued successes. In 2012, Brian received the '2012 Male Author of the Year Award' from the OOSA Reviewers and he has also earned spots on the Dallas Morning News, Amazon, and Black Expressions best sellers lists.
Over the years, Hollygrove has had to respond to economic trends and scaled back the author roster. Brian is currently the only author published by Hollygrove. He notes "Times get stressful but I can honestly tell you I don't think I've ever been happier in my life. I LOVE being my own boss. It's not as safe and stable as having a paycheck every week but God always pulls me through." Hollygrove Publishing sold the rights to Brian's novel "Nina's Got A Secret" to publishing giant Simon & Schuster so.. how about THAT for God's handiwork!! ANY ADVICE FOR UP AND COMING WRITERS?
"I was in the Army for 9 years and in basic training I learned what I now teach.. the 5 Ps. Proper preparation prevents poor performance. In other words, young writers need to do a ton of preparation and be an author in more than just name. Research this cut throat publishing industry, understand industry trends and work on your skill set." WHAT'S YOUR TAKE ON 'PRINT ON DEMAND' BOOK PUBLISHING?
"Print on demand works for some. The appeal, in my opinion, falls under the preparation angle I mentioned. Some are not looking to publish themselves and handle all the responsibility. I personally want my hand in all aspects of anything that has my name on it. Some prefer not to embrace the business side and prefer just the creative." GOING FORWARD:
"I'm starting to explore writing mystery novels. I see a void of black writers in this genre and I am adding this direction to my 'portfolio' of storytelling." Brian is an Adjunct Professor of Creative Writing at a college in the Dallas area. Brian is also the host of the popular internet literary radio show, The Scribe Spot. Several NY Times Best Selling Authors have appeared on his radio show: Sue Grafton, J.A. Jance, Eric Jerome Dickey, and others. It's great to see a positive brother who combines his entrepreneurial spirit with creativity and makes it work. Please support Brian W. Smith on his journey. ONLINE: