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Meet Joylynn Ross of Path To Publishing in Las Vegas

Today we’d like to introduce you to Joylynn Ross.

Joylynn, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Becoming the CEO & Founder of Path To Publishing, a full literary service provider for writers, authors, entrepreneurs, and CEOs, has been a long journey–almost two decades to be exact. The journey started with me, first, becoming a reader. One day I got my hands on one of my auntie’s grownup books, which was Black Girl Lost by Donald Goines. It was the first book I’d ever read with main characters that looked like me. With characters that walked, talked, and thought like me. I remember sneaking the book out at night and reading it while lying in bed. I was so deeply enthralled that I felt like I became that black girl who was lost. I remember closing that book upon the final chapter and saying to myself, “One day I’m going to write a book that does that to people . . . that will teleport them into another world.”

From there, I became a writer. In my opinion, from the moment the pen in my hand hit the paper on my desk, I became a writer. Whether it was simply writing the alphabet, I was a writer. Because, after all, it’s about what you end up doing with the alphabet that makes you a writer; the words you string together, forming into sentences, paragraphs, and sometimes prose, that ends up taking the reader on a journey of their own. When you can look at that alphabet and allow your imagination to create an entirely new world, or you can take your existing world, journey, and testimony and somehow transfer it to the written word, you are a writer.

From a writer, I became a published author. But allow me to share my disclaimer: You don’t have to be a writer to become a published author. There are tools, resources, and literary industry professionals who can help you take your thoughts, ideas, systems, strategies, concepts, stories, and testimonies and turn them into a published book or publication. That’s exactly what Path To Publishing provides; the tools, resources, information, and literary industry professionals, aka Literary Companions, to assist those with a message to share, share that message in excellence. So, don’t think for one minute you have to love writing, be passionate about writing, or even simply be a “writer” to become a published author. It just so happens that I was . . . that I am.

When I realized that although writing a book can be a love, passion, hobby, or even a ministry, publishing the book—and selling it—is a business. So, from there I became an authorpreneur. When I realized I could help others achieve the status and title of becoming a published author, I started a literary consulting business, therefore becoming an entrepreneur. I was grateful that God had equipped me with the wisdom, knowledge, understanding, experience, and expertise to help individuals one-on-one, but it wasn’t enough.

I was grateful, but not satisfied. Why? Because there were still so many people I wasn’t able to reach, as helping people “one at a time” is not my mantra, motto, or strategy. My mission, purpose, and assignment are to help the masses. To position myself to help as many people as possible. My measure of success is not helping one person, leaving me hoping, wishing, wanting, and praying that one person carries the torch and goes on to help the next person. It took me a long time to light this torch, so it’s up to me to make sure it’s an eternal flame; that it doesn’t stop burning at just one person.

It was disheartening seeing my fellow authors on social media getting frustrated with book sales, declaring they were about ready to give up the writing thing, put the pen down, and go be a Walmart greater. I knew how that felt. I’d experienced it over the years before realizing and understanding that being an author goes beyond just writing, publishing, and selling a book. It’s a job, and some of the frustration authors experience derives from people publishing a book, becoming a published author, but not knowing their job description; not knowing their full role as an author and not maximizing, optimizing, and monetizing their title as an author.

Part of their struggle is not knowing how to treat their book like a business; not realizing that businesses don’t make money, people do, and, therefore, part of an author’s job description is to make the money needed to sustain the book business. Doing so means not being laser-focused on book sales and royalties. It means using that book as the foundation of a book business; as the foundation to build a literary empire. One accepted those facts for myself, I became a small-business owner, building a team that allowed me to reach more people, as this was a message that was tugging at my spirit to share with others.

I started off with a virtual assistant, interns, independent contractors, and work-for-hires, ultimately hiring my first employee, myself. Remember what I said earlier: Businesses don’t make money, people do. I’d incorporated as a C-Corp, so Uncle Sam needed to see that there was a live body operating, functioning, bringing in the money, so, at the suggestion of my accountant, I hired myself; becoming my first employee. I’m now running a thriving company!

So, as simple of a tip as this may sound: Your first employee should always be yourself. My company is Path To Publishing. I’m an employee of Path To Publishing. I receive a monthly paycheck from the company that I own. I receive a W-2 from the company that I own. My company offers IRAs to its employees. Since I am an employee of my company, I have an IRA. My company purchased and provided me with a company car (it’s on my company’s credit report, not mine). My company can offer fringe benefits for its employees such as gym memberships. Both the car and the gym membership are tax write-offs for me . . . I mean my company.

Do you see where I’m going with this? Do you see where I went with this? Do you see where you can go (if you’re not already there) with this one, small tip?

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It was a journey (going from a writer to the CEO of a company), one in which I hit several potholes, came to many forks in the road, broke down on the side of the road, ran out of gas a few times, and even had the car repossessed—fighting like hell to get it back. But it all led to scaling this business to now be able to help the masses, regardless of where they are on the map. Now that I’m satisfied with.

Path To Publishing – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
On the outside looking in, Path To Publishing may appear to be another literary service provider, helping authors along their literary journey. Helping authors to build their book, build their book business, and create multiple streams of income to sustain their book business. We also help entrepreneurs and CEOs share and validate their expertise using books and publications; our Personal Narrative and Brand Story Companions helping them to get to the core of who they are, why their business exists, and putting it into words. But my, oh my, are we much more than that. We are an empowering literary force!

Some people come to us simply wanting to publish a book. We, indeed, give them what they want. But we also give them what they need, which is empowerment. We empower them to recognize and understand that the content inside their books and publications–the content inside their head–is intellectual property. And although our intellectual property is priceless, we must put a price tag on it if we want to create with it supplemental, residual, passive, and disposable income . . . all leading to generational wealth.

Empowering others often includes giving them the tools to shift their mindset to not just believe, feel, think, and hope they can build a legacy and empire with their books, but for them to KNOW that they can. Far too many of our clients come to us having been told the following words, and those words having taken root in their soul: You can’t make a living as a writer. You can’t make a living as an author. You can’t, you can’t, you can’t . . .”

It’s my job and it’s the Companions’ job to take a shovel and uproot that type of thinking. And I say this to anyone reading this article: Stop allowing others to tell you what you can’t do just because they couldn’t figure out how to do it! If Kim Kardashian can build an empire with her butt, you can damn sure build an empire with your book; with your intellectual property. Because every business starts with a thought, idea, and concept . . . and so does every book.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
The proudest moment of my career so far was when I was able to be honest with myself and say, “Joylynn, you are a ten, but you’re operating like a five.” This moment just happened last week, by the way. Once I finally admitted to myself that I was operating at a five, I then had to ask myself why. Why was I operating at a five when I know I’m a ten? What was keeping me stuck at five? I can’t take all the credit for this epiphany. It was a push and an assignment by my coach/therapist. Nonetheless, I did it. I asked myself the question and I answered it.

My answers to the questions I have to ask myself about myself are two-part. The first part of the answer I deliver because it sounds noble enough, or are words that serve as comfort food to my soul. For example, “I don’t care that I didn’t win the Christmas basket at the PTO raffle. I only bought tickets to support the school.” LIES! The truth is that I love winning, so if I buy raffle tickets to win something, then dang it, I want to win! But acknowledging the truth would be admitting that I didn’t obtain something that I really wanted. So, convincing myself (lying to myself) that I didn’t really want it feels better.

I’ve lied to myself in so many ways; all those lies keeping me operating at a five. But I’m a ten. The real me is a ten! That true me (truth) is a ten that’s buried beneath the lying me (the five). And I’m determined to catch up to myself . . . the real me. But somehow, I’ve managed to tuck the truth safely beneath the lies, so it means having to dig up the lies to get to the truth. And that’s what I’ve been able to do. And this is such a monumental moment in my career because operating at a ten means I won’t be operating in survival mode, but, instead, creative mode. I find that when I’m operating in creative mode, I can help far more people. In survival mode, I’m thinking about how much money I’m bringing in. In creative mode, I’m not thinking about money at all. I’m operating under the standard of putting out as much value as possible.

Pricing:

  • “Act Like an Author, Think Like a Business: Ways to Achieve Financial Literary Success” written by Joylynn M. Ross: $19.95
  • “Act Like an Author, Think Like a Business” Annual Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada: $799.00
  • Literary Consulting: $1,000.00
  • Make Money From Your Book Before It’s Written: $49.00

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