>Free Plug Friday.


So far, only one brave soul has taken me up on my “Free Plug Friday” offer. Either no one needs the exposure or everyone is working on their pet projects.
Anywho (yeah, that’s one of my words), today I’d like to present to you one of The Lo Zone regulars, Sheila M. Goss. Sheila is a self-published author who has managed to carve out a space for herself among the many commercial fiction writers in the industry.

Shelia is the author of two literary works, My Invisible Husband and Roses are thorns, Violets are true. Besides writing fiction, she’s also an entertainment writer.

Sheila has been noted for her accomplishments by quite a few organizations. Some of her accomplishments are as follows:

Infini’s Outstanding Author 2006

Literary Divas: The Top 100+ Most Admired African-American Women in Literature


Honorable mention in a New York Times article

2004 OneSwan Productions Female Author of the Year

Three 2003 Shades of Romance Magazine Reader’s Choice Awards

Dallas Morning News Best Sellers List 2003, 2004, & 2005

Roses are thorns, Violets are true is the latest book by Essence Magazine Bestselling Author Shelia M. Goss.

Sibling Rivalry, Betrayal, Resentment…Redemption?

What happens when twin sisters are on opposite ends of the spectrum…

Rose’s ultimate goal is to remain in the spotlight; preferable on the silver screen. To her fans, Rose is sincere, glamorous, and charitable; but to Violet, her twin, she’s a conniving, manipulative person that starves for constant attention. Violet has always been able to forgive her sister’s malicious deeds. Well, that is until Rose does the unthinkable. Can these sisters ever be friends, or will they always stand divided?

To view an excerpt of Sheila’s work please take the links provided below.

Posted by Rich (subbing for Lo)

22 thoughts on “>Free Plug Friday.

  1. >I'm an editor at a major publishing house who reads this blog for its incisive commentary and sharp wit. When guest blogger Rich announced that he would be showcasing writers with Free Plug Friday, I was piqued at the possibility of coming across someone (or someones) with a unique and promising voice.Although I'm pleased to see that The Lo Zone decided to open the doors to others trying to find their place in their perspective fields of interest, Ms. Goss, I'm not sure if you could call your "free plug" an honor or not. I took the time to evaluate not only the sites that applaud your work, but also the excerpts of your work, and I'm finding it difficult to utter the words "good" and "writer" in the same sentence. While I do like the concept of your "twin" story, I would think that your reaching bestseller status was more a function of marketing than talent. I think you would do well to seek out a good editor (better than the one you currently have, as he or she has done you a great disservice by not holding you to a higher standard), and additional coursework in order to honor the craft that has graciously allowed you to receive some level of income. I would also ask that you think about the following: friends who are not willing to tell you the TRUTH about your work are not friends at all, because they don't afford you the opportunity to be honest with yourself before you go public with your work. At the end of the day, you should also be able to judge yourself. As a writer in addition to being an editor, I know when my work measures up, and I also know when I'm looking for someone to co-sign my mediocrity. That is when my true friends step forward and say "no, keep working at it, it's not quite ready." Please do not think that I am being unduly harsh. I just believe that writers should be deserving of the accolades they receive. I know we live in an age where content doesn't always take precedence over bottom line, but I will always stand by the principle that writers and publishers need to rise to a certain bar of excellence, even with stories containing light fare. I'm sure you won't agree with my comments, considering I seem to be among the minority (at least the spoken minority), but I would hope it would at least challenge you to find the level of greatness that God has bestowed upon you. Keep in mind that payment is not always evidence that excellence exists.


  2. >Expected more, thanks for taking the time out to visit my website. I'm aware that every book isn't for everybody, so everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Fortunately for me, I'm with a major publisher who did like both stories and published them. I'm also grateful that a lot of readers (who by the way–aren't my friends…can't depend on friends to buy books…they want them for free…lol) have emailed me to let me know they've enjoyed my stories. I would have emailed you my response directly, however I didn't see a link to do so. If you have any additional comments, feel free to email me directly. MsJayy, thank you for purchasing Roses are thorns. I hope you enjoy the twins story.


  3. >I'm amazed that this 'editor' with a major publisher/ publishing company would have the 'audacity' to provide critiscm without backing up his/her claim with 'examples'. MUCH less, of course, people who 'criticize' often want to be 'anonymous'. Maybe he/she doesn't want to disclose their identity because they are with a major publisher but my thing is…if you are THAT GOOD at what you do & your critique is SO VALID, truthful, objective & just, then whatever you say should be a 'positive' reflection on the company you work for, so why not 'represent' that? If he/she really wanted to assist the author they could have been more specific in the 'so-called' problems with Ms. Goss' books grammatically or went a step further & contacted her directly to explain this. No…instead, this person decides to post anonymously on a blog. Honestly, I've never seen an editor at a major publishing company have SO much time on their hands to be reading blogs much less leave a VERY DETAILED {lengthy) comment on top of 'reviewing' previous reviews & excerpts of Ms. Goss' work. Man if you got all that time, obviously Ms. Goss books, marketing & promotional tactics CAUGHT your attention to even be that involved. As Ms. Goss said, not every book appeals to everyone. And I find it hard to believe that every literary organization or book club that has nominated, bought or reviewed Ms. Goss's books {alot of them were writers & editors in their own right) didn't comment on Ms. Goss' works in that regard & if so not to the level of degree you have. Not to mention, from what I've read over the years about Ms. Goss, she not only had a professional editor on her self-published books but now that she's with a publisher & the books have been re-released, the books have also been RE-EDITED a 3rd time.Lastly, you can comment on the people 'who haven't left a comment' about Ms. Goss who may agree with you from here to doomsday but, being that your post was 'anonymous', technically you're in the same boat as the ones who didn't. IF there are any.


  4. >Fact is she or he is no real editor. Editors have tons of manuscripts to evaluate without logging on to blogs and the like offering critiques. When editors from major publishing house turn down your manuscript oftentimes they don't even offer feedback to those who actually submitted work to them, so, to offer a critique or feedback (if you want to call it that) on a blog forum *smh* makes it so transparent that Anonymous is a disgruntled author with lagging sales and no deal with a major publisher who wishes they had been quick enough to respond and garner the spotlight. Get a life and a real job, Honey.


  5. >Expected More …Shame on you. That was spineless. If those are your opinions why not share them privately. What did you gain? Personally, I blush for you; for your own mediocrity. Clearly, your sense of character is highly underdeveloped. Were that not true, you would have signed your name and allowed us all to draw our own opinions as to your worthiness to be so damning. I have no respect for cowards.


  6. >Isn't it funny how yet another person posting as ANONYMOUS announces that the OTHER ANONYMOUS person isn't an editor because:"Editors have tons of manuscripts to evaluate without logging on to blogs and the like offering critiques. When editors from major publishing house turn down your manuscript oftentimes they don't even offer feedback to those who actually submitted work to them…"Now, it would seem that someone with the authority to define who is and isn't an editor and what editors do and don't have time to do would therefore probably be AN EDITOR!!!! AN EDITOR WHO IS ALSO READING THIS BLOG!!!!It looks like original ANONYMOUS who critiqued Shelia posted at 10:09PM, if the post times are accurate. That means that person was reading this blog at night. So maybe it could have been an editor who goes beyond the manuscripts he or she receives at works and seeks out potential material in non-traditional formats like new media (blogs, etc.). It's not news that a few bloggers have received book deals in the past three years so why wouldn't a smart editor surf blogs?My bottom line is we don't know who anybody is on this blog, especially if they're posting under the infamous ANONYMOUS. If an editor is lurking out there and decides to critique material, it would be nice to hear some positive points, too. Criticism just for criticism's sake does nobody any good.


  7. >In this type of family environment, everyone likes to defend the person who is the recipient of words that come across unkind.However, the fact that Ms. Goss is published is beside the point. I think the real issue is whether her work is worthy of praise or not. You may not have liked "expected more" for their comments, but no one questioned the validity, they just said the comments were mean, for the most part.Move beyond the comments and evaluate the work. Does the work measure up to some of the more heralded writers of today? After reading the excerpts you may very well agree that the work she has presented, does indeed need work.Think about it. There are people on your jobs that are getting paid, who don't deserve their checks. I'm sure there are writers who fall in the same category.Now whether you think Ms. Goss is one of those writers or not, I can't say, but I'm sure her sales will reflect it.


  8. >Ms. Goss was a 'self published' author on a budget. She probably paid for the BEST editor she could afford based on his experience, education & portfolio. Still a self-published author is not going to be able to afford Oprah's editor & even they aren't perfect!In agreement with one of the previous posters, the book was edited 3 times, and the final time, I'm sure,by her publisher's editor for the re-release. Basically what I'm reading by the words of 'expected more' and his/her 'brigade bunch', is you're calling another creditable editor from a publishing house, incompetent! You also come across as saying that that Ms. Goss' fans are idiots to be lured by the 'promotional & marketing' prowess of 1 rising author from Louisiana. Your words come across like you think all these people MISSED some major grammatical /technical concerns in both of her books & that we are slaves to her 'conceptual' plots. Granted, marketing does play a part in attracting buyers but once again the woman was on a budget, what type of 'elaborate' marketing do you think she provided that could entrap so many readers beyond her talent? WOW! I don't know if that's arrogant of you or just plain SAD! Ms. Goss caught the attention of a 'supposed editor' at a major publishing house who was lurking on a blog at night, on his/her lunch or whenever and stirred this person to respond so passionately! Regardless of what you THINK about Ms. Goss' work, it got you talking, it got you thinking & that in itself says alot. I'm sure your rant session was to demean this writer but all you did was bring her MORE ATTENTION! And that seems pretty backward coming from a person who doesn't feel she's worth all the attention!Art is art. And frankly, if 'Bootylicious' by a singer name BEYONCE can be 'considered' an official WORD in the OXFORD English Dictionary, who's to say what is REALLY poignant & prolific? It's a matter of perception. Granted, education, experience & training can make you a specialist or creditable person in your field but you are not the end all to what is talent or not. ASIDE From the 'editorial' aspect, which has NOTHING to do with the actual talent of the writer but more along the lines of the 'format' & look of the product, what is your REAL complaint?The woman is writing contempary romance for crying outloud what in the world did you expect? A dissertation on the underwater metamorphisis of a gnat? Ms. Goss, I hope you're flattered that you've aroused the recourse of such a highly ESTEMED (yet anonymous) person as 'expected more'. I'm sure glad he/she saw fit to regale you of their perception of your work and 'school' you on verbiage. As far as I'm concerned Ms. Goss is not only talented, but her experience as an editor, columnist, writer and her education produced viable products that are very competitive with works of her colleagues & peers. She can only grow better from here.Ms. Goss is very deserving of the accolades she's received. And here's to many more!Since anonymity is the -in- thing for this blog post. I may as well oblige…


  9. >heh, heh, heh…Her next book will be the bomb. Say what you want, but "expected more" touched her, and a few of you as well. Sometimes the best motivation is that which causes you to prove people wrong. So, I say, let the growth process begin.


  10. >Sistah Shelia, Congrats! Remember, any publicity is good publicity and this editor has given u plenty of publicity :-). Keep doing your thang & don't worry about the naysayers, even though they are worried about you.


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