Today we’d like to introduce you to Michele Barard.
Michele, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I love reading trashy novels. I have loved them ever since I was a teenager when I took The Other Side of Midnight by Sidney Sheldon from my mom’s nightstand. I still have that book all these years later.
Several years ago, I became a volunteer reviewer for The Urban Book Source. I got free novels in the mail and, in exchange, I wrote reviews for the web site. After a while, I noticed most of my reviews included the comment “Edit, edit, edit.” That’s when I decided to start Urban Book Editor to serve urban writers.
Five years later, I develop, write and edit training programs, coach aspiring writers, edit and publish books in a variety of genres including sci-fi/fantasy, self-help, urban, and spiritual, as well as write and publish my own work.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Anytime you start a business there are challenges. Urban Book Editor has been no exception to that rule. I struggled for a long time to balance a full-time job, three children (sometimes at three different schools) and their activities, and the need to sleep at least a few hours a night with all those activities needed to grow the business like marketing, meeting with clients, and continuing to learn through courses and workshops. There were cash flow issues, challenges wrapping up projects, and difficulty finding help when I had too much work.
The struggles have been worth it though. I have learned so much and I’m on my way to growing the business into a real resource not just for authors but also for coaches who need guidance and help to build the programs and tools they need to serve their audiences.
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Urban Book Editor – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Urban Book Editor LLC started as and is best known for editing manuscripts, but it has evolved into more than that. I have been able to leverage my background in training to develop and write training programs with personal development coaches. In fact, that’s becoming a much larger part of the business and I am so happy to be a part of that because of the kind of support for individuals and communities some of these programs can provide.
I am most proud of the work I’m doing with a non-profit right now. I am working with the founder of an organization that focuses on empowering and educating young women to write and develop her signature program. It is designed to engage inner-city girls with planning for their futures. The program will be impactful because it addresses many concerns young women have ranging from navigating relationships to educational opportunities and career planning and gives them tools and tactics they’ll need to be truly successful in those areas, such as time and money management.
Urban Book Editor is different from other companies in that I personally spend time working with my clients rather than farming out work to other companies. Even when I have freelancers helping with a project, I personally meet with the client and oversee the project. It’s important to me that my clients know I am there to take responsibility and to see the project through to completion.
So, what’s next? Any big plans?
Immediate plans for the company include revamping the web site to reflect the new direction the company is taking. I plan to focus more on program development, offering masterminds to help coaches work through the planning process for their programs and program development services for those clients who need help actually designing and writing the program. I also intend to make a more assertive push into publishing more next year.
- Editing is $.027/word with a $50 minimum. I also offer publishing packages that include editing, layout, and book cover design that must be custom quoted.
- Website: http://www.urbanbookeditor.com
- Phone: (678) 369-3348
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/urbanbookeditor
- Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/urbanbookeditor
- Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/urbanbookeditor
Michele A. Barard