Urban Book Source
From street corner book peddler to Urban literature’s top grossing publisher, Teri Woods has realized the goal that every independent publisher strives for—independence. With a ten million dollar business, she’s outselling even the major publishing houses when it comes to urban fiction.
Teri may be living a fantasy life that many can only dream of but her success didn’t happen over night. In 1992, True to the Game was penned, but over the next six years it would be rejected by every publisher it was submitted to. Unmotivated, Teri shelved her book and gave up her literary dreams until a friend read and loved her story in 1998. It was then she gained her drive back and decided to self-publish her book. In three years she turned her hand to hand sales into a million dollar business, forming Teri Woods Publishing.
Teri Wood Publishing is responsible for single handily drawing attention to a genre that has been ignored since the likes of Donald Goines and Iceberg Slim. With titles such as B-More Careful, Dutch, Dutch II, Teri Woods Publishing, has sold over 1 million books to date, and dominates many best seller lists.
Currently, Teri is working on publishing new authors, and building The Teri Woods Foundation; a non-profit organization that will donate proceeds from her novels to a Teri Woods Scholarship Fund to provide financial assistance to inner city youth to pursue their career in literature. With an arsenal of books awaiting release in 2006, Teri Woods is as ambitious as she has ever been, and will not be stopped.
UBS: With all of your success, we know the major publishers, agents and editors have been knocking down your door…why have you chosen to stay independent?
Woods: I like to have the editorial creativity to release novels to the public as I see fit. I also have watched my competitors and peers take deals with the majors, just for the advance money but wind up in the hole to these companies. Even independent, I still do more numbers than my peers and competitors signed to the biggest major publishers, so what would be the point for me to write for them when I can write for myself. And finally, I think if you can handle the business of publishing you should stay in business for yourself. Some people can’t deal with the business side of it and are truly meant to be authors.
UBS: How do you locate fresh, talented writers to sign? And what do you look for in a manuscript that makes its way to you?
Woods: I do not locate writers, they contact me. When looking at a manuscript, I look for a strong, interesting story line, even the weakest of writers may have a crazy story to tell. I do a lot of rewriting for the material I release by my authors, which helps with the creativity and the flow of the books my readers enjoy. So, it might need some fine tuning, but at the end of the day, it’s a great story behind the books I chose to publish.
UBS: How do you overcome writers block, if and when you come across it?
Woods: I get writers block all the time and I know the authors that write for my company would say the same thing. You have to break the monotony at times, stop, change the mood or setting, and take time to think about where you’re going and where you want to take a reader. I really try to make sure that any material associated with my name and company doesn’t bore the reader, I think writer’s block can ultimately make a story boring or long and drawn out and lead a reader no where.
UBS: You've been nominated as one of the top 20 most attractive female authors in Urban Fiction by UrbanBookSource.com. How does this make you feel?
Woods: Well, since I’m nine months pregnant and not feeling very attractive, you’ve definitely made my day with your nomination.
UBS: What are your upcoming titles?
Woods: We have the following five books to be released in 2006 and 2007: Double Dose; Deadly Reigns II; Predators; For Gangstas Only; and Deadly Reigns III.
UBS: I know much has changed since your first book was published, how do you feel about the urban fiction genre as of right now?
Woods: I feel really good about what has transpired since True to the Game. I am proud to have laid a blue print in self-publishing. I think that after everything, we as a race of people have been through and for everything we have been denied, it is wonderful to see that there is another way for us to eat and make the quality of life better for ourselves. To know that I am a part of that, validates everything I am and everything I represent to others coming behind me in this book business. I think that we are leaving our mark and telling our stories and that is something that hasn’t really been done for the urban book reading market. I also feel that the urban fiction genre is on the verge of exploding, I think It’s like rap music in the early 80’s when everyone said that it was going nowhere. I think these books will be big, really big. And I also think that the really good books and the crème de la crème of authors will be worth millions and millions of dollars in the very near future. Those major publishers are buying us real cheap right now, but in a minute, they’re going to have to step their weight up and they will because they will want to eat off of what we created and they will want to control the urban market, that’s what I really think.
For more information on Teri Woods, visit: www.teriwoodspublishing.com
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