The Power of Networking

“There is a power and unity and strength in networking. I think networking is always relevant. And I think it is particularly relevant for Blacks because of our feeling of isolation.”
Alvin Pouissant, M.D.
(Success Runs in Our Race, 2004), p. 60 by George Fraser

Years ago, women had their quilting bees and sewing circles in order to form communities of support.This was the old way we networked. Somewhere along the line, though, women lost those connections. All types of problems from alcoholism to substance abuse to broken lives replaced the old quilting bees.

However, given the rise of the Internet, networking has taken on a renewed surge of energy.

Traditionally, networking has helped many people of color make business contacts, develop relationships and meet their professional goals. Now, networking is more important than ever. With our present economy, networking can help your business survive and thrive.

Can you join a group which supports your passion? Or even join a women’s or men’s group or a book club?

One Sunday I went to a book signing at Milligan Books (www.milliganbooks.com)where I found out about the Red Hat Society, which is a national organization (http://www.redhatsociety.com) for women.

This chapter, founded by Ruthie Hopkins (co-publisher of Pasadena Journal with her husband, Attorney Joe Hopkins) of http://www.pasadenajournal.com, hails from Pasadena . The women sported red hats and purple outfits and they came in and modeled for those present at the book signing. As a group, they were on their way to a play.

The prerequisite to joining the group was that the women had to be over fifty. The reason they wear purple and red is because after fifty you don’t care what people think. They say that the younger women can join the group, but those that join wear lavender and pink.

Anyhow, the women looked so excited as they modeled their outfits. What I saw in each eye was a gleam of satisfaction, a look of triumph–a stride that said that they had arrived. Childbirth, child rearing and sometimes marriages were behind them. Now they could deal with life on their own terms. And most of all, they were networking.

Networking is very important to building a business or helping you reach your dreams.

Personally, as a writer, I’ve been in a writer’s group since 1992. I also participate in Black Writers on Tour, Recycling Black Dollars, and many online communities such as Black Planet.com. Now I’m a member in a multi-racial group, the Greater Los Angeles Writers’ Society (GLAWS) as well.

As a race of people, we have always used networking. This is that special something which has helped get around the Old Boy System during Jim Crow, and even up to this day. Just look back at the Black Church, the Masons, the fraternities, the sororities, the NAACP, and other groups and see how they broke down the doors of separatism.

Now with the Internet, we have the power of global social networking groups we can join, such as facebook, twitter, myspace, ning groups, Black Planet and others. We are all stronger when we unite.

“I am because We are, and since We are, therefore, I am.”
John Mbuti





Dr. Maxine Thompson Live Internet Radio Shows
This Week’s Guest – Monday, March 27, 2017


Maxine Thompson

Dr. Maxine Thompson,
Publisher, Literary Agent, Author, Host of Internet Show is cross-referenced to her other businesses

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March 27, 2017


9:00 P.M. Eastern Standard Time

This Week’s Guest – Monday, March 27, 2017

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March 27, 2017


March 27, 2017


Dr. Maxine Thompson
Publisher, Author, Founder of

Maxine Thompson Literary and Educational Services
Author of
Affirmations and Essays for Melanoid People



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Book Review: Having Her Say: A Compilation of Articles by and about Dr. Rosie—Time Keeper, Almanac and Score Keeper for Black America

by Dr. Rosie Milligan


Reviewed by Dr. Maxine Thompson


Having Her Say, Dr. Rosie Milligan’s 21st published book, is her much-awaited master piece. Part memoir, part business book, and part clarion call for Black people to wake up, Having Her Say will leave readers not only with something to think about, but with some action steps to take.


Dr. Milligan’s compilation of essays captures pivotal moments in Black History, such as witnessing the first Black President Barack Obama. Moreover, Dr. Milligan’s articles written since 1990, (which seemed controversial at the time,) prophesied the present condition of Black America. For instance, she predicted the plight of Black America and issued a warning that if Blacks did not change their attitude and economic direction, then history would repeat itself and Blacks would return to slavery, but in a more sophisticated form—having an illusion of freedom.


Given the current state of political anxiety and racial tension, these articles also provide a timely answer and direction as to where to go from here. These essays will help you look back to see where we have come from. Furthermore, they will give you a candid look at the historical moments that have impacted the lives of African Americans from the loss of Black businesses in Los Angeles, to the loss of social programs after the Watts riot in 1965, to the loss of civil rights through “the three strike” law. Dr. Milligan’s articles also chronicle the legal cases of Jena 6, and Christopher Dorner, and the LAPD saga. You feel like you’re getting a history lesson as you read the book, which is divided into sections with articles on Finances, Health, Sex, Family responsibilities to each other and Black Economic Empowerment. There are no-holds barred; she calls out ministers and politicians as to their accountability to “Black Folks.”


Find out what went into the making of the woman who boldly named herself, self-appointed “Mayor of South Central Los Angeles.” Follow Dr. Milligan’s journey from the South, where she describes herself as “an ex-cotton picker, a pea picker, a farmer, a hog slopper,” to South Los Angeles, where she has lived and worked in the community as an iconic leader, a publisher, an activist, and an entrepreneur of multiple businesses for the past 5 decades.


Described as a modern-day Harriet Tubman, Dr. Rosie Milligan has led the way to freedom for many Black businesses and writers through her mentoring and Black Writers on Tour conference, which, despite the economy, is celebrating its 21st year. She has been to Black writers what Barry Gordy’s Motown was to talented Black entertainers in the 1960s through 1980s, having published 350 authors through her company, the Professional Publishing House.


Learn within these pages, how like David going up against Goliath, Dr. Milligan has successfully fought the giants of oppression, racism and imperialism against great odds. Through this book, you will find the source of her strength. She has acted as a servant to God and her people throughout her adult life.


Having Her Say is filled with nuggets of wisdom, garnered from a life well-lived. This book is a conduit where readers will get an insight into how Dr. Milligan thinks and feels, as well as a national treasure, which will add to Dr. Milligan’s legacy by touching more lives.


This book should be in every Black person’s library.


Book is available in hardback and paper back at www.drrosie.com, Express Yourself Book Store, 1425 W. Manchester Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90047 323-750-3592


At Online Sellers.

Reviewed by:


Dr. Maxine Thompson
http://www.maxinethompsonbooks.com




Dr. Maxine Thompson Live Internet Radio Shows
This Week’s Guest – Monday, March 20, 2017


Maxine Thompson

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March 20, 2017


9:00 P.M. Eastern Standard Time

This Week’s Guest – Monday, March 20, 2017

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March 20, 2017


March 20, 2017

Shannon Tubbs

Author of

History Is A Part of Me
A Hip Hop Poem of African American Inventors: Educational Activity



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By Dr. Maxine Thompson

http://www.maxinethompson.com

http://www.maxinethompsonbooks.com

Taken from my book, The Hush Hush Secrets of Writing Fiction That Sells

http://amzn.to/1S2yid7

As a fiction writer, you should create strong characters who will hold a reader’s interest for 300-400 pages, whether the character is a good person or a bad person. Who the character is will determine what he wants.

One tip: Make your character act in a courageous way that readers will admire. Test your character. Will he steal $50 if he finds it lying around?

In one of the first writing classes I taught, as an icebreaker, we played a game called ―Two Truths and a Lie.

Each attendee told two truths about himself and one lie. Surprisingly, no one ever guessed the correct answer for any of the participants. For instance, one workshop student said that he had been on Oprah’s show, had six children, and had been to prison. Everyone thought that the statement that he had been to prison was the lie. The truth was the student had been on Oprah’s and had been to prison. He also was a minister with five, not six, children.

Remember, people are full of contradictions. We used the game to show that you can’t judge people by only one aspect of their lives. This not only showed the different parts of people, it showed how a person’s behavior can change over the years.

In writing, the best characters do change and grow or fail to grow. They are also conflicted.

Another exercise we did showed the difference between stereotypes and rounded characters. We used a stereotype that has been used to death in literature and movies, for example—“the red-necked sheriff.”

We shifted the archetype and the situation. What if the character was a white law man with a conscience when a lynching took place during the Depression? Now there’s a story that goes against type and goes against the grain. (Of course, this is reminiscent of the wise father/attorney, Atticus Finch, in Harper Lee’s novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, who defended an innocent Black man in the South during one of the most segregated periods of time, during the Depression.) No wonder this book won a Pulitzer Prize and the movie version won an Academy Award.

Another powerful method for bringing characters to life is The Konstantin Stanislavski acting method. What would you do if you were in that character’s shoes? Act out each character’s role and put yourself in the middle of the story. One exercise was used to show the shifts in power in relationships from scene to scene. This is where you learn to use reversals such as from dominating to dominated.

In the exercise using the Rogerian theory, an attendee was assigned to interview people unlike themselves to understand their characters. This is crucial when you’re writing about a despicable character, such as a child molester (Vladimir Nabokov did this in the famous classic novel, Lolita,) or a serial killer, the infamous character, Hannibal Lecter, (from novel, Silence of the Lambs, by Thomas Harris.)

The Carl Rogers theory was used to develop communications between the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War. Its purpose is to have each person understand someone who holds a polar opposite point of view.

If someone asked you to describe a certain person, how would you do it?

Exercise: Write character sketches and descriptions for five different characters. Be sure to include important details about their history, personality, and context (setting—time and place). Then pick the character who interests you the most, and write a brief scene putting that character into a conflict in an imagined setting (time and place.) The critical part of this is to think, in advance, how you would describe someone to a friend if he asks you what you think of a certain person. This simple method is the single fastest, most “telling” way of getting at character that I know of.

The other key to creating interesting characters with built-in conflict is to bring together characters from different backgrounds. Your characters should come from disparate lifestyles, different classes, different races. How do they connect? Disconnect? Put together your characters and look at ways to derive built-in conflict, such as the old HBO special, ―“Oz,” where men of different backgrounds find themselves in prison.

How to Build Your Character’s Personality

1. If your character applied for a job, what would they put on the
application?

2. What is your character’s religious background?

3. How does your character’s physical appearance affect his self-esteem?

4. What are some of your character’s mannerisms?

5. Is your character urban-bred or country bred?

6. What is your character’s social or economic class?

7. How many family members are there and what birth order was she born in?

8. Where does she live? In a house or in an apartment?

9. What kind of work skills does she have and how does this affect her
role in the story?

10. How is your character different from others and how does that affect
the story? Is your character marginalized by race, sexuality, or ethnicity?

11. Is your character married or single? Any children?

12. Any physical handicaps? Speech impediments? Quirks?

13. What makes your character an outsider from the norm in terms of race, gender, sexual orientation, age, or ability?

14. In what ways is your character conflicted? Does he have a friend, or even a child, from another race, but is part of the Ku Klux Klan?

15. What is your character’s deepest secret?

16. Outline your major scenes and use index cards for each character.

17. Ask yourself, what is the worst thing that can happen to my character?

18. How can it get even worse? I call it the “Throw-everything-but-the-kitchen-sink-at-your character” technique.

19. Who is going to solve this problem? Your hero or heroine or a helper? (Preferably your protagonist will work out his own problems.) In Winston Groom’s novel, Forrest Gump, the main character, Forrest, with his 70 IQ, was such an innocent, loving person, that he became the agent of change, or catalyst character, who changed his love interest, Jenny Curran, for the better and the world around him.

20. Is your narrator just an onlooker, observing the agent of change, the person who affects everyone around him? In The Great Gatsby, the narrator, Nick Carraway, relates the story as he watches the main character, Gatsby, as he self-destructs.

Remember. Characters are what make your story. People might not remember all the plot, but they will remember an intriguing character long after they close the pages of a book.

Tagged with: Creating characters • Creating fictional characters • developing characters •Fiction

Filed under: Books • Character Development • Fiction • Reading • Writers on line • Writing tips




Dr. Maxine Thompson Live Internet Radio Shows
This Week’s Guest – Monday, March 6, 2017


Maxine Thompson

Dr. Maxine Thompson,
Publisher, Literary Agent, Author, Host of Internet Show is cross-referenced to her other businesses

Dr. Maxine ThompsonArtist First Internet Radio


Dr. Maxine invites you to join her this week on her various shows where she will be speaking with some interesting people.


March 6, 2017


9:00 P.M. Eastern Standard Time

This Week’s Guest – Monday, March 6, 2017

Email dj@artistfirst.com with questions for the author or Dr. Maxine Thompson


March 6, 2017


March 6, 2017


Carrie H. Johnson
Author of

Hot Flash



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January 4, 2010

Dr. Maxine Thompson

Author of
Hostage of Lies

Voted A Best Book of 2009

EDC Creations
Black Pearl Magazine

Black Butterfly Press

If you are interested in becoming a guest and/or a sponsor you may visit:

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Dr. Maxine Thompson Live Internet Radio Shows
This Week’s Guest – Monday, February 13, 2017


Maxine Thompson

Dr. Maxine Thompson,
Publisher, Literary Agent, Author, Host of Internet Show is cross-referenced to her other businesses

Dr. Maxine ThompsonArtist First Internet Radio


Dr. Maxine invites you to join her this week on her various shows where she will be speaking with some interesting people.


February 27, 2017


9:00 P.M. Eastern Standard Time

This Week’s Guest – Monday, February 27, 2017

Email dj@artistfirst.com with questions for the author or Dr. Maxine Thompson


February 27, 2017


February 27, 2017


Dr. Maxine Thompson
Publisher, Author, Founder of

Maxine Thompson Literary and Educational Services
Author of
Affirmations and Essays for Melanoid People



Listen to Archives: Replay

Sponsored by:


EXECUTIVE SPONSORS:

January 4, 2010

Dr. Maxine Thompson

Author of
Hostage of Lies

Voted A Best Book of 2009

EDC Creations
Black Pearl Magazine

Black Butterfly Press

If you are interested in becoming a guest and/or a sponsor you may visit:

www.maxinethompson.com
,

www.maxinethompson.com/artistfirst.html for available dates
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Dr. Maxine Thompson Live Internet Radio Shows
This Week’s Guest – Monday, February 13, 2017


Maxine Thompson

Dr. Maxine Thompson,
Publisher, Literary Agent, Author, Host of Internet Show is cross-referenced to her other businesses

Dr. Maxine ThompsonArtist First Internet Radio


Dr. Maxine invites you to join her this week on her various shows where she will be speaking with some interesting people.


February 13, 2017


9:00 P.M. Eastern Standard Time

This Week’s Guest – Monday, February 13, 2017

Email dj@artistfirst.com with questions for the author or Dr. Maxine Thompson


February 13, 2017


February 13, 2017


Dr. Rosie Milligan
Publisher, Author, Founder of

Black Writers on Tour



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January 4, 2010

Dr. Maxine Thompson

Author of
Hostage of Lies

Voted A Best Book of 2009

EDC Creations
Black Pearl Magazine

Black Butterfly Press

If you are interested in becoming a guest and/or a sponsor you may visit:

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Dr. Maxine Thompson Live Internet Radio Shows
This Week’s Guest – Monday, February 20, 2017


Maxine Thompson

Dr. Maxine Thompson,
Publisher, Literary Agent, Author, Host of Internet Show is cross-referenced to her other businesses

Dr. Maxine ThompsonArtist First Internet Radio


Dr. Maxine invites you to join her this week on her various shows where she will be speaking with some interesting people.


February 20, 2017


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This Week’s Guest – Monday, February 20, 2017

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February 20, 2017


February 20, 2017


Olympia LePoint
Author of

Mathaphobia



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January 4, 2010

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Hostage of Lies

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If you are interested in becoming a guest and/or a sponsor you may visit:

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Dr. Maxine Thompson Live Internet Radio Shows
This Week’s Guest – Monday, January 30, 2017


Maxine Thompson

Dr. Maxine Thompson,
Publisher, Literary Agent, Author, Host of Internet Show is cross-referenced to her other businesses

Dr. Maxine ThompsonArtist First Internet Radio


Dr. Maxine invites you to join her this week on her various shows where she will be speaking with some interesting people.


January 30, 2017


9:00 P.M. Eastern Standard Time

This Week’s Guest – Monday, January 16, 2017

Email dj@artistfirst.com with questions for the author or Dr. Maxine Thompson


January 30, 2017


Tensie J. Taylor
Author of

Bullied From Terror to Triumph



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January 4, 2010

Dr. Maxine Thompson

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Hostage of Lies

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Black Pearl Magazine

Black Butterfly Press

If you are interested in becoming a guest and/or a sponsor you may visit:

www.maxinethompson.com
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Dr. Maxine Thompson Live Internet Radio Shows
This Week’s Guest – Monday, January 16, 2017


Maxine Thompson

Dr. Maxine Thompson,
Publisher, Literary Agent, Author, Host of Internet Show is cross-referenced to her other businesses

Dr. Maxine ThompsonArtist First Internet Radio


Dr. Maxine invites you to join her this week on her various shows where she will be speaking with some interesting people.


January 16, 2017


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This Week’s Guest – Monday, January 16, 2017

Email dj@artistfirst.com with questions for the author or Dr. Maxine Thompson


January 16, 2017



Briana and Dr. Peter Borten
Authors of

The Well Life
How to Structure Sweetness and Space To Create Balance, Happiness and Peace



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January 4, 2010

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Hostage of Lies

Voted A Best Book of 2009

EDC Creations
Black Pearl Magazine

Black Butterfly Press

If you are interested in becoming a guest and/or a sponsor you may visit:

www.maxinethompson.com
,

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