Location: ALL OVER THE WORLD!
# of Giveaways today: 2
(1) FREE Membership or Membership Renewal
(1) $5 Amazon Gift Card
Good Morning! My name is Natasha Know-It-All and I’m a reporter with the Raving Reviews News. Today, we have tracked down the extremely busy President & Founder of RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB, Nonnie Jules. We asked if she could spare a few moments for a quick Q&A and surprisingly, to our delight, she said “YES!” Although she has limited this to only a 6 Q&A session, we’re happy to have that! Any little bone she’s willing to throw at us, we’re willing to run after it! Ms. Jules rarely gives interviews so sit back, relax and take it all in! Here is her take on quality vs quantity. #Winning
Natasha: Hello, Ms. Jules! Sharing that I’m so excited to be sitting down with you today would be a great understatement! I am ecstatic, so thank you, thank you, thank you for this!
Nonnie: Oh, you’re very welcome. ‘Tis my pleasure to chat with you, as well.
Natasha: OK, I know how busy you are, so let’s get right down to business; just a few questions that came to me last night while doing my research for this sit-down. I have followed your organization since its inception and if I can remember correctly, at one point, your membership was well over 600. Can you tell us why you’re around the 400 mark today?
Nonnie: I’d love to share that with you, Ms. Know-It-All…or, would you prefer that I call you Natasha?
Natasha: Natasha would be fine, thank you (as she rolls her eyes).
Nonnie: Great! When I started RRBC, our membership was FREE. At that time, we were pushing heavily the fact that when you added your name to our roster, every other member on the roster was strongly encouraged to #follow you on social media. It got to the point that folks were joining us simply to grow their followers list. It was disheartening to know that there were unscrupulous people out there who would go to such lengths just to grow their followers. Well, they’d come on board, do absolutely nothing for the club or within the club, show no support for their fellow members and then they’d leave. When I was completely fed up with these characters, we decided that we would begin charging a fee for membership, a small one, but one nonetheless. I knew that this would weed out the riff-raff from the serious authors and readers who wanted to truly belong to a community of support, so our fee of $25/annually was instated. We had much email from members (new and old) who said they would gladly spend more for all that they received, or was offered here. We still have those today who choose not to renew their membership, and for a great majority of those, they joined, put their name on our roster, did absolutely nothing within the club, then looked around one day and said “Hmmm, what is this club doing for me? No one is reading and reviewing my book.” Well, if you put absolutely nothing in, you probably weren’t getting much out.
Natasha: OK. Were you disappointed to see your numbers fall?
Nonnie: (Laughing) Not at all, Natasha! Actually, I was excited! I’m all about quality and not quantity. I’m not the author who wants to be known for writing MANY books, I’m the author who wants to be known for writing GREAT books, and if that is only ONE great book, I’m happy with that! All organizations go thru change in membership and if you’ve ever belonged to any, you would know that this kind of change is typical. I want only the best in my organization and if that means I have only 10 great members as opposed to 100 bits of riff-raff, I’d feel blessed that I had the 10!
Natasha: It’s pretty evident that you have some folks who have been with you for quite some time. Why do you think they stick around?
Nonnie: I have a great many board members, ex-board members, and members who have been here for a very long time, some since day one. These authors (for the most part) realize the importance of community, and they’ve never found anything like RRBC before. Authors supporting one another instead of competing against each other? That’s unheard of! But, it’s what we do and it is why our core of supportive members remain. AND, they also see the great benefits to membership here…and those benefits are numerous and all GRAND!
Natasha: Would you mind sharing the names of some of those awesome members you speak of above? We’d like to get to know them ourselves!
Nonnie: Of course! Bruce A. Borders, Shirley Harris-Slaughter, Beem Weeks and Marlena Hand have been with me practically since the very beginning and you could count them among the founding members group. Bruce and Shirley are now retired, LIFETIME Board Members, but they are always willing and ready to jump in whenever they are called upon. I can’t leave without mentioning some of our other awesome-tastic members, as well: Joy Nwosu Lo-Bamijoko, John Howell, John Fioravanti, Peggy Hattendorf, Bette A. Stevens, Nicholas Rossis, Jan Hawke, Gwen Plano, Michelle Abbott, Rhani D’Chae, Harmony Kent, Natalie Ducey, Linda Mims, Jennifer Hinsman, C. S. Boyack, Jan Sikes, Gordon Bickerstaff, Karen Ingalls, and so many more, and a great big shout-out to those especially supportive newer members, that I’m sure I’ve failed to mention (but you know who you are, and I want you to say so down below!)
Natasha: Well, OK! That’s quite a list! What makes these members stand out from some of your past members who you would tag as riff-raff?
Nonnie: Natasha, these members stand out in my mind because they are so supportive of everyone else. Their timelines are filled with support of others. If you’re on a blog tour, you can find them at the door waiting, even before your tour begins (and you don’t have to even offer a giveaway for most of them to follow along), and they make themselves known in the RRBC community…they engage with their fellow members. That engagement is one of the most important factors to having a successful membership within RRBC. Our supportive members have to really know you to throw the full weight of their support behind you, so don’t just slap your name on our roster, put your books in our catalog and then expect to be supported in grand fashion. It doesn’t work that way here. When you give a little, you get so much more in return!
Natasha: Everyone knows you’re a no-holds-barred kind of person. Does it bother you that you are perceived as such, or do you not mind that label at all?
Nonnie: I’m not a label-person, Natasha, and sticks and stones…right? I learned long ago that I cannot control the actions and thoughts of other people, so I don’t try. Anyone who follows me anywhere, knows that I don’t live my life based on how I am perceived by others, or what others might think of me. If you like me, great! If you don’t, well, that’s your problem…I love me! And me loving me, is all that matters. There are too many people who live their lives based on the feelings of others, and when you live that way, you can’t truly be happy. I mean, if someone is angry with you, you can’t sleep, if someone doesn’t like you, you can’t eat, if someone isn’t your friend, you have a bad day…let me make this crystal clear: I sleep, eat and have great days so I guess it’s safe to say I’m not one of these people. I have said, and will go to my grave with this, I will never give ANYONE that kind of power over my life. For those of you who have relinquished your power to others, take it back. It’s not at all worth it in the end.
Natasha: Well, that wraps up this interview! I wish we had more time with you, Ms. Jules, but we do understand that any moment away from the RRBC Corporate Offices, is a moment lost on supporting your membership, and we wouldn’t want that. Any final words?
Nonnie: Natasha, thanks for the interview, I really enjoyed it! I’d like to thank everyone who is following along and partying with us on our block party this month! Be sure to leave a comment below to get entered into our daily drawing and there are also two other stops today, so don’t forget to visit the lineup to find out where they are.
If you haven’t joined RRBC, ask yourself “What am I waiting for? Am I being truly supported out here alone or with these other clubs who offer more lip service than actual service?” I assure you, the sooner you take the leap, the better off you’ll be with the power of RRBC standing behind you!
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