Monthly Archives: April 2016


Hidden Talent

Inside the Steelers’ draft room at Three Rivers Stadium with (from left to right) Bill Nunn Jr., Dick Haley, director of player personnel, V. Tim Rooney, a nephew of Art Rooney Sr., and Art Rooney Jr., vice president. Courtesy of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Author of The Color of Sundays and Breakaway: The Inside Story of the Pittsburgh Penguins' Rebirth, Andrew Conte, brings to light the hidden talent. Championships are made in the late rounds. Everyone knows about the first-round picks, the guys sitting in the green room waiting for their name to be called. The only suspense centers on what team exactly will choose them -- not whether anyone will. Many NFL insiders knew about "Mean" Joe Greene before the 1969 draft. A defensive tackle, he attended the University of North Texas, a small, but racially integrated school. The Steelers chose him with the team's first pick, fourth overall. Then 234 picks later, in the 10th round of the same draft, the Steelers also chose L.C. Greenwood, another defensive line player, who was a student at Arkansas-Pine Bluff, an historically black college. He had been overlooked by every NFL team -- many times. Together, Greene and Greenwood made up half of the Steelers' famous "Steel Curtain" front four. The other half came together two years later. Dwight White, from East Texas State (now Texas A&M University at Commerce), went in the fourth round, 104th overall. The Steelers found the final piece, Ernie Holmes, at Texas Southern University, an HBCU, in the 8th round, 203rd overall. Nunn plaque: Steelers scout Bill Nunn Jr. helped the team find many of its late-round draft picks during the 1970s. A plaque with his name and face now hangs outside the draft room door. Those four men, cobbled together mostly from later rounds, went on to comprise what would become one of the most-famous NFL defensive lines in history. Even the Steelers' famed 1974 draft hinged on the team's later picks. That year, the team found four hall-of-famers with its first five choices: Lynn Swann, in the first round, 21st overall; Jack Lambert, in the second round, 46th; John Stallworth, fourth round, 82nd; and Mike Webster, fifth round, 125th. After the draft ended that year, the Steelers picked up Donnie Shell, an undrafted free agent from South Carolina State, another HBCU. He nearly missed having a shot at the NFL but ended up playing in five Pro Bowls and winning four championships.   This blog has been brought to you by CPG News and Information Services


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5 Steps to Finding a Distributor at Book Expo America 2016 in Chicago

By  Tom Doherty If this is your first trip to a BEA conference or your first trip to BEA looking for a distributor here are a few tidbits that will hopefully make your search easier and more productive. Something to keep in mind when visiting distributors at BEA is that much of the distributors’ staff at the booth will be sales and marketing people. That makes sense since BEA is the time to showcase upcoming summer, fall, and winter titles to retail, wholesale, library and other institutional buyers. I encourage you to talk to the sales and marketing people, but you want to specifically look for somebody at the booth familiar with client services. The following are 5 steps to finding a distributor at Book Expo America 2016 in Chicago. You may not be able to get all of the information you need or all of your questions answered during the show. If the distributor staff you need are too busy then take notes about the booth, search out printed material about their services and talk to sales and marketing staff or the distributor’s existing clients that might be at the booth. If you can talk to the right people be sure to have prepared questions and take notes during or directly after your discussion. You’ll have a hard time keeping track of what you did and didn’t learn about each booth visited after the show. Do your research before the show. Which distributors offer the best match of services to needs, do they distribute similar product, and of course will they be attending Book Expo America? Prepare your questions in advance. Do your initial reconnaissance the first day. Stop and talk if you can, but the first day and much of the second day distributor staff may be inundated with customers as well as client prospects. If the staff at the booth is very busy you might ask for a time to schedule a fifteen minute meeting later in the show. By late the second day and much of the last day booth staff will have much more time to answer your questions and follow up questions. You may also need to return to a booth for follow up questions later in the show so be prepared to back track. Have your elevator pitch ready before you get to the show. Bring along one handout that includes information about your book(s) and your contact information. Keep it simple. The best thing you can do is try and schedule as many meetings in advance of BEA as possible. Visit one or both of the links I list below to find a list of distributors to begin your research. Contact those attending the show and see if you can set up a meeting in advance. If you have fewer than five titles then fifteen minutes should be all you need. If your line is larger you might want to schedule more time. You can (and should) always follow up after the show to have any unanswered questions answered. Good luck at the show and be sure to wear comfortable shoes. To learn more about your distribution options through Cardinal Publishers Group visit www.cardinalpub.com.   You can visit us at BEA 2016 in Chicago at booth #1624. Some good resources for finding distributors: http://www.bookmarket.com/distributors.htm http://www.ibpa-online.org/resources/distributor-wholesalers/ If you are serious about publishing for profit or even profitably publishing for a non-profit I suggest you consider joining an organization like the Independent Book Publishers Association http://www.ibpa-online.org/benefits/list-of-benefits/ This organization has a great monthly magazine and many other education and marketing benefits. There are other good organizations that help self-publishers and I encourage you to look into several, particularly local or regional ones when available, to see which best fits your needs.   Tom Doherty is the president and founder of Cardinal Publishers Group. This blog is brought to you by CPG News & Information Services  


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Jordan Spieth’s Masters Collapse Not a Sports First nor will it be a Last

Spieth’s collapse at this year’s Masters has been rated by some reporters as one of the worst collapses in golf history. But collapses in sport are not uncommon. It's not a sports first nor will it be a last. They do occur and will continue to occur. For every loser, there is a winner and fans love to see come from behind victories. You may even say that this phenomenon helps create the big salaries that we see in sports. Sport fans are constantly looking for the unexpected and it’s probably one reason that sport draws big numbers in TV ratings and at live events. But for the athlete that is having a meltdown, we have to look at what causes this collapse. Quite often it’s a mental thing. For some reason, they cannot stop a downward trend. How can they play great one minute and then totally lose it for the rest of a game? From my book, The Last 9 Seconds, I spend some time helping coaches work with their athletes to stop this meltdown by providing some simple psychological ideas. Here is an excerpt. I recall a similar collapse while I was watching the 2005 Women’s Australian Open tennis final between Lindsay Davenport and Serena Williams . Davenport was ahead 1 set to 0 against Serena Williams and ahead halfway through the second set. Davenport had the opportunity to break Serena Williams and take a commanding lead in the second set. She had 7 break points and numerous opportunities to win one of the games in the second set. She failed. Shortly afterwards, in the next game, Davenport had Serena Williams at 40/love but missed a simple shot that should have put the game away and tied the set at 4 games apiece. After that miss, the game, set, and match were practically over. You could see it in her body language and reaction. I remember saying to myself after that miss, “it’s over, and she’s given up unless she composes herself”. She proceeded to lose total composure after that miss and lost that game ending it with a double fault. She then lost again to lose the second set. In the third set Williams won 6-0 and won 2 sets to 1 to claim the Australian Open Women’s title. She was unable to mentally overcome her errors and she broke down so quickly it was sad to see such an even match turn so one-sided in such a short time. Eliminate errors and you will be more successful The key to victory or success in any individual sport comes down to eliminating errors. The golfer who gets a hole-in-one and then a triple bogey the next three holes will not win the competition too often, if at all. The tennis player who misses and easy shot has to be mentally strong enough to overcome a mistake and focus on the next shot. Tennis player Roger Federer has an amazing ability to stay focused, eliminate errors, and stay consistent without being too flashy to get the job done. Former number one ranked men’s tennis player in the world, Roger Federer said that after years of playing tennis he has found peace on the court. He used to be “wild’ on the court before becoming “number one” because he’d get frustrated: “Now I can handle it. If I miss shots, I say, ‘Okay, I hope the next one goes better’. So I can just always see something positive in my game”. When I lecture to athletes I say, “ DO NOT let the past affect the future in a negative way. If anything, make it a positive thing. Ask yourself to control the emotions that you have racing through your mind when you make a mistake. You can simply re-focus by telling yourself to calm down and do the simple things right as you have done all game. Analyze what went wrong quickly and tell yourself that you know how to fix it. The key is that you know what you will do next time when a similar situation presents itself. What you need to do is be thrilled with the fact you are playing a sport you love to play and be excited for your next chance. You will be happy being where you are. Do not worry about the people watching. You can do nothing about what happened. Just get excited about what can happen when you do better later because you will be more focused.” Federer worked with sport psychologists to stay at the top of his game. Overcoming mistakes is huge and is something you have to learn to deal with to get to the top. It will happen to the best but the best will bounce back from any breakdown and stay towards the top for a long time. Those who cannot deal with adversity will disappear off the spotlight. Tiger Woods learned to stay focused and forget about bad holes early in his career. I’m sure Jordan Spieth will bounce back. Time will tell. John DeBenedictis is author of The Last 9 Seconds: A Psychological Perspective http://www.cardinalpub.com/store/last-9-seconds-2/?add-to-cart=1157  This blog is brought to you by CPG News and Information


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Easy and Festive Warm-Weather Salad

By Laura Theodore Laura Theodore’s Vegan-Ease: An Easy Guide to Enjoying a Plant-Based Diet, offers more than 130 delicious, vegan recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, each complete with nutritional analysis. Enhanced by over 200, full-color photographs, each recipe is ranked with an Ease-Factor to make it easy to choose recipes that fit into any busy schedule. If you are looking for an easy and fabulous warm-weather salad, this tasty recipe makes a lovely addition to any festive springtime meal. Spooned into tiny parfait or champagne glasses, this colorful combo provides a refreshing change to a green salad. With a pretty presentation, and delicious flavors, Avocado Salad Parfaits are sure to please all the diners at your table throughout the spring and summer months! Avocado Salad Parfaits 1 or 2 small tomatoes or 12 to 14 grape tomatoes, diced 1½ medium avocados, peeled, pit removed and diced 1 small clove garlic, minced Juice from ½ medium lemon 1/8 teaspoon sea salt, plus more as needed 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, optional Put all of the ingredients in a small bowl and gently stir to combine. Season with more salt, if desired. Cover and refrigerate for 30 to 60 minutes before serving. To serve as a fancy first course, spoon in to pretty glasses, displayed on a decorative salad plate. This warm-weather salad is easy and fabulous!       Laura Theodore is an award-winning public television personality and host of the Jazzy Vegetarian, presently available in 88% of US households. She is a vegan chef, radio host, jazz singer, and the author of Jazzy Vegetarian Classics 9781937856939 and Jazzy Vegetarian 9781570672613. In 2014, Laura was honored with a “Special Achievement Taste-Award” along with the likes of Martha Stewart and Emeril; she has also been recognized by VegNews magazine with a “Totally Tubular Veggie Award.” Laura hosts the popular podcast radio show, Jazzy Vegetarian Radio, now in its 7th year, and has appeared on every major TV network. She writes a weekly food column for Mother Earth Living and has been featured in many highly respected news, food and lifestyle-related journals. A critically acclaimed jazz singer and songwriter her CD, Tonight's the Night, received a “Musician Magazine Award.” Laura has appeared in many plays and musicals, including the Off Broadway hit show Beehive, earning her a coveted “Backstage Bistro Award” and was honored with the Denver Critics Drama Circle Award as “Best Actress in a Musical” for her starring role as Janis Joplin in the world premiere production of Love, Janis. Photo credit: David Kaplan          


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