We had the good fortune of connecting with Sandra Morgan, and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sandra, can you walk us through the thought process of starting your business?
I’ve owned and operated several businesses throughout my life/career, including a current business, a digital marketing company called The Network Chefs. Each of those businesses stemmed from a need that arose within my own work life, i.e., the digital marketing company was created because I needed a way to market my other businesses. So, rather than hiring some other company to do it for me, I started my own company, which has also enabled me to help other companies market their businesses online.
Morgan Pierce Media & Publishing was created out of that same need. I had a book idea that I wanted to publish, and to make a long story short, I made the huge mistake of going with another publishing company and had a horrible experience. Out of that experience, I realized there was a need for a publishing company with time-honored values and a genuine desire to help authors get their work published and marketed to help them sell books!
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Creating a publishing & media company from the ground up has proven to be a monumental task and an enormous learning curve. However, it has also been very exciting because it utilizes one of my favorite things – creativity!
What sets us apart from other publishers? We consider ourselves a Hybrid-Publisher. What is that exactly? Morgan Pierce Media & Publishing is unique in the world of publishing because we’re neither traditional publishing nor are we self-publishing. As an independent publisher, we bill ourselves as a “hybrid” for authors, and we proudly occupy a much-needed alternative in a rapidly changing publishing landscape.
We’re always asked the question, “Are you a vanity press?” Not at all!
A vanity press is essentially just a press with little to no creative or editorial standards. A lot of Vanity Press publishers take control of an author’s work and own it through tricky, scammy clauses hidden within the contract. At Morgan Pierce Media & Publishing, we guarantee our authors retain the rights and ownership once published.
A vanity press also takes every manuscript for publishing. They even solicit books that have already been published but aren’t making it. At Morgan Pierce Media & Publishing, we want to ensure every author and book we publish meets our criteria. Like most traditional publishers, we don’t take every manuscript simply to make a profit like a vanity publisher would. We want our authors to be successful, and accepting manuscripts we know won’t do well goes against every nuance of our company’s mission.
Rejection letters are hard to handle for authors but necessary at times. They’re hard for us to send out, too. But, instead of providing a flat rejection with no reason behind it, we always try to provide constructive feedback on their manuscripts so they can take them and revise them if they so choose.
Another very important question we get is, “How much do I keep in royalties?” The good news is the royalties generated from the sale of our author’s books are entirely their own. Here at Morgan Pierce Media & Publishing, we don’t touch your royalties! The fees for our services that you pay upfront are all we collect from you.
Once your book is published and out in the world, according to the service package chosen, we bow out, leaving you center stage to collect your accolades and moolah!
Another thing that sets us apart is our services. On the publishing side, we provide:
• Cover Design
• Book Interior Design
• E-book Conversion
o Developmental Editing
o Copy Editing
o Proof Reading
o Line Editing
• Book Distribution
We also provide services for Screenplays and Teleplays, Ghostwriting, and Audio Books.
Vanity Publishers pump out the books but rarely provide marketing services to their authors. MPM&P creates the following for all our authors and provides the first 90 days of marketing their book online:
• Press kit
• Author page and
• Author business card
• Digital press room
• Online news releases
• Search engine marketing and optimization
• Outreach to local, regional, and national Bookstores
• Google Book Search
• Online retailer listing
• Industry trade directories
• Author Page on MPM&P Website
• Facebook Author Page
• Instagram Author Page
• Facebook and Instagram Ads
Visit our website: MorganPierceMediaPublishing.com, for more information about our services and answers to FAQs.
How did you get to where you are today, business-wise?
Over the past forty-plus years, my business experience came from being a manager and sales educator for several national and international companies.
In 2002 I became the General Manager of a real estate business, contributing my knowledge and experience to the 800 Realtors under the brokerage. Although I enjoyed the challenges, there was something missing.
I decided to leave the corporate environment in 2008 and fulfill a fifteen-year dream of creating a magazine for women fifty-plus.
In 2008, I founded KWC™/ KalonWomen.com, where I still serve as Chief Editor. In 2010, I founded TheNetworkChefs.com – a digital marketing company. I am also a Midlife Strategist who specializes in supporting women and men through the myriad of life changes after age fifty.
Then, in May of 2022, with the help of my business partner, we launched Morgan Pierce Media & Publishing.
All in all, it’s been a long but fun ride, and I would do it all over again tomorrow.
Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges?
Starting a business of any kind is never easy. Those that say it is, well, let’s just say they’re not being upfront about the hard times. The twelve-to-fourteen-hour workdays. The getting no sleep because you’re worried about finances and being able to make it all happen. Oh, and did I mention actually making some money to support yourself and the people who work for you? The pressure is palpable.
When you’re a dedicated business owner, there are days when the challenges seem insurmountable. So, I do the one thing that makes all the challenges easier. I do a lot of praying and putting it all in God’s hands. Because that’s where it needs to be for me to fulfill my mission to others through my business.
What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way?
This question could take days and days to answer because every day, there is a lesson learned.
One of the major lessons I had to learn early on is understanding business is always in flux. This has never been more prevalent than in the past few years. Today, businesses need to be agile and adapt to always-changing technology trends to stay relevant and deliver iconic customer experiences.
You have to be able to change – some days on a minute-by-minute basis – and adapt your business to that change. One important thing to remember in business is with change comes growth, and you cannot grow without learning a few lessons along the way.
What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
At Morgan Pierce Media Publishing, we understand what it feels like to have a burning desire to share your message and become a published author. We also know how daunting it can be to publish a book which is why we’ve taken our combined 60+ years of experience in the world of Media, Publishing, Radio, Film, and TV to bring together a comprehensive publishing house that helps authors set themselves up for successful book launches.
● Founded by published authors with decades of experience
● Highly respected in the industry
● Decades of experience in Marketing
● Transparent communication
● Straight-forward process
● Authors keep 100% of the royalties.
● Exceptional quality
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I live in one of the best “foodie” locations in the US – Houston Galleria! Because of that, there is always the “Where do you want to go eat?” question thrown out among me and my friends when we get together. A resounding sigh follows because there are so many places to choose from it’s hard to decide.
With that being said, I would definitely take them out during Restaurant Week – thirty-seven days of meals! We could literally try something new for each meal of the day and barely touch the surface of what is available. It’s a fun time for everyone here in Houston.
As far as entertainment. Once again, there is so much to choose from: The Houston Museum District, The Space Center, Galveston, The Boardwalk in Kemah, The Houston Zoo, The Theater District, and Minute Maid Park, home of the Astros. We could spend an entire week driving across Houston and never see it all – but we could try! Wouldn’t that be fun!?
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First, the main dedication goes to God because, without Him, I can tell you I wouldn’t have made it through all the trials and struggles that come with owning a business, much less the day-to-day act of living in this crazy world.
Second, I made a friend over a decade ago. That friendship blossomed into a beautiful business partnership with Carrie Pierce, and we’ve never looked back!
Third, Carrie and I made a new friend this year and added her to our MPMP circle. A big shout out to Chrissy Bernal, who is amazing and does our PR for the company and our authors.