Top 10 Most Inspiring Women 2018

Lois Hoffman

The Happy Self Publisher | Visit Website

Jane Clark, Co-Founder of BrandSwan

Why We Chose Lois Hoffman

“Lois is everywhere and everyone knows Lois; but, that’s not why I chose her. We became fast friends after we kept bumping into each other at various networking events. She is one of the most delightful people to be around — and most importantly, she laughs at all my jokes. She is an amazing and persistent entrepreneur. I see her social media posts everywhere from Linked in to Facebook. Her brand is always on point and consistent in everything she does. So dedicated and hardworking, Lois just doesn’t quit. And that’s why she deserves to be on my list. I find her compassionate and inspiring. Oh, and did I mention she is also a juggler? Yeah.”

Jane Clark Signature

Lois Hoffman

The Happy Self Publisher | Visit Website

Tell us a little bit about what you do at The Happy Self-Publisher. How did you get started?

At The Happy Self-Publisher, I inspire writers and empower authors through personalized writing, publishing, and business development services. I offer coaching and an online course for nonfiction writers just starting their writing journeys, self-publishing services for fiction and nonfiction writers who have a finished manuscript, and coaching to help authors create a coaching, consulting, or speaking business of their own.

I wrote poetry as a young person, children’s stories as an adult and turned to writing nonfiction after going to a workshop that promised I could write a book in a weekend. Ha! I knew that wasn’t the reality for writing a book anyone wanted to read, but it fueled my imagination and curiosity. It took me nine pain-staking months to write and publish the first book as I had to learn everything about the world of self-publishing. Once I did, my writing friends asked how I did it, and I set off to write a blog post about the experience. One blog post turned into two, and two turned into five until finally, it turned into my book, The Self-Publishing Roadmap. By the time I was done, I knew I didn’t just want to tell people how to publish; I wanted to teach and help people publish, and The Happy Self-Publisher was born.

What change do you want to see in the world, and how are you aiding that cause?

I’m a believer in democratizing thought. As the publishing industry feels their profits squeezed from every direction, they turn to only the most profitable books often by most well-known people. That leaves little room for writing outside the lines, so to speak. Words by talented writers, adept storytellers, and family historians wouldn’t have a chance to inspire, delight, or challenge a reader without self-publishing. I give people the freedom to write and publish and share their stories with others. The world is a better place when we share our dreams, our experiences, our knowledge, and the creativity that wells up inside us.

We know that you're also part of the Juggling Hoffmans. How did you learn to juggle?

I learned to juggle after I met a guy who juggled. I thought it looked cool and he was cute. So I got three tennis balls and practiced every day for a month, crawling under chairs for errant throws, bonking myself in the head, and cleaning up the wreckage left behind in my persistent pursuit of the 3-ball cascade. Eventually, I succeeded in nailing the trick and wooing the guy with my “talent.” I’m not sure he was impressed with the juggling, but he married me anyway. Michael taught me nearly everything else except for the various tricks I picked up at juggling conventions throughout the years from both international performers and backyard hobbyists.

Tell us about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant in your career.

Aside from learning to juggle, the most significant accomplishment in my career was writing a book. It changed the course of my life, but just as importantly, it altered the way I viewed myself. The feeling of opening the box of books bearing my name was rivaled only by the birth of my children. Each subsequent book and online course I wrote felt the same, perhaps how the feeling of winning the Super Bowl never gets diminished even with multiple victories. Since I’m no good at throwing a spiral, I’ll stick to writing books.

What is the greatest challenge you ever overcame?

The hardest thing I ever did was to get on stage and perform for the second time. The first time I performed, I failed miserably. The countless hours I spent practicing was no match to the nerves of hundreds of eyes on me. I wanted to quit. I wanted to crawl in a hole. Something inside picked at me, and I knew it would be a defining moment in my life. When the opportunity presented itself, I got on stage again. And with 25 years of performing in my rearview mirror, I’m glad I did.

You won an award from the Delaware Press Association. What advice can you give others in similar industries who want to get recognized

I encourage people to research who is winning awards in their field, where the awards are given out, and the criteria for judging. Next, of course, is to create something valuable or memorable. Maybe the simplest part, but the most often overlooked, is to submit your work! In some cases, you’ll receive valuable feedback to make whatever you’ve created even better.

Stay tuned for another #bossbabe featured tomorrow!

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