Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Entrepreneur Finds Book, The Business Follows

Contact: Susan Klopfer


Entrepreneurial Skills, Passion Define Author's Business

A book business built on a newly discovered passion for civil rights stories from the Mississippi Delta has taken an author by surprise.

Susan Klopfer, a Hanover College graduate and journalist, moved to the Mississippi Delta in 2003 as the Emmett Till cold case was unfolding with investigations by the F.B.I. and the U.S. Dept. of Justice.

Living on the grounds of Parchman Penitentiary where her husband was chief psychologist, a notorious compound with a difficult history, gave Klopfer a unique opportunity to take a fresh look at this civil rights ground-breaking event taking place in the Delta, and to meet people who still had the region's history fresh in their hearts and minds.

"Talking to people who were part of the modern civil rights movement, learning their stories and hearing of the injustices became a passion leading me to spend long hours researching and writing a book about Till's murder and the Delta," she said.

Emmett Till was only 14-years-old when he visited relatives in Money, Miss. from Chicago in 1955, a tiny cotton hamlett. Not understanding the unwritten Jim Crow laws of the region, Till made a deathly mistake when he wolf whistled at a store-owner's wife. He was kidnapped, brutally tortured and killed by the store owner's husband and a friend.

Klopfer became intrigued with the story and dozens of other stories she collected from Delta residents and other researchers. Recently she used her business skills to produce an e-book, audio book and print book entitled Who Killed Emmett Till? The book is also available on CD as a pdf file, and the audio version is downloadable for the iPod.

"This book began as a blog and was driven by my passion for learning and sharing stories revolving around the Delta's important history that could have been lost. I became particularly aware of how easy such history disappears when I found newspapers in libraries and newspaper offices that crumbled when I picked them up to read."

The Emmett Till book has turned the former Branson, Missouri reporter, who also holds an master's degree in business administration from Indiana Wesleyan University, into a small, entrepreneurial business owner.

"Not only do I sell the book in various formats at the back of the room when I speak, it is sold online and in independent books stores (and soon on Amazon and other online stores)," Klopfer said.

Klopfer said she has developed a strong social networking presence "...also allowing me to do book publishing seminars and professional book coaching.

"I love my business because I spend the day working at something that is meaningful to me and that helps others find the book in them, just waiting to get out."

Klopfer's website is located at www.findthebookinyou.com.

Sample audio book downloads

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