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Fonz Morris

Fonz Morris

San Jose, California

Fonz Morris is a Brooklyn-born entrepreneur and designer, based in San Jose. His design and tech experience covers start-ups and corporate America roles on both coasts of the United States.

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About the author

Fonz Morris is an entrepreneur and self-taught designer, born in Brooklyn and now based in San Jose. He’s been part of design teams in start-ups and corporate America in Philadelphia, New York, Atlanta, Washington D.C., and California. His belief in the importance of self-driven education continued through his travels through Europe, Central and South America, and South East Asia. Since 2020, Fonz Morris has been the Lead Product Designer at Netflix. Prior to joining Netflix, he led a design team at Coursera.

Fonz has worked with some of the world’s biggest companies, collaborated with hip-hop producers and entrepreneurs, and led his own start-up teams. He secured angel funding for start-ups – including working with the Lomax family, one of the few Black venture capitalist families in the USA.

As a fierce advocate for the self-taught designer and entrepreneur, he is involved in mentoring design students through a range of organizations including California College of the Arts, and General Assembly’s UX Design Bootcamp. Fonz has contributed his knowledge to conferences including AfroTech, UX Fest, UXDX, Rethink, Made In the Future, and State of Black Design. He is involved as an advising partner or consulting with venture capital firms First Round, Floodgate, and Signalfire, helping guide the next young designers and self-starters. He has supported start-ups through the early stages of development and helped guide them to Angel or Series-A investment.
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Self Design

Self Design is a powerful story of resilience and perseverance in pursuing one's dreams, taking readers on a journey from Brooklyn to Silicon Valley.

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Biography & Memoir
50,000 words
100% complete
5 publishers interested

Synopsis

Fonz Morris began his journey in Bed-Stuy where, as a young man, he decided that he was not going to become a victim of the streets, or a criminal statistic like so many other Black men before him. Fonz Morris designed his own path to success. He worked his way into acceptance at the prestigious HBCU Morehouse College. He put himself through university by working the bar at one of Atlanta’s most high end strip clubs. He taught himself design between classes during his senior year at Georgia State. His determination kept him working at his own company while holding down other full time positions. The hard work paid off when he secured angel investments for his own start ups. Twice.

Then it fell apart.

Facing all that he had built crumbling around him, Fonz drew on the experiences that had made him the man he was. He began again to design his path, founded on the principles he’d built through his journey. This foundation drew on the lessons growing up in Brooklyn after losing his mother early in life. This came from the strength he had learned from being accepted to his dream college, and needing to transfer when he couldn’t afford the tuition. It was the resilience he had developed up after the strip club closed and he found himself sleeping on friends’ couches, still working towards his degree. The durability he drew from to survive two house fires. The self belief developed from knowing his work was worthwhile. The determination to keep working, putting failure behind him, letting these lessons guide him as he created his own path and designed the future he wanted.

Fonz’s story is about wanting more out of life, for him and his family. It’s a story of how he was able to do what some describe as unthinkable. It’s a story for anyone who has dreams of being an entrepreneur and reaching success, anyone who has ambitions of creating yourself. His path includes moments of deep resilience, overcoming the highs and lows of working hard on the grind, taking risks like you have nothing to lose – because, essentially, you don’t. It’s about how to avoid negativity, accept mistakes and failures in a way to learn from them, how to balance the past with the present, how to stay true to yourself and your own path, how to keep focus and determination through all the noise, how to connect reality to your own dreams of self design.

Sales arguments

  • Fonz Morris is an inspirational driven self-starter who navigated his own path out of the violent streets of Brooklyn, to attain a university degree and start down the road of entrepreneurship. He suffered personal loss and set backs along the way, drawing on his own resilience and tenacity to push through and achieve his goals.
  • Fonz Morris has broken through in an industry with only a 5% rate for African American employees. His success in this has been both with large corporations, including Netflix and Coursera, and as a founder of start ups where he secured angel investments to develop his projects, including funding from the Lomax family, one of the few Black venture families in the USA.
  • Fonz Morris is a frequent speaker at industry and community events, including AfroTech, where his perspective and insights on design and business are in high demand. He works to assist designers, start ups, and other entrepreneurs through initiatives including with First Round, Flood Gate, and SignalFire. He is an active mentor through tech and community initiatives.

Similar titles

  • Heavy. Kiese Laymon. Like Heavy, Self Design follows the journey of a strong Black man growing up in America in the late 20th century. The baggage both men carry differs, and their journey takes different directions. Fonz’ journey travels through business and entrepreneurship to the world of Silicon Valley.
  • The Tao of Wu. The RZA. Like the RZA, Fonz followed his own path from the boroughs of New York to achieve his dreams, as a self taught producer. Both men faced large personal losses and deep self reflection along their journey. A strong drive in self education, an unfaltering self belief in their talents, and deep seeded resilience is common in both books.
  • Manchild In The Promised Land. Claude Brown. Brown’s memoir of Black achievement was a seller of over a million copies recounting his path out of Harlem in the 1950s. Self Design is a similar tale, showing Fonz Morris following his own path out of Brooklyn of the 1990s out of a community plagued by the crack epidemic, drugs and gangs.

Audience

Self Design will appeal to readers 20-40 who have experienced set backs in following a dream, particularly POC, entrepreneurs, and designers.

5 publishers interested Express interest
Ballast Books logo Ballast Books

250 copies • Partial manuscript.
Ballast Books is a full-service hybrid publisher that handles all aspects of book creation, design, publishing, marketing, distribution, and platform building. We help our authors sell more books, secure more keynotes, do more consulting, earn more customers, and book more media appearances.

We want to work with the best of the best: Former Special Operations Forces, CEOs, big thinkers, industry-leading experts. Top-performing people with experiences worth sharing and skills that translate into a larger message and goal.

We've seen particular success with military memoirs, but we've also recently hired a children's book specialist, so we run the spectrum of genres. We're a small but growing team and take pride in dedicating more time and energy to all our authors than traditional publishers.

Hybrid publisher

All categories

, United States

Koehler Books logo Koehler Books

250 copies • Completed manuscript.
Koehler Books is an Indie publisher based in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Our team of dedicated professionals promises you a holistic publishing experience where you'll receive our full attention, collaboration, and coaching every step of the way. We offer two publishing models: a traditional non-fee model for the highest quality work, as well as a co-publishing model that includes creative development fees for emerging authors. Our titles are broad-based and include nearly every major non-fiction and fiction genre.

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Commercial Fiction, Contemporary Fiction, Historical Fiction, LGBT Fiction, Literary Fiction, Mystery, Thriller, Horror & Suspense, Mind & Body, Romantic Fiction, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Women's Fiction, YA Fiction, Biography & Memoir, Business & Money, Career & Success, Communication Skills, Corporate Culture, Management & Leadership, Marketing & Sales, Personal Growth & Self-Improvement, Sex & Relationships, Sports & Outdoors, Science Fiction & Humour

Worldwide

1106 Design, LLC logo 1106 Design, LLC

Dear Author,

You worked hard to write your manuscript; finally, it's ready to release. You know that expert assistance is needed, but perhaps you didn’t realize that working with a publisher is no longer necessary—especially publishers who charge fees to produce your book upfront and "share" more of your revenue whenever a book is sold.

1106 Design is an author services company. We offer all the editorial and design services you’d expect from a publisher, transforming your manuscript into a market-ready book. But here's the difference: we help you secure print-on-demand printing and worldwide distribution in your name. This means you earn several dollars more for every book sold instead of a meager “royalty.”

We understand that your book is not just a passion project but also a potential source of income. That's why we offer a range of services tailored to your needs at affordable prices. Depending on your manuscript's word count and complexity, our packages range from $4,000 to $10,000. And here's the best part: after this one-time investment, every penny of net revenue from book sales goes directly to you, never to us.

If this sounds like a better way to publish your book, I invite you to browse our services, design samples, no-surprises pricing, outstanding customer reviews, and educational articles at https://1106design.com. You can download a free PDF of my book, "Publish Like the Pros: A Brief Guide to Quality Self-Publishing and an Insider's Look at a Misunderstood Industry," and request a free, no-obligation consultation.

1106 Design has been in business since 2001 and is rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau. We are a “Highly Recommended Expert” at IngramSpark.com and rated "Excellent" at Alli, The Alliance for Independent Authors, at SelfPublishingAdvice.org, where you can find a "watchdog list" of the best and worst publishing services companies.

How can we serve you today?

Sincerely,
Michele DeFilippo, owner

Service publisher

Children Fiction, Christian Fiction, Commercial Fiction, Contemporary Fiction, Historical Fiction, Literary Essay, Literary Fiction, Mind & Body, Mystery, Thriller, Horror & Suspense, Mythology & Folk Tales, Poetry, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Women's Fiction, YA Fiction, Biography & Memoir, Business & Money, Career & Success, Children Non-Fiction, Christian Non-Fiction, Cookbooks, Food & Wine, Communication Skills, Corporate Culture, Current Affairs, Economics, Education, Entrepreneurship & Small Business, Health, Fitness & Dieting, History, Humor & Entertainment, Journalism, Management & Leadership, Marketing & Sales, Mindfulness & Happiness, Money & Investment, Motivation & Inspiration, Nature & Environment, Parenting, Personal Growth & Self-Improvement, Philosophy, Politics & Social Sciences, Popular Science, Productivity & Time Management, Psychology, Reference, Religion & Spirituality, Science, Sex & Relationships, Society & Culture, Sports & Outdoors, Technology & the Future, Travel, YA Non-Fiction, Science Fiction & Humour

Worldwide

Atmosphere Press logo Atmosphere Press

250 copies • Partial manuscript.
Atmosphere Press is an independent publisher dedicated to author rights. We publish in all genres and have an exceptional editorial, design, and promotional staff. We stand for Honesty, Transparency, Professionalism, and Kindness. We want our authors and their readers to be blown away when they first hold that book in their hands. It needs to look good inside and out, and feel good to the touch. And, of course, the words need to be top-notch, and our editors are devoted to making that the case.

Service publisher

Children Fiction, Literary Fiction, Mind & Body, Mystery, Thriller, Horror & Suspense, Romantic Fiction, Science Fiction & Fantasy, YA Fiction, Biography & Memoir, Business & Money, Career & Success, Cookbooks, Food & Wine, Health, Fitness & Dieting, History, Journalism, Personal Growth & Self-Improvement, Politics & Social Sciences, Religion & Spirituality, Science, Society & Culture, Sports & Outdoors, Technology & the Future, Travel

Worldwide

eBooks2go logo eBooks2go

100 copies • Completed manuscript.
eBooks2go, Inc. was founded in 2011 to provide the missing link for all your publishing needs. Our end-to-end solutions provide the guidance and support that enable publishers and independent authors to pursue their passions. To date, we have helped more than 750 authors and 100 publishers worldwide. We offer an array of simple and affordable solutions to assist self-publishing authors at every stage of the book publishing process. Our comprehensive service offering includes editing, print and eBook production, book marketing, cover designs, ISBN registration, and even website designs. We are a single source for all of your publishing needs.

Service publisher

Children Fiction, Literary Fiction, Mind & Body, Mystery, Thriller, Horror & Suspense, Romantic Fiction, Science Fiction & Fantasy, YA Fiction, Biography & Memoir, Business & Money, Career & Success, Cookbooks, Food & Wine, Health, Fitness & Dieting, History, Journalism, Personal Growth & Self-Improvement, Politics & Social Sciences, Religion & Spirituality, Science, Society & Culture, Sports & Outdoors, Technology & the Future, Travel

Worldwide


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  • Bethany Marshall
    on Sept. 18, 2023, 5:16 p.m.

    Congratulations Fonz! I can't wait to see your book in print and I look forward to following your journey towards publishing 📚

  • Olivia Lucas
    on Oct. 4, 2023, 1:36 p.m.

    Great talk at the What If conference! Looking forward to the book.

  • Love Chery
    on Nov. 4, 2023, 6:38 p.m.

    Hi, Fonz!

    I saw your talk on Growth Design at AFROTECH in Austin, TX, and felt deeply connected to the concept. I am in a dual MBA/MA in Design Leadership through the Johns Hopkins University and MICA. My studies are literally grounded in the intersection between business and design so I am very eager to read your book. Hopefully we get a chance to connect in the not-so-distant future!

    Thank you so much for your insights, and for sharing your experiences. Your presence and engagement have truly inspired my design career path.

    Sincerely,

    Love Iris Chery
    LinkedIn.com/in/love-iris-chery

  • Phillip Walker
    on Nov. 7, 2023, 5:08 p.m.

    Had to opportunity to hear Fonz speak at AfroTech on Growth & Retain. Very impactful discussion that correlated with things that will guide me in my current capacity as a Product Manager. Thank you!

  • Brady Jones
    on Nov. 22, 2023, 1:21 a.m.

    Fonz continues to impress as he adds accolade after accolade! “Self Design” promises to be an inspirationally, innovative literary work told by one of America’s emerging voices.