Tag Archives | small presses

How I want to be when I grow up.

So I had no idea what to expect from the New England SCBWI conference. No clue. This year was different. I was so curious to see if there were any other self publishers. Writers I could talk crazy with about coding and html and marketing and price points. And how’d you do this and how’d you do that. And oh, wow I had trouble with that too….etc. I’ll be honest, I didn’t find too many.

But there were hundreds there and I just might’ve missed ‘em by a few seconds. Who knows?

I’ll tell you a secret that I only admitted to my roomies. I was a little nervous about how I would feel. There’s this little thing I call the residual-effect-of-spending-years-querying-agents-and-thinking-traditional-was-the-only-way-to-go. And I’ll be truthful. I felt it a teensy weensy bit. But it in no way made me doubt the path I’ve chosen.

If there were small twinges, lingering – one conversation took care of it all. Here’s the highlight, my friends. We ran into a long time author who has published with multiple houses, ghostwritten popular series, and is one of the most real people I’ve met. She’s had some great publishing experiences and some not-so-great. She’s self-publishing her backlist. And she encouraged us 100% percent to go for it as far as publishing our own work.

That was cool.

When I grow up and have years behind me in this industry, I want to be like her. Positive. Honest. Encouraging. Friendly. To all writers.

How about you? What do you want to be like twenty years down the road at a conference?

If you’d like to help by posting on May 7th about the official book release of A Spy Like Me, and the start of the Spies, Murder and Mystery Marathon blog series – and you haven’t already signed up – just leave your email in the comments or send me a message through the contact form! I would really appreciate your help!

Comments { 28 }

The secret is out! My good news!

I signed my first book contract! Yay!

Here’s the official PM announcement that several of you pointed out to me!

Children’s: Middle grade

Laura Pauling’s HOW TO SURVIVE ANCIENT SPELLS AND CRAZY KINGS, convinced that her grandfather needs help, a twelve-year-old persuades her family to fly to the Mayan ruins of Tikal on a search and rescue mission; she and her brainy cousin sneak out and follow the clues to the ancient Maya city of Etza, where the people haven’t aged in 2,000 years; due to an ancient prophecy she must hurry…in three days the city will be destroyed, to Jennifer Carson at Pugalicious Press, in a nice deal, for publication in November 2012.

What can I say? It was a now or never kind of deal for me, especially with the whole 2012 Mayan apocalypse. I love this story. I love the philosophy behind Pugalicious Press so I went for it! There’s a longer story behind this story but that can come later.

Okay, and it was kinda cool to see the announcement.

I do feel like a total newbie at the announcement thing. People tweeted and emailed me before I knew it was out! Talk about bad planning. But better late than never. And thank you to anyone who emailed or tweeted their congrats!

I’m really excited to see this story out in the world next fall.

If we survive the apocalypse…

Check out the announcement on Pugalicious Press. I’m officially in the doghouse. Woo hoo!

Any questions about it? Ask away in the comments.

Comments { 65 }

Jennifer Carson (speaking from the heart)

Jennifer Carson, author of To Find A Wonder,  is a friend, critique partner, and a talented artist who is going places with her art and her writing. Today, she’s going to be speaking from the heart about her decision to go with a small press. Click over to her website to learn more about her.

Why a small press?

Authors choose small presses for lots of reasons. And the reasons are as different as the authors. For me choosing a small press was the best choice for me at the time. I looked at it as a stepping-stone, a way to get my voice and imagination out there to an audience wider than my critique groups and family.

To be completely honest, deciding to go with a small publisher felt a little like giving up at first. My manuscript, To Find A Wonder, had just been passed over by a large publishing house, and for no other reason than the economy. The editor loved the storyline and the writing, but felt that it would be too difficult to fight to bring a new author into the house—the economy had just bottomed out and everyone was very scared.

I could’ve held onto the manuscript and waited for the economy to bounce back, but I was ready to move forward. I’m impatient, and I had big plans for this story. So, I submitted it to two different small presses, one being LL Dreamspell out of Texas. I received contract offers from both, but decided to go with LL Dreamspell because I had other writing friends who had worked with them and were happy. The contract was straight forward and fair, I could choose my own illustrator, they weren’t going to interfere with my marketing plans, and they publishing schedule was tight.  I wouldn’t have to wait two years to see my words in print. All of these things were a bonus.

From my small press I received a small advance, about 50, very nice posters of the cover of my book, 5 copies of the finished product and a press release.  This may not seem like much, but other than the number of copies and the amount of the advance, I don’t think much else happens from a big house for a first time author either.  Marketing has fallen into the laps of the authors.

There were a few small disappointments working with a small press: I didn’t get my illustrators name on the cover of the book, my title and name isn’t on the spine of the book, and I would’ve liked to have had more illustrations, but all in all my experience was great. The editing process was quick, and once the book was edited it came together very quickly, publishing in September 2009 instead of the November 2009 goal.  And, it is a very pretty book! It is worth every bit of the $9.95 retail price.

Now that I have a book out, I’m shooting for a larger press for my next story, but if things don’t pan out the way I’d like them too, I wouldn’t hesitate to go the small press route again. For most of us, marketing is the key to gathering a reading audience.

I’ll be talking about marketing at my blog, join me there! And then head over to My Writing Journey to learn more about me in an interview! And click here for a chance to win her book!

Thanks Jennifer for sharing your heart on this timely topic. Any questions for Jennifer? Ask away in the comments box!

Comments { 15 }