"Write, write, write," he said. Ignore the wind and the waves and write.

Houston's books available from: Your local bookstore, all on-line bookstores or click here at: (Just Dust Publishers)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Publishing--which way do I turn?

It seems I have been mysteriously silent about my conference experiences and publishing. So many options and avenues have been tried since then that I was in a quandary what to share with serious readers on this page. I've decided to update my followers with info I am finding most helpful, but my final conclusions are not yet drawn. (I am defining some of the terms that are new to me in this process of publishing to be clear as to what I mean.)

First, the Mt Hermon Conference.
With all the wondrous beauty of the grounds and new friends found, I can say the time there was well spent. I also made a connection with a missionary who has established a press (actual facility that prints books and ships them out) in Bulgaria. Amazing! She thought the quality of the production has grown to be comparable with presses world wide and that she could have my book printed and delivered for about $3 a book. Amazing. This might be the best deal I have found and I will be staying in touch with her on this and looking into her presses services.

I also met with an editor who was interested in seeing a proposal I pitched (verbally presented to her over lunch as a possibility for her publishing house to produce and carry as one of their books.) I felt comfortable right away with her, even told her one of my true confession type stories about a slip I had made in the church parking lot one day. I think making a connection with an editor can be pivotal as to whether I will feel comfortable long-term in dealing with the publishing house (companies in the industry of publishing.) Of course, the same might be true as to whether or not the editor is interested in dealing with you. We'll see.

The pitch I made detailed a devotional book I have been thinking about compiling for some time. Since I have written many devotionals, I hope to have the skills to compile a book for a niche market, mothers of special needs children. I expanded on the idea and she liked it. She said I could send her a proposal (a 30 page document defining the book and the market, my qualifications and history and several more relevant items of information.) This formal request is what she will take to the publishing company's team that decides if the book is the kind of thing they want to publish and if it will be profitable for the company.

This last consideration, whether it will be profitable, sounds cut throat, but get the stars out of your eyes. How many of us would be writing much if we were not compensated in some way? The truth is, we all have mouths to feed, even if they are our own. I fully understand, being a business major in school, the necessity of making a book pay (although, I would hazard a guess that sometimes a publisher chooses to publish a book because it is too good not to, and plans to eat the cost--they just can't do that often.)

I was very happy to get the invitation to send the proposal, even knowing I had lots of work ahead of me. A month later, I still am working on the proposal. Perhaps I have waited too long for her to be interested! Well, many things have happened since talking to that editor and I could not spare the time before now. I will explain more as I continue this train of thought on publishing in future posts. Tomorrow I will finish up Mt Hermon and why traditional publishing may not be the best choice in every situation.

Next, Orange County Christian Writer's Conference. Soon POD and self publishing.

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