I’m going to succeed because I’m crazy enough to think that I can!


I don’t know who said that; I wish I did.  Bit it is true!  In this day and age, in this time of economic uncertainty, I’ve started my own self-publishing small press.  Slowly, but surely, I am building an author list. It will take time, being slightly crazy and having uber amounts of determination, guts and belief.

 

One of my favorite poems of all time is by Edgar Guest.  Here it is in part:

Somebody said that it couldn’t be done,

But, he with a chuckle replied

That “maybe it couldn’t,” but he would be one

Who wouldn’t say so till he’d tried.

So he buckled right in with the trace of a grin

On his face. If he worried he hid it.

He started to sing as he tackled the thing

That couldn’t be done, and he did it.

 

Another favorite of mine is:

TRIUMPH is just UMPH! added to TRY!

 

Yup, believe in that one too!

 

One of the things I’ve learned sitting behind the ‘publisher’s desk’ is that one of my most important jobs is ‘encourager.’  I hear questions like

“I want to write a book and I think I can.  Do you think I can?”

or

“I really want to get my book published, but I can’t afford it right now.”

or

“My family isn’t terribly supportive of this idea and now they have me worrying that…”

Sometimes, as a part of the ‘encourager role,’ role is listening and then imparting (or doing my best to impart) the courage part of the word.  New projects, new adventures, new businesses take that initial vision, a bucketful of guts and a whole lake of I wills swimming around with I cans. 

Today I was on the phone with an author who has a dynamite idea for a series of books, has the basic outlines in place, just doesn’t have the funding…yet.  Her family is extremely hesitant to help her out but she is not giving up. Well, she isn’t now.  She’ll keep working on the books so that when the time comes, she will be ready to go forward.  Might be a month from now or maybe two years from now. 

The point is that she isn’t giving up on the idea,  She still is working towards it tho and quite frankly, the dreams we work the hardest to accomplish are the ones we appreciate the most and get the biggest thrill out of!  I can attest to that first hand!

Another poem comes to mind, one by Danish poet, Piet Hein:

Put up in a place that is easy to see

the cryptic admonishment: TTT.

When you feel how depressingly slowly you climb;

it is well to remember that

THINGS

TAKE

TIME.

Yep they do!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Proofread vs proof-read

Someone mentioned to me recently that I obviously don’t know how to  ‘proofread’ my website because I had the word, proofread, spelled ‘proof-read.’  Silly me to try to make a point that proofing a manuscript is more than spell-checking it; it requires READING it. 

Spell checkers are a marvelous invention, but they will not catch mistakes where the wrong spelling of a word is used.  When proofreading, your eye must look for the instances like lying prostate during a prostrate exam. HUH? *grin*  Reading the work aloud helps.  Reading it backwards helps. 

“Did John get too work today.” He asked? <——–Spell checks didn’t catch this. “Did John get to work today?” he asked.

“I here the winds hear were terrible.  Its sad that the tornado came.  It’s path was devastating. It is to bad you’re house was in it’s path. You’re insurance should cover it. Your meeting with the adjuster today, right?”  <——-or these.  “I hear the winds here were terrible.  It’s sad that the tornado came.  Its path was devastating. It is too bad your house was in its path. Your insurance should cover it.  You’re meeting with the adjuster today, right?”

No one is perfect. And these are little things.  But they grow exponentially  when they are in your book or paper.  Simple fix.  ProofREAD! *smile*

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I Love Being a Pole Barn Publisher!

Our open house yesterday was a smashing success! We had fifty-two people here at one point and there were people everywhere!  Last week someone ‘elsewhere’ tried to disparage Wynwidyn Press for being located in a ‘pole barn.’  We got so many comments last night about what a wonderful little place we have here, how it is so creative and how it exudes such a warm and inviting feel.  I was told that it was a clever thing to do as it obviously keeps the overhead down, but that once inside, one would never know it was a ‘pole barn.’

Sure made me happy and we have all worked hard to make this place exactly what it is and to reflect who and what we are. 

But it also has made me think about the world and websites and how it is what one says and does that truly reflects the depth of a person or their company.  I’ve been told that I should answer any and every question someone might have on my company website.  I disagree.  I think a website should have enough to get someone’s attention, give them the basics and then, if they are interested, they will call.  If they have questions, we can answer them. In detail.  I would far rather talk to an author.  Any author should have more questions.  I would.

Not every self-publishing company will appeal to every author.  That is why there is room for all of us.  We offer different packages and options.  We compete, sure, but isn’t that what should make each of us better at what we do? Competition should be a healthy incentive to always do our best by our customers.

Meanwhile, back to yesterday…

So much fun to see the kids that came curled up in various places reading the Alyndoria books.  Various authors came to check us out!  Mara McBain came as did Adriana Noir! It was fun seeing and meeting fellow writing.com authors! Author Peggy Grigowski came and helped out and was such a phenomenal help! Thanking you all!

 

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Grand Openings

Our Grand Opening is tomorrow.  June 21st, 2012.  Grand is one of those words that has multiple meanings for me.

My grandchildren call me ‘Grand.’

“How do you like being a grandmother?”

“It is just grand!” And it is.  A long time ago, in a book by Madeleine L’Engle – one of her later ones, I believe, the one character called her grandmother that.  As a ten year old, I thought that when I was all grown up, I wanted my grandchildren to call me ‘Grand.’ Well, I’m not quite sure, at the grand and glorious age of 58, if I am all grown up, (don’t think so) but the kids do  call me Grand!

Grand can imply huge and glorious and fantastic.  Our Grand Opening of Wynwidyn Press will be huge FOR me.  My dream is coming true which is glorious. That it is happening at all is fantastic. If it weren’t for a wonderful sister-in-law who invested several err grand into Wynwidyn Press, I would still be at the dream stage.

I have no clue outside of family, friends and my authors (How cool is that??? My authors! LOVE it!) how many folks are coming or will show up.  Wouldn’t it be just grand if an extra ten or twenty or 5349 people wandered in?  I truly hope some people (that I do not know) want to know who and what we are and come by.  That would be GRAND!

Then there is the difference between ‘an opening’ and a ‘grand opening.’  What makes one grander than the other?  Balloons billowing overhead?  A brass band or heraldic trumpeters?  Super-extra-special-today-only prices?

We’ve got a really awesome cake coming!  Super authors.  Great deals on books.  If someone were to come and then come back with a book, we’d give them a $100.00 discount–no, NOT a grand! We DO need to make money, after all, this is a business!

But then again, our ‘opening’ WILL be GRAND!  Why? Because Wynwidyn Press is people who have heart. We believe in our authors.  We understand our authors because we are writers too.  We understand the heart, hard work and joy that goes into a book. We ‘get it!’

Someday, down the road a bit, when we have lots and lots of followers, perhaps someone will happen upon this blog and think that we might just be the self-publisher for them.  They might call, or drop in and see just what we are all about.  They might sign up with us and soon be holding their book in their hands. Hopefully, they’d mention this particular blog.  They’d still get the discount…but that is not the point.  For someone to see this months from now and want us to do their book…that…that…THAT would be just GRAND!

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Directions

Every now and then, one finds themselves at a crossroads.  The way behind, for whatever reason, has a big ‘CLOSED TO ALL WANDERING TRAFFIC’ sign across it.  The way ahead has a detour sign pointing off in new directions.  The ‘indecision-what do I do now’ meter wavers back and forth until the internal clock-work spring sproings and one is left sitting bemused at the intersection of ‘What Was’ and ‘What Could Be.’

So I thought, considered, dreamed and wondered.  Then after a few choice comments from wonderful friends and a well-placed boot in the butt from my dear sister-in-law, the thoughts became coherent and I had…


My Epiphany

Sometimes,
if one is fortunate, perhaps,
or brave, or
maybe
just determined,
life happens in a specific way to lead you,
with flashing arrows
(should you choose to look)
down a specific path, and looking
back you wonder
how you could possibly have missed the signs.

I am leaping and this Robin
shall grow wings in the leaping,
as I fly towards
this dream, long sleeping,
but now awakened
as the rubble fell around me;
crashing,
crushing one dream, and yet, in
the ‘all things for a reason’ vein
bleeding into another
which shall grow from salt watered tears, but more,
from the knowing that
it is time
I fly.

I know how to do what I need to do and what I may not know, I am good at finding folks who do.  More importantly, I know what NOT to do.  I’ve learned much about people and customer service and I certainly know/understand/get writers.

Writers.  We are an interesting, creative, not always logical, emotional breed.  I love working with creative souls.  Surrounding myself with creative souls who can market and edit and do all sorts of amazing things her at Wynwidyn Press is such an experience.  I am living the dream and loving it!

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Welcome to the Words of Wynwidyn

Well.  Blogs are cool and fun and all that.  I usually write newsletters, but this will be a combination of random thoughts, thoughts on writing and ideas about publishing, getting manuscripts ready for the next step or fun happenings going on at Wynwidyn Press!  It is a dream finally coming true to have my own small press.  Up front, we are a pay to publish self-publishing enterprise.  We do all the editing, layouts, cover designs, ISBNs that one needs to get published the self-publishing way and are a good fit for those who do not want to do all that themselves.  We also offer marketing and all sorts of good stuff all of which is explained on our website http://www.wynwidynpress.com.

Having said all that, feel free to go check it out!

On to the dream.  Frankly, it is a scary thing to decide to open your own business; to take that extraordinary leap of faith and pray that the sky-hooks miraculously appear and that all will go well. It takes time.  I know that.  But we do have authors, and we have books out (check out http://www.alyndoria.com) as well as several other books coming out in the next few months. *big smile*

There is something very precious and special about watching the emotions play across the face of a writer beginning to consider the possibilities of actually being published, or seeing an author holding his book in his hands for the first time. Joy, sheer delight, almost a giddiness comes over them and you can almost see their inner self leaping and dancing.  These moment are what I love about what I do.  There are those who scoff at self-publishing or call it a vanity press.  Published is published.  Either one can submit manuscripts numerous times, maybe get accepted, possibly get an advance.  Of course that advance is against the royalties you hope to accrue when the book is a smashing success.  If it is.  There are no guarantees at either end of the spectrum. Or, one can invest in themselves, take that leap and then work like the dickens to do what it takes to give it a shot.

Writers write because we can’t not write.  Once the book is in the author’s hands, then the work starts.  Book signings, marketing, doing what it takes to get the book out there.  We work very hard to help our authors succeed.  We don’t toss events at an author and send them on their way; we teach you how to do the interviews, signings, events etc.  Oh and we charge extra for that, right? NOPE!  Because, this whole process is, for me, what it is all about.  Sure we all want to make some money… but I want authors to succeed, to be happy and feel excited about what they have done, are doing and will continue to do.

That’s why I started my company!!!

R

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