In my previous posts in this series [The First Cut is the Deepest; Calling All Agents], I addressed my hunt for an agent. Having invested the better part of a year with little to show for my efforts, by the end of 2013, I knew it was time to take a different approach. Determining what—and who—that meant was the next step in my journey.
As luck would have it, in February 2014, The Writers’ Union of Canada (TWUC) was presenting a one-day Publishing 2.0 Workshop at Ryerson University in Toronto. I’m not a member of TWUC (to be eligible, you need at least one published novel), but the seminar was open to non-members. The presenters were award-winning author Caroline Adderson, presenting the Traditional Path to Publication, and traditionally published and self-published award-winning author Mary W. Walters, speaking to the growing practice of Independent Publication. I signed up.
The experience was invaluable. Caroline Adderson covered working with an agent; keys to a successful submission; contract terms for print and electronic rights; working with an in-house editor; involvement in the publishing process; and working with an in-house publicist. Mary W. Walters covered options for funding, including crowdsourcing; print on demand and e-book formats; being your own editor or hiring an editor; managing your digital rights; the importance of metadata; doing the design work; pricing and selling/distribution; and self-promotion.
While Mary W. Walters made a convincing argument for self-publishing, my heart was still set on getting accepted in the traditional manner. Caroline Adderson’s suggestion of searching for a small press publisher, versus trying for an agent as a newbie writer, resonated. Especially since this callout had just been posted on the Sisters in Crime Guppies Yahoo Digest: Barking Rain Press is open for submissions through the month of February 2014. It had been quickly followed up with this post by author James M. Jackson: If anyone is interested in Barking Rain Press we have a number of Guppies who have published with them: Ricky Bush, Edith Maxwell (writing as Tace Baker), Kaye George and me. Feel free to ask any one of us questions if you have them. Jim.
And that’s the wonderful thing about belonging to an association of like-minded folks. I’d already taken Jim up on his offer, and emailed him, Ricky, Edith and Kaye. To a person, their experience with Barking Rain Press had been positive.
I was equally impressed with BRP’s website, which offers free four-chapter previews of all of their books and a lot of information on the company’s philosophy and processes. Convinced I’d found the right home for The Hanged Man’s Noose, I proceeded to their Submission Guidelines. In my next post, I’ll share my journey, from submission to acceptance.
Stay tuned! And if you get a chance, check out the books by the authors mentioned in this post, as well as the many other authors represented by Barking Rain Press. You won’t be disappointed.
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