My guest today is Joan De La Haye, author of Shadows and co-founder of Rebel E Publishers. Joan writes:
When I finished writing Shadows, I hit a few brick walls. Which left me feeling less than positive about my writing career. It also left me thinking that there had to be an easier way of doing this. It took me a few months to come up with a solution for my dilemma. I also used that time to lick my wounds. Bruised egos take a while to heal.
Luckily, I had received positive feedback from a big, mainstream publishing house, so I had an inkling that my book was viable and that it didn’t belong in the dustbin. Thinking that way also helps the bruised ego heal faster. I think if I’d only received form rejection notes, I may have decided to do things differently.
So I took matters into my own hands. What can I say? I’m an impatient, control freak who doesn’t believe in waiting around for someone else to take control of my future. I also believe in dragging others into my crazy hair-brained schemes, to which my wonderful business partner, Caroline Addenbrooke, can attest. I twisted Caroline’s rubber arm into starting an e-book publishing company, which we called Rebel e Publishers. We felt that we were being rather rebellious and that the company title should represent that.
We were then lucky enough to find an amazing editor, Jayne Southern, who jumped on board our crazy train without a second’s thought. Without her, our books wouldn’t be as good as they are. She asks the tough questions, that we writers try to avoid. Having a professional editor on board also gave us a bit more credibility.
The reasons behind taking the e-book route were very logical. With e-books we weren’t limited by our geography: being in South Africa means that we’re very far away from the rest of the world. Being on-line and digital puts us on everybody’s doorstep. We’re now just a download away.
Another reason was the financial benefit. Opting for the e-book route meant our overheads were now much lower. Our main costs are our website and book covers. Being in South Africa, we get our ISBN numbers for free. Big bonus! As a result we don’t overprice our books. So we and the reader win.
Going the DIY route in publishing is not for everybody, but it was perfect for me. Having my own publishing company as well as being a writer gives me an interesting perspective on the industry. That perspective also helps when I’m working with another writer on getting their book out into the world. I know what they’ve been through and what they’re going to go through. I love that I can now help someone else through that birthing process and that someone else can benefit from what I’ve learnt along the line.
If you want to learn more about our rebellious little publishing company, you can find us at Rebel E Publishers
You can find out more about starting an epublishing business here: http://marketingfloozy.wordpress.com/2008/12/31/a-cheapskate-guide-to-creating-a-publishing-company/
See also: Pat Bertram Introduces Jack, the Torment Demon from Shadows by Joan De La Haye
On Writing Shadows by Joan De La Haye