Sunday, June 03, 2007

Medusa College

Here is the list I handed out during LitFest for anyone who would like a lead on good study materials.

Favorite Books:

1. Publishing for Profit: Bottom Line Management for Book Publishers
By Thomas Woll
2. Self Publishing Manual: How to Write, Print and Sell Your Book
By Dan Poynter
3. The Pre-Publishing Handbook: What you should know before you
publish your first book. By Patricia J. Bell
4. Book Design and Production. By Pete Masterson
5. The Writers Legal Guide. By Tad Crawford and Kay Murray
6. Business and Legal Forms for Authors and Publishers.
By Tad Crawford
7. Small Business Kit for Dummies. By Richard D. Harroch.

Favorite Web Sites:

1. Para Publishing:
2. Small Publishers Association of America:
3. Publish L:
4. POD Critic:
5. Independent Book Publishers Association:
6. Miss Snark:
7. Independent Publisher:
8. Guerrilla Press:
9. Emerging Writers Network:
10. Council of Literary Magazines and Small Presses:
11. Book Ninja:
12. Book Industry Study Group:
13. Bay Area Independent Publishers Assoc.
14. Aeonix:


When I got home from LitFest last night, my muse was waiting for me at the front door.

"What's up?" I asked, setting down my book bag.

She folded her arms and tapped her right foot. "What's up? What do you think? What was all that, 'I don't belong here... what do I know about anything... why am I hear...' crap?"

"What are you talking about?"

"You're insecurity was so palpable I could feel it all the way back to your house! Please explain why I have to keep bolstering your ego so you can walk out the front door!"

I walked toward the kitchen. "Is that what you call criticising my work? Bolstering my ego? Please. Since when have you ever bolstered my ego?"

She followed close behind. "You've got to start believing you're a publisher and accept the fact you know what you're doing, otherwise this entire scheme of yours is going to collapse."

I turned on the kettle and then leaned against the stove. "You have no idea what it was like sitting on the panel, listening to the other publishers talk about their presses and all the things they know and all I could offer was a reading list of books I've studied. I felt like a moron."

"Where do you think the others got their info? Do you think they knew what they were doing when they decided to publish?"


"Exactly. They all started where you are now. But they succeeded. And you will too, unless you keep insisting you're not worthy of my patronage. Then I'll just have to find someone more empowered."

I grinned. I can't help but laugh at the way my muse talks. Bolster my ego? Patronage? Usually my muse throws insults at me while she sunbathes. But for some unknown reason, I love every snake on her head.

All the snakes on her head stared at me. "You're laughing at me," she said.

"No, I'm not. I'm listening. And you're right. I have to start believing in myself. At least a little bit."

She stepped closer and put a hand on my arm. "I believe in you."

In all our time together, my muse has never spoken so kindly to me. I was mesmerized by her sea green eyes and the sincerity in her voice. My muse believes in me. That thought grew louder in my head and for one glorious moment, I believed I could successfully publish Laura's book.

Maybe I can. Maybe if I work hard enough, keep studying, and stay focused on creating the best book possible, I can keep Medusa's Muse alive. When fear and doubt get too loud, I will remember that moment when I understood how much faith my muse has in me. Perhaps that will help me have faith in myself. At least a little.

Friday, June 01, 2007

We Have A Web-Site!

My boy stayed up late to get the web site up in time for LitFest, and here it is:

It feels like a grand opening, like this is our storefront, complete with fire crackers to ward off evil spirits. There are still a few more boxes to unpack, a few more bits of decoration to add, but the door is open and the word is out.

My muse is pleased.

And just in time. LitFest is tomorrow and I will be a speaker on the publishing panel.

I'm a bit nervous. What do I really know about publishing, other than it is a ton of work and if you're not passionate about that work you should let someone else do it? But I'll write more about LitFest in another post. For now, tonight, I am enjoying staring at Medusa's image from my very own website. Thank you, Rick.