I followed her progress in subsequent classes and saw such a blossoming of the story. It's a simple tale, yet unique: the integration of cultures, the finding of oneself and home, all around her profession of music and storytelling.
Why did you decide on this press? How did you find out about them? Did you research others?
I decided to pursue North Star Press because two writers I knew and respected, one a friend and the other a writing teacher, had been published by them. I had done a lot of research about traditional publishers, small publishers, and agents, and had already gone down all of those roads. Amazingly, I had neglected to put North Star on my list despite what I thought had been exhaustive research.
When I finally thought about North Star, I recognized that it would be an ideal press for me and my story. For me because I am a first-time author and a small press would give me more attention. And for my story because North Star is based in outstate Minnesota, and my story is about moving to outstate Minnesota, so they would have the network to appeal a good portion of my target audience.
I started trying to get my book into the world by pursuing literary agents. I had initial success--a good 30-40 percent requested full manuscripts after I sent them my query letter.
From their responses, it became clear that my story, about a singer-songwriter moving from New York City to rural Minnesota for love, did not have enough appeal (read: potential book-buyers) for agents to approach their contacts at larger publishers.
This led me to start reaching out to smaller publishers.
They provided editing and all the backend work of getting my book into the world, in both print and electronic format.
I worked with a literary publicist to start my marketing campaign six months ahead of the publication date.
My book was not the literary blockbuster of my grandiose imaginings. It was only when I looked at the realities of my story, the book market, and who I am as an author, that I was successful in finding a publisher.
I am very happy to be with a smaller, Minnesota-based publisher, as I know they have the connections that are the best fit for my book.