Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Practical Self-Publishing

Ink and Paper Group, LLC, is proud to offer a new course for would-be publishers, "Practical Self-publishing: hands-on with all the challenges and opportunities."

A slew of books and web sites on self-publishing can still leave a would-be publisher feeling confused. The misuse of key terminology in advertising makes an already complex process more difficult still. This course will start at the beginning (How do I know if self-publishing is a good choice for me?) and move through all the options to publication including estimating costs and time involved, marketing plans, and sales forecasts. Students will see examples, discuss case studies, and can work on their own project proposals with feedback. Self-publishing is a great way to go—provided you are not guessing what to do.

Topics include:
- Publishing options: traditional, small press, subsidy, vanity, POD, self/independent
- Creating an ROI (Return on Investment)
- Estimating time involved
- Getting it done: identifying tasks, how to do it yourself, how to find skilled assistance
- Production: terms and choices
- Distribution, sales, marketing, and publicity
- Legal issues and subsidiary rights

Class will be held Wednesdays from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at 1825 SE 7th Avenue, Portland, OR 97214 on November 8, 15, 29, and December 6 and 13.
Cost is $100 per person. All materials included.

To register:
by e-mail: education@inkandpapergroup.com
by phone: 503.232.0103
by Internet: www.inkandpapergroup.com/class/self-publish.html

Friday, October 27, 2006

Can't Afford an Editor?

Many businesses seem to view an editor as a luxury--they better pinch their pennies and maybe someday they can afford one.

When you think about it, though, businesses cannot afford not to have an editor. An editor is an investment that pays you back. Your professional appearance is what potential clients and the general public base their opinions about you on, and their decision whether or not to work with you.

Are words a part of your professional appearance? Do you have a Web site, informational brochure, magazine, ad campaign, invoice practice, or a product that uses written words? Then you need an editor.

If your products and communications have spelling or grammar mistakes, you're telling your target audience that you are unprofessional. Not many people will invest in an unprofessional company or product.

Think about it. Invest in your professional appearance.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Call for Submissions--Ink-Filled Page

The Ink-Filled Page is a quarterly literary journal produced by Indigo Editing, LLC. At this point, the journal exists as an online presence with the hope to print an anthology annually. To sponsor an anthology or to get involved, e-mail amccart@indigoediting.com.

Literary Submissions:

Fiction submissions can be short stories or novel excerpts, and the nonfiction section is open to personal narratives and essays. While all genres are welcome, special interests include travel, multi-cultural themes, feminism, and young adult.

Limit submissions to 4,000 words, one submission per candidate per year.

Artwork submissions:

Open to all mediums and are selected based on composition and compatibility with selected literary submissions. Submit digital artwork at 300 dpi or higher. Three submissions per candidate per issue.

By submitting your work to the Ink-Filled Page, you are off ering first online and print publication rights. Rights revert to authors and artists after publication.

E-mail all submissions to editors@indigoediting.com with "Fiction Submission," "Nonfiction Submission," or "Artwork Submission" in the subject bar by November 30.

Editorial/Business Development Intern

Indigo Editing, LLC, is seeking an Editorial Intern to help with the editing business. Duties will include:

• Evaluating submissions for the Ink-Filled Page literary journal
• Editing selected submissions
• Author communications
• Researching links, bestsellers and book reviews, editorial tips, and events for the Web site
• Weekly Web site updates

This is an unpaid internship with the opportunity to earn college credit. Position will start as soon as possible. Some face-to-face meetings will be necessary, but most work will be done via e-mail. Candidates must be familiar with the Chicago Manual of Style.

E-mail resume and cover letter detailing your editing/publishing experience and goals to amccart@indigoediting.com with “Internship” in the subject bar.

http://www.indigoediting.comto learn more.

Stumptown Comic Fest 2006

Whether you create your own graphic novels or you just enjoy reading them, the Stumptown Comic Fest is your cup of tea. With special guests Kazu Kibuishi, Colleen Coover, and Paul Chadwick, the festival draws together publishers, artists, writers, and fans from across the country, showcasing new talent and upcoming releases of graphic novels and comic books. Come learn the tricks of the trade from published graphic novelists and local publishing houses.

Where: Oregon Convention Center
When: September 27th-28th
Admission: $5 per day
On Friday, attendees also have the option to purchase a weekend package for $10, which includes an official poster and pin featuring artwork by Aaron Renier, author of Spiral Bound (while supplies last).

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Local Poet's First Chapbook

Congratulations to Celeste Thompson, a local poet and PSU publishing student. Her first poetry chapbook, Rabbit Fur Purse, is being published by Finishing Line Press and will be released on December 8, 2006.

"Self-deprecating, funny, tender, careless, and incredibly caring, Celeste Thompson offers a refreshing new voice in Northwest poetry. Here is a world of food, jawbones, dogs, and furniture animated in absurd and very smart ways—and always on the line's light music. There are also wonderful human connections here between slugs and mothers, scandalous graffiti and Queen Nefertiti, disease and love. Most of all there's the courage to confess utter bewilderment and the profound revelation that her religion seems to be poetry." ~Henry Hughes, winner of the Oregon Book Award for his poetry collection, Men Holding Eggs

If you would like to take a closer look at this wonderful collection of poetry, go to: www.finishinglinepress.com. You can purchase a copy of Rabbit Fur Purse for $12, with free shipping if you buy it before November 15, 2006.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Question: Publishing vs. Self-Publishing

Mark asked: With so many self-publishing options available anymore, why should I seek a publisher? What's the advantage?

This is a great question because it is a huge topic of conversation in the writing and publishing communities. The following is a list of pros and cons of self-publishing to help aspiring authors make their decision. Basically, it comes down to your overall goals for the book--local vs. national audience, and amateur vs. professional production.


You have more control over your work, where it’s sold, how it’s edited and designed, and where it’s submitted for reviews. Resources are available through self-publishing companies to help you learn how to do this.

You receive a greater royalty percentage.

Most self-publishing companies will help you have an online presence at bookstores.

Self-publishing, especially through print on demand, is ideal for short print runs. If you only want a few hundred books published, POD offers an affordable option. Also, you don’t end up paying for books to be printed, paying for storing them, and then getting stuck with them if not all of them sell.

Quick publication time. How quickly your book gets out depends on how much time you spend on it. You could have it submitted into the POD database and have your marketing materials sent out in one month’s time.


You do not have access to a team of professionals to do all this for you. You will spend large amounts of time reading books and attending seminars to help you learn how to do these tasks yourself and even more time actually doing them yourself. You will also lack the established reputation a publisher has, which helps immensely when approaching retailers to buy your book.

You pay more money up front and do not receive an advance. Also, bookstores have the option to return books that are not selling as well as they hoped. When you go through a publisher, the publisher takes this financial hit. When you self-publish, you take it.

An online presence may not be enough. Few customers enter a bookstore with the name of a book they want to buy and request to order it. Instead, they have an idea of the type of book they want, they browse the bookshelves, and choose one to buy. If your book does not have a presence on the shelf, your sales will not be as strong.

Print runs that are 1,000 or more are not as economically productive when you print one at a time. You’d be looking at about $8.00 for printing of each book (according to lulu.com), whereas publishers who outsource large print runs to professional printers pay $2 or less per book, and you pay nothing. In addition, POD options usually use lower-quality paper, ink, and glue, so your books will not last as long. You can see the difference in quality.

A publishing house takes longer, often a year or more, because the staff is working on multiple books at a time and it simply takes longer to print 20,000+ books than it does to print one.
Publishers who focus on political books will have a shorter turn-around time because of the urgency of the reading trend, so they would work with you for quick release of the book, but it would probably still be a few months at least.

Here are a few more articles that consider the pros and cons of self-publishing:





Whatever you do, be sure to have your book professionally edited, designed, and printed. It will make all the difference when you approach bookstores about carrying your book.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Writer's Digest Popular Fiction Awards

The popular writing magazine Writer's Digest is holding a writing contest for the popular fiction categories of Romance, Mystery/Crime Fiction, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Thriller/Suspense, and Horror. Candidates can enter in every category, but be sure to limit your word count to 4,000. Entries are due by November 1, 2006.

Visit writersdigest.com for more information and to enter.

Good luck!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Spotlight on Portland Publishing Businesses

Ooligan Press, the premier student-run publishing company and master's program based here in Portland, is proud of the few alumni who made the news recently. The Portland Tribune recently featured an article on several Ooligan alumni who have prospered with their master's degrees in writing and publishing. Read the article, "Bound to Books," to see what Bernadette Baker, Gretchen Stelter, and Dave Cowsert have been up to in Portland's publishing scene.

Just a few other Ooligan alumni and students who are excelling in Portland's publishing community are:

Debbie Jayne, Kathryn Juergens, and Olivia Koivisto--Timber Press
Vinnie Kinsella--Book Editing instructor at Portland State University
Linda Meyer, Cameron Marschall, Bo Bjorn Johnson, and Allison Collins (in addition to Dave Cowsert)--Ink and Paper Group, LLC
Beth Caldwell Hoyt and Julie Steigerwaldt--Tall Grass Press
Richard Geller--Freelance publicist and writer

And there are many more in Portland and around the country. Great job!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Expand Your Vocab

Your English teacher used to tell you vocabulary was important, but you probably didn't believe her. I know when I studied weekly vocab lists, it was to pass the SAT. But now that you are a writer, do you wish you still had those vocabulary words?

A quick and easy way to expand your vocabulary is to sign up for dictionary.com's Word of the Day. You get one e-mail a day, unspammed, with a new word, its definition, several usage examples, and the history of the word.

It takes you, what, 30 seconds to read an e-mail? And you can almost feel your brain growing.

Check it out at Word of the Day.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A Great Reminder

I recently rediscovered this great article on Holt Uncensored. Pat Holt, former editor of The San Francisco Book Company and book editor of the San Francisco Chronicle, puts forward the top "Ten Mistakes Writers Don't See (But Can Easily Fix When They Do)." Although many of these mistakes are ones that we've heard before, the article is a great reminder and a great way to look at your writing in a new way. Take a look and use Holt's advice to freshen up your latest piece.

Click here to view the article.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Congratulations to Oregon Book Award Finalists!

The Literary Arts Council has just released finalists' names for the 2006 Oregon Book Award. Winners will be announced at the 20th Annual Oregon Book Awards ceremony on Friday, December 1st. For more details and to buy tickets, visit www.literary-arts.org or call 503-227-2583.

Congratulations to all the finalists. You've already achieved a great honor!

Stafford/Hall Award for Poetry

David Axelrod of La Grande, The Cartographer’s Melancholy (Eastern Washington University Press)
Dorianne Laux of Eugene, Facts About the Moon (Norton)
Paulann Petersen of Portland, A Bride of Narrow Escape (Cloudbank Books)
Vern Rutsala of Portland, How We Spent Our Time (The University of Akron Press)
Floyd Skloot of Portland, Approximately Paradise (Tupelo Press)
Matt Yurdana of Portland, Public Gestures (University of Tampa Press)

Ken Kesey Award for the Novel

Laila Lalami of Portland, Hope and Other Dangerous Pursuits (Algonquin Books)
Peter Rock of Portland, The Bewildered (MacAdam Cage)
Justin Tussing of Portland, The Best People in the World (Harper Collins)

H.L. Davis Award for Short Fiction

Tracy Daugherty of Corvallis, Late in the Standoff (Southern Methodist University Press)
Scott Nadelson of Portland, The Cantor’s Daughter (Hawthorne Books)
Gina Ochsner of Keizer, People I Wanted to Be (Houghton Mifflin/Mariner Books)
Geronimo G. Tagatac of Salem, The Weight of the Sun (Ooligan Press)

Frances Fuller Victor Award for General Nonfiction

Edwin L. Battistella of Astoria, Bad Language: Are Some Words Better than Others? (Oxford University Press)
Andrew Bernstein of Portland, Modern Passings: Death Rites, Politics, and Social Change in Imperial Japan (University of Hawaii Press)
Judy Blankenship of Portland, CaƱar: A Year in the Highlands of Ecuador (University of Texas Press)
William G. Robbins of Corvallis, Oregon: This Storied Land (Oregon Historical Society Press)
Dick Weissman of Portland, Which Side Are You On? An Inside History of the Folk Music Revival in America (Continuum)

Sarah Winnemucca Award for Creative Nonfiction

George W. Aguilar, Sr. of Warm Springs, When the River Ran Wild! Indian Traditions on the Mid-Columbia and the Warm Springs Reservation (Oregon Historical Society/University of Washington Press)
Brian Doyle of Portland, The Grail: A Year Ambling & Shambling Through an Oregon Vineyard in Pursuit of the Best Pinot Noir in the Whole Wild World (Oregon State University Press)
Kristin Kaye of Portland, Iron Maidens: The Celebration of the Most Awesome Female Muscle in the World (Thunder’s Mouth Press)

Eloise Jarvis McGraw Award for Children’s Literature

Susan Hill of Portland, Ruby Paints a Picture (Harper Collins)
Deborah Hopkinson of Corvallis, Sky Boys (Schwartz and Wade Books)
Allen Say of Portland, Kamishibai Man (Houghton Mifflin/Walter Lorraine Books)
Diane Siebert of Culver, Tour America (Chronicle Books)

Leslie Bradshaw Award for Young Adult Literature

Heather Vogel Frederick of Portland, Spy Mice: For Your Paws Only (Simon and Schuster)
Graham Salisbury of Portland, Eyes of the Emperor (Wendy Lamb Books)

Angus L. Bowmer Award for Drama

Doug Baldwin of Portland, Wrestling with Charlotte
Shelly Lipkin of Lake Oswego, Sylver Beach’s
Richard Moeschl of Ashland, Arthur’s Dreams
Keith J. Scales of Portland, What Mad Pursuit
Molly Best Tinsley of Ashland, Fission