“Why write?” is easy. Most writers write because they have to. It is my preferred way to express myself. I’m not a great conversationalist. And, I’m an extreme introvert. More than one person at a time can overwhelm me. It takes too much energy to follow everything going on and I become exhausted. But, when I sit in front of my computer and type, I feel at home. I can go as fast as my reasonably agile fingers can type, or I can sit for 20 minutes until just the right word comes to me. I can revise until I feel that I have said what I wanted to say. And, then I can direct my creation to whomever I wanted the message to go. Simple.
But, why would a writer become a publisher? Yes, at first just for myself. I had a book that I thought people needed to have the opportunity to read. Originally, it was supposed to go just to family and friends of the person who asked me to complete his project. But, as I got into the story, I felt that it must be told. This was a story that should not be lost to history. Too important! I had neither the time or inclination to shop the manuscript around to traditional publishers, nor was I being paid to do so. But, I thought that I could get the book into a few more hands, and maybe some libraries, if I self-published. I wanted at least a few copies available for posterity, maybe someone would discover it in the future. Now, it looks like it will be far more than that. And I am grateful!
So, that explains the self-publishing. But, why form a publishing company and why work with other authors? Well, I think I’m a decent writer, and I write all the time. But, I have no illusions about being a great writer. Sometimes I look at something I wrote a few years ago — long enough to forget that I was the one who wrote it. And, sometimes I think it stands up reasonably well. But, would I buy this person’s next novel? Probably not. I do however, know someone who writes amazingly. Her writing consistently brings me tears, from amazement, or shared feeling, or just the sheer beauty of what she has to say. She is an award winning poet and acclaimed author. But, she has given up sending her manuscripts out to publishers. Too many rejections, too much time spent on things that are not writing. No money for an agent. But, she said; “well, if you could publish my book?” And, boy, do I want to. Just you wait!
I want you to be able to read her marvelous gifts to the world in prose and poetry.
And, by the way, don’t I also know this one person with an absolutely marvelous, illustrated children’s story that only her family have read to date? And, I know an artist whose creations are wining awards while her blog is challenging and bringing out the creativity in her dedicated audience. Maybe they need the encouragement to publish as well…
And, from there, Ann Carlson Publishing was born. I’m learning. There is so much to learn, but I think that I’ve come very far. If I can help just a few really incredible people get books into press that would not get there otherwise, then that will be enough.