Here's an excerpt from an interview with Brian Feinblum on BookMarketingBuzzBlog.
Interview With Michele Orwin, Publisher, Bacon Press Books
Michele, what are the rewards and challenges to leading an independent publishing company?
The rewards: I love discovering gifted authors who have written good books and making those books available to readers. I’ve been very lucky to have found a group of talented people to work with to make sure the books are done professionally. And the indie community has been very generous about sharing information and helping small publishers like me who are just starting out.
The challenges: Almost too many to list.
Finding authors with good, finished manuscripts who are ready to try independent publishing and understand the partnership model we’re using. Then finding readers when there are so many books to choose from.
Working almost counter to some authors’ fantasies of what being published is going to be like. Sometimes emerging authors hope the book they’ve written is perfect and doesn’t need professional editing. Or that their book will be an immediate success - friends and strangers will rush to buy it and will be eager to write great reviews. That can happen. But more often it doesn’t. And last is the fantasy that the book will somehow sell itself. Maybe the hardest for me and our authors is understanding that it all takes time. Time to build a reputation, time to find the right readers.
What are some of your most successful books? In this super competitive publishing world, I think any kind of exposure, sales or reviews for a first-time author are great. I know other people measure success differently. Our nonfiction book, In Search of the Fun-Forever Job by Ellis Chase is the overall most successful. Great reviews from both respected people in the field and readers. Sales every month. Quite a few bulk orders. Ellis is also the only author who does a blog post every week. He’s active on social media, and he has a lot of speaking engagements. Plus it’s nonfiction on a topic of interest. It’s well-written and has a great cover. All those things don’t come together that often. I think our newest book, Identity Thief by JP Bloch, will do really well. It’s a fast-paced, psychological thriller - a popular genre. Early reviews and sales are excellent. The book that’s coming next, Landfall by Joseph Jablonski has a real shot. It’s beautifully written and an unusual story. The debut short story collection, The Man Who Built Boxes by Frank Tavares, has more than one hundred reader reviews. Not all of them great, but at least it means readers are taking notice. Short stories are a tough sell even for seasoned authors. For me, the other books have had some success, considering they’re from first-time authors. They’ve gotten very positive reviews. Man from the Sky by Danny Wynn is a novella. Blues for Beginners by Judith Podell is a collection of funny short stories. And The Clear Blue Line by Al Sprague is an action/adventure story set in Panama in the 1970’s. We thought with a lot of sex and sharks, it was bound to be a best seller but it’s too early to tell.
Read the rest of the interview here