The face of publishing
There are PODs and Vanity, self publishing and e-books. And in among
all the usual big houses are fascinating smaller presses, each with
their own style, focus and look. Book sales is a difficult market to
get into, a lot of work goes into each publication. They need and
deserve our support!
We enjoy working with these
presses and thought you might like getting to know them too.
This interview is with Alex Cole of
Capital Crime Press:
How did you begin?
We started Capital Crime Press because we
have a deep love of crime fiction
and have a strong desire to see more unique and interesting stories
told. I used to be a film producer, and there are quite a few similarities
between publishing and film production. In both cases you have
to find a well told story with a marketable hook that the public wants
to see. Since I'd done it in film, I felt pretty comfortable with the
aspect of finding good novels. The next step was finding good editors
and good distribution. None of the steps were easy, but I'm really
pleased with the results.
is involved in your company?
I'm the only full time employee. But we
have several hard working people who
work on our projects, from editors to cover designers and typesetters.
You have been very
successful for a brand new publishing company. Why do you think you have been so successful?
That's a hard question. I think it's a
combination of many things--the ability
to find talented writers with unique voices, a successful marketing
plan, reviewers who've championed our books because they enjoyed
them so much, readers who are willing to try new authors from small
presses, a bit of luck, and how hard our authors work to promote their
work. I think if we were missing any of these it would have been a much
harder road to travel.
What advice would you give
first time authors looking for their first publishers?
Study, study, study. If you don't know
what you're up against you don't have
much of a chance in this incredibly difficult business. Make sure your
book is as good as you can make it. Take writing classes and keep refining
your work. Go to writers conferences. There, you'll not only learn
about writing, you'll make connections to other writers, editors, and
agents. Networking is one of the keys to success. And lastly, study the
publishers you're interested in and follow their guidelines. We have submission
guidelines on our website, but only 10% of submissions actually
follow the whole set of guidelines. Read other books by the publisher
to make sure yours really fits in with what they're looking for.
On your submission page you
emphasize author's marketing ability. I can speak for Robert Fate's personal effort
on his Baby Shark series. How do your other authors react to this
Some understand why we emphasize it and
others can't stand the idea. But we're
looking for authors that have the whole package, including the desire,
time, and energy to promote their book. It's possible to sit at home
and wait for the world to come to you, but it's not likely. We really
believe in the personal connection. There are so many books published
every year that we believe you have to do everything you can to
make your books successful. That's what we put into the books, and we want
authors to feel the same way.
What is coming in 2007?
We have Troy Cook's second novel, The One
Minute Assassin, which is even better
than his multi award-winning debut, 47 Rules of Highly Effective Bank
We have a couple of debuts. The first is
Poison Pen, by Sheila Lowe. Sheila
is a renowned handwriting expert who's written an amazing new series.
It just received a starred review in Publishers Weekly.
Our next debut is
Murder...Suicide...Whatever..., by Gwen Freeman. The spunky
protagonist in this one is a riot. This story is a classic locked door
mystery, but with a quirky new millennium edge.
We have the second in Robert Fate's
highly acclaimed series, Baby Shark's
Beaumont Blues. Robert's second novel is proof positive that he's
going to be a hugely successful author. He followed up his first great
book with another great book.
are your long term goals for the company?
In film, independent production companies
are often the ones to discover new
talent. It's easier for them to take the risk than it is for huge multimedia
conglomerates. We want to do the same thing in publishing. We want
to be the ones to discover amazing, new talent. We want to discover the
stars of tomorrow.
So far, we're on track. In our first
year, we're very proud to have discovered
six new stars. These authors have amazing novels and have already
made a splash in the mystery world. They've received multiple awards
and nominations, have been chosen by the IMBA (Independent Mystery
Booksellers Assn.) as a "Killer Pick", have received rave reviews
in national publications such as Publishers Weekly, Library Journal
and Booklist. They've been optioned with major film production companies
and have become very popular with readers, selling out their first
print runs. They've also been bestsellers in many regional markets and
have appeared on numerous top ten lists.
But we still want more. We want to reach
more readers, and more bookstores,
and bring more entertainment. We still have much more to accomplish.
Thanks for your interest, Barb. If anyone
wants to know more about Capital
Crime Press, please visit www.capitalcrimepress.com