The New Year is always a time to reflect on the previous year and set goals for going forward. But before I do that, I have decided to go back a bit further and talk about how we got started here at Windy Sea Publishing and who we are.
How we got started
I decided to start my publishing house in 2019 as I was going through the process of publishing my first novel. I had weighed the benefits and costs of submitting my manuscript to an agent, one of the Big 5 publishing houses, to a smaller hybrid publisher, or to self-publish. I attended several writing conferences, talked with many agents, received feedback on my work from those agents, and ultimately decided to self-publish. It was not an easy decision.
In the end, I chose self-publishing partially because the books I was writing, historical adventure fiction, did not fit the mainstream trends in a very competitive market. The other reason for choosing this path is control. I wanted to have control over the cover, layout, design, branding, and royalties. I was also important to me that my book content and quality would rival that of the more traditionally published books. I had seen too many self-published books with poor formatting and image quality, loaded with repetitive words and grammatical mistakes.
So, I set out to learn the industry. I knew there would be a lot I needed to learn, but I was not prepared for how much there was to learn. But I have always loved learning, anything and everything. I looked forward to returning to school after breaks when most students didn’t. I loved my college courses (mostly) and have continued to learn ever since. It is one of the reasons I went into teaching and taught for fourteen years before deciding to write and publish full-time.
It has taken a great deal of work, and I have made some mistakes along the way, but I have learned from them, corrected them, and moved forward. And now I have been able to help other authors get their stories into publication too.
Why Windy Sea Publishing when I am based out of the desert city of Tucson, Arizona?
Names are important, whether for people, books, or businesses. Names have meaning. They can inform us, attract our attention for good or ill, and inspire us. I spent days trying to find a name that resonated.
Water has always inspired me, especially the Sea of Cortez where I have been blessed to spend a lot of time throughout the years. Many of my best ideas have come during long walks on the beach, sitting watching the waves crash onto the shore, or watching the spectacular sunsets painting sky and sea in brilliant colors. The sea is never the same either, no matter how many times I return. Each day is different. The sea changes throughout the day too invoking different emotions, dreams, and inspirations.
What better name could there be for a publishing house trying to capture those dreams and inspirations to share with others?
And our slogan is similar. Where Stories Take Flight; like the pelicans, sea gulls, herons, and multitudes of other fowl that inhabit the seashore; like our dreams and aspirations when we pour our hearts out onto the page hoping to create something that others will want to read.
Who we are and why our stories matter
Most of the authors, editors, and marketing associates involved with Windy Sea Publishing were teachers in the traditional sense and have continued to teach formally or informally in our roles in the publishing business. We all have a love of learning and a heart to help students of all ages learn knowledge and skills needed to better understand others and the world we inhabit.
Story is what makes us human … Recent break-throughs in neuroscience reveal that our brain is hardwired to respond to story … we’re wired to turn to story to teach us the way of the world. – Lisa Cron, Wired for Story, 2012
While the stories we choose to publish should engage and entertain our readers, we also look for stories that teach, enlighten, and empower our readers to see the world from a different perspective, to gain knowledge, to develop higher order thinking skills, to acquire wisdom, integrity, and self-awareness.
We want stories that take us places we’ve never been - to distant times, different cultures or worlds, mysterious or enchanted places; that inspire us to fight for a cause worth winning; that make us feel strong emotions so we can live, love, and heal. We want stories that will make us better people; that will help us soar to greater heights, dream bigger dreams, and achieve greater goals. We want stories that make us more human and teach us the way of the world.
As for looking forward to the new year, we have updated the graphics on our website. If you are interested, click the link to check it out, then simply reply to this email to let us know what you think.
Next week, we will review 2023 and let you know what’s coming for 2024.
Happy New Year!