About ten years ago I wrote a technical book intended for a relatively small group of professional people. A few months after the book was published I happened to walk through a room where a number of folks were gathered for a conference and there was a fellow sitting at a table totally engrossed in reading my book. While the book had sold remarkably well in my view, it was quite a different experience to encounter someone actually reading it. In a different sort of way, I suddenly became a real writer.
Now, a decade later, I’ve had a similar sort of an experience that made me feel like a real publisher. I was sitting at my computer, checking out the homepage on our Second Wind website when a co-worker (who had never even heard of 2W) came up behind me and glanced over my shoulder.
“Oh,” she exclaimed, “I’ve read that book.”
“What book?” I asked, startled.
“Are you sure it’s this book?” There was disbelief in my voice.
“Sure. I recognize the cover. It’s the first Michael Chambers book.”
I had the strangest feeling deep inside. “Oh my god,” I said to myself, “I guess I am a publisher.”
This journey of publishing fine fiction is only a year old and we’re still making our way in fits and starts as best we can. Yet there are those beautiful moments that remind you why you wanted to publish books. The sweetest rewards aren’t necessarily tangible. For instance in the last three weeks I’ve read unsolicited reviews of novels by Sherrie Hansen, Chris Husom, Pat Bertram and Norm Brown, each reviewer carefully and lovingly giving these authors excellent reviews. Another of our authors was recently sought out by three separate book clubs for readings and signings.
And each time another author goes through the excitement of having a first novel published, I get to live again that marvelous thrill and fulfillment with them.
A “second wind” is what you get when you settle down after the first mile or so of the race and really begin to enjoy what you’re doing. –Mike Simpson