Why would a bookstore want to create a publishing company, especially in this age of vanity publishing? We pondered this question for quite some time before deciding to launch Proseyr Publishing, and here’s what we came up with.
The disappearance of local books
One of the problems with self-published books is that their longevity is often more dependent upon the author’s attention span than the quality or marketability of the book. Useful and informative books — especially local histories — disappear because the author doesn’t feel it’s worth the trouble to continue printing and distributing them.
By setting up our own publishing company, we can acquire these books and put them back into print. In some cases, we essentially re-publish the existing work. In others, it goes through a complete update and facelift before going back into print. Either way, we can preserve the history contained in the books and put them into both our own store and the distribution channels that serve bookstores and libraries across the country and around the world.
If you run a bookstore these days, you see it all. A steady stream of writers flows through the front door with their dreams and souls clutched in their arms, made tangible courtesy of your friendly neighborhood vanity press. Many of these books have great potential, but they simply aren’t salable as presented to us. Few have been professionally edited. Even fewer have gone through the hands of a cover designer, proofreader, or copyeditor.
One aspiring author presented a book with 47 exclamation points on the first page. Another brought a GBC-bound photocopy of a typed manuscript, declaring it a finished salable book. Many books lack the most fundamental elements of a printed book, such as barcodes, copyright pages, and tables of contents.
We have been in the book business for a long time, and we see what some of these books could become. We’re not a traditional publishing company; we don’t employ editors and illustrators. We can, however, guide the authors through the process of finding the right editors and illustrators before submitting the book for in-house book design and proofreading.