Wednesday, October 18, 2017

We Publish Life

"Take a deep breath....you can do this...

I know you don't know what you are doing....but you can do this...."

These words continue to scroll through my thought processes over the past couple of months. I have been taking a lot of deep breaths. I can't say I'm 100 percent sure I believe the "You can do this" part just yet. We will see how this pans out.

What would possess a 56 year old woman to wake up one morning and decide she is going to start a Publishing Company? A Publishing Company which actually publishes someone else's books. A company which has taken on an investor who 'believes' in the company.

"Take a deep breath...you can do this..."

You've figured out that the 56 year old woman is me...and I'm the one who has chosen to set sail on unchartered waters. Let me introduce you to-- Seaward Publishing House...where "We Publish Life"

What did I know about publishing? I only knew the side of publishing from the author's view point. Aren't they the people who help find an editor? Aren't they the ones who told me that I have to meet deadlines. Magically one day this mystical company send me a proof copy of my book-- at which time, I swoon-- hug it to myself and hope that I'm not dreaming!

So what did I know about publishing? I am beginning to discover, I knew very little. Almost nothing, if I'm honest. Over the past 2 months I have been on a roller coaster ride of a huge learner curve. I've had to hire editors, set up bank accounts, seek out printers...all the while rechecking the balance sheets to make sure I don't go over budget. The banker who helped me set up my 'small business' account asked me, very cheerfully, "What made you choose to start a Publishing Company"

I looked at her across the desk and wanted to say, "I must have been crazy!"....but instead, I said, "Because I came across a manuscript which was just too incredible to not see published...and since no one else wanted to publish it...I decided to seek out investors and to start this company"

Of course, the explanation is not that simple. For more than a year, I had known I was supposed to do this. Even before I read the great manuscript, I knew deep inside I wanted to see a publishing company that published books with meaning. There was this growing desire to see books that would speak life into people. I wanted to publish books that talked about real life and at the same time changed people's lives. About the time I was tossing this around in my head, a brilliant woman, Crystal Krachunis, showed me a manuscript she was working on. I was blown away- it was exactly what I had been thinking about...publishing life!

Over time, she would show me bits and pieces of what she was working on and I encouraged her to send off the manuscript to publishers. She did. I sat with her and worked on sending them to more publishers. All responses were encouraging, but everyone had other projects they were working on. One company responded with ...yes we will publish - but it will be 'co-publishing' for such and such an amount. Sigh. Neither she or her husband had the funds for such an endeavor. Finally they said they were going to self publish....just 500 books for a first run....they could afford that.

"Just let them do it....you can't do it....don't even offer..." my mind screamed at me.

I talked to several people hoping they would be willing to invest in this book. Finally I found an investor. I called up Crystal immediately and said, "Would you be willing to entrust your book to me- I would like to publish it"  And thus the adventure began!

Will you join me on this journey? The book is scheduled to come out just before Christmas. I will be blogging about this process. I will be blogging about my life. I will blog about the great editors, printers, web site designers, bankers, who have helped me get this far. I will be blogging about other books-- books that have long since been published, books that produce life.

Be on the look out for more....and remind me to breathe every once in awhile.






Wednesday, January 11, 2017

....And then there were more...

We started with two. It didn't take long for us to add three more to the mix, making us ongfamily5 for quite a long time. Before we knew what happened, we had added 3 more to the mix. In 2010, the first little person arrived on the scene, bringing our grand total to 9 human beings.

By the end of 2016, we all crammed together into a delightful getaway house in Gig Harbor, Washington. I looked at the little human beings who now outnumbered the adults. It hit me that we are in the process of creating our own tribe. We have reached a grand total of 17 human beings- 8 adults and 9 children.

Ong Family Reunion 2016*
Picture credit: Melissa Letham, Photographer
Our time filled up with fun gingerbread house building, games, just sitting around talking while holding one or another little one. Often times we were running after a 'getaway' baby, or trying to calm down two or more kids upset about something or another. It didn't matter what we did, as long as we were doing it together. One family had flown in from North Carolina...another family jumped into their vehicle at the end of our time to drive across 27 States in around 3 weeks. Still another family flew off to Hawaii shortly after our get together. We treasured the 2 days we were all in the same place at the same time. We are also thankful we were able to get a lovely family picture taken. (thanks to....Melissa Letham, Photographer, Tacoma, WA)

*Faces blocked out due to privacy issues with foster care.

We Publish Life

"Take a deep breath....you can do this... I know you don't know what you are doing....but you can do this...." These words...