Whistler of Petty Crimes is my third published book, and each manuscript ends up handled by three distinct publishing companies, and a grand variety of pro’s. In my experience every publishing outlet proves unique in the ways they ask authors to wrestle with the enigma of publication. And in my case, I find all three service providers take me up and down, ‘round and ‘round, through voracious learning curves. (Lucky me. I want to learn—what with valuing lifelong study and all.)

When making the decision to sign a contract with Atmosphere Press, I reminded myself trekking through any uncharted forest in Authorland demands experienced guidance. It’s essential for a lone, somewhat inexperienced writer, like me. And I absolutely know the professionals involved would exact a commitment of money, and most of all, valuable time and energy. (For me, this proves true on any trail I chose to take while crossing Authorland.)

I maintain the conviction that first and foremost, the publishing of my books is meant to be a learning experience. As such, I find it helpful to remember the time, money and energy spent is comparable to the expenditure of these same personal resources, should I have elected to attend graduate school, and used that route to develop authorly muscles. (Been there, done that. Not going back.)

One BIG difference, of course, is that with Atmosphere Press I get a book out in the world. The same might not be true if I’d gained counsel through whichever chosen institution of higher education. There, the brass ring is always going to be an advanced degree. (And the book? Apt to end up a manana-thing.)

In sum, dear reader (who wears the writer hat too), go after learning the most you can from those you select to lead you through the furthest reaches, the tallest peaks of Authorship Mountain.   Go at that learning with gusto.

(As the publishing wizards in Authorland like to punch home: REMEMBER THAT.)

Forget about what you don’t learn. Focus on the gems and jewels you get from every adviser you are involved with at any publishing press. These gifts can be sequestered away as long-lasting riches, turning out to be the treasury on which you base not only the current book, but also those you’ve yet to pen. (Yay, YOU!)

(Lastly, along with me, please shout out the motto on the banner atop Authorship Mountain: WILL DO!)