Grey Swan Press
I left my position as publisher and editor-in-chief at a traditional publishing company to form Grey Swan Press, a publishing company that shares efforts and responsibilities with its authors. Actually, Grey Swan is an amalgam of the best of traditional publishing and author-subsidized book production: the costs are author-subsidized but the author retains all control and rights to the work, and no royalties are paid to us. Our authors keep all the profits after paying production expenses.I believe that there are three attributes that self-published books must have: (1) they must not look like self-published books; (2) they must have traditional distribution, i.e., they must be on store shelves, not just on the internet; and (3) they must have an effective marketing and promotion program, which includes a great deal of author participation.
Our books do not look like self-published books. Period. In terms of distribution, we offer Grey Swan authors the services of a book distributor that will actively work to get books into bookstores. Marketing and publicity can be handled through our allied company, Kelley and Hall Book Publicity. The company has a long list of successes with author's like Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of Deep End of the Ocean, Oprah's first book club selection, medical thriller writer and NYT best-selling author, Michael Palmer, and Brunonia Barry, whose self-published novel, The Lace Reader, was picked up by William Morrow for $2.4. Kelley & Hall has been credited for the novel's success because they placed the book with a distributor that gave it distribution into bookstores; they got the book reviewed by Publishers Weekly that never reviews self-published books. The starred review the book received opened a bidding war among pubnlishers that resulted in the largest payment ever made for a self-published book. Another of their self-published authors, Lisa Genova, was just given a six-figure deal for her book, Still Alice. In the interest of full disclosure: Kelley and Hall is run by my wife, son, and two daughters.
Grey Swan Press produces very few books in comparison with other author-subsidized publishing companies, and we intend to keep it that way.