The calm before the storm…

Oh yes, it really is the lull, the quiet interregnum just prior to the mad, swirling chaos that will hit the palatial Marshall-Jones Mansions within the next four to six weeks. Spectral Press Volume I is nearly ready to be sent to the printers, just the final few details to sort out and then it’ll be in their hands, either at the end of this week or beginning of next at the latest. A brief moment of calm, then collect signature sheets, get them sent off to Gary, wait anxiously for their return, take them back to printers for everything to be collated and then another brief moment of calm.

And then the mad rush of stuffing and addressing labels begins, ensuring that subscribers get their copies, promotional activity to all and sundry, sending out PDFs to reviewers, answering enquiries…. and then onto getting Spectral Press Volume II ready… and doing everything again when that gets published… and you know what? Bring it on!!

A couple of nights ago, as I took a break from whatever it was I was doing, I had cause to ponder: Why am I doing this? I know damn well that this isn’t going to earn me a living, let alone make me a millionaire – so why do it? It’s simple: I love books, love the written word and, most especially, love a good, well-told story, written by authors who care about what they write. The very fact that I am creating something in a field that I have derived immense pleasure from is good reason enough for me. If I make a little money that I can put back into the projects I have in mind, should Spectral Press be a success, then even better. But, to coin a cliché, I feel like I am giving something back after taking so much from the scene over the years.

Having said that, I also want to avoid over-extending myself. This is the crucial difference between Spectral Press and FracturedSpacesRecords – I did way too much too soon with the latter, inevitably leaving me with a lot of stock that I am unable to sell (live and learn, eh?). Which is why Spectral will, at most, only publish once a quarter for the forseeable future (or only three in the first year). Admittedly, books are a damn sight easier to deal with, plus I appear to have gained a measure of goodwill from those in the scene, for which I am grateful. Above all, though, I am enjoying myself more than I have ever done with anything else I’ve ever been involved in.

I also like to be busy – I abhor boredom. There’s nothing worse than having nothing to occupy yourself with, apart from watching TV (most of which I detest) or drinking (and I REALLY don’t want to go there again – that was a bad place for me). So, running something like an independent publishers is ideal in many ways – and there’ll be many challenges ahead, but those will keep the stasis firmly away.

And now… as an added bonus, here’s Daniele Serra’s cover art for Cate Gardner’s Nowhere Hall chapbook (please note: the text will be different and everything will eventually conform to the Spectral Press ‘look’ – this is to give you some idea of what it’ll look like, however):

© 2010 Daniele Serra/Spectral Press

More news soon!!

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2 Responses to “The calm before the storm…”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Cate Gardner and Walter Shuler, Simon Marshall-Jones. Simon Marshall-Jones said: The calm before the storm…: http://wp.me/pW4jY-sK […]

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