From time to time in this space, WestBow Press publishes articles written by our authors in which they share some aspect of their self-publishing journeys. The following are the words of Emily Pittsford; author of “A Most Incredible Witness.” To begin your self-publishing journey, get your free WestBow Press publishing guide today!
People laugh when they hear my answer to their “Can you help me write a book” question? As many now assume I now know what I am doing. I tell them to Google “how to write a book”. After they laugh, I share that I am not an expert. But my publishers at WestBow Press are experts.
On September 7th, 2014, the fourth anniversary of our son’s death; something pretty cool always happens. That day I received the green light to write
his story. My friend who was praying over me said that I needed to start today. So I did. I started doing research that day. At first I was just going to write a pamphlet. I looked at “word”…no help. I at least thought I could write his story on a piece of paper, fold it like a pamphlet and hand it out to people. So I started writing. Ha..already too much for a pamphlet. Wasn’t gonna work, so I then went to Google. I searched how to write a book. At some point I saw a form to fill out on google about writing my story.
I am usually not one to fill out forms as I know what happens. They call you. And in an age where we receive phone calls from two solar and one construction company daily; I just wasn’t up for one more from a publishing company. So I typed my phone# as 999-999-9999. Slick huh? Well on September 22 I received an email from a woman at WestBow. They said my phone number didn’t work. Imagine that? Ok…what the heck. So I called her back. She exceeded my expectations. She loved my story of my son’s death…well, not that he died. But all the incredible things that happened before and after to prove how much God was taking care of him. Before he passed from this earth of course. And she wasn’t reading from a script.
I have this silly rule. If I can picture you as a salesperson in a meeting learning what to say, I end the conversation. Picky? Yes I am. But I’ve learned that thinking the friction I feel will go away, rarely works for me. But she seemed to get me, and felt connected to the company right away.
My husband and I thought it best to at least see if I could write a book before we put money down. Could I have tried to find a mainstream publisher? I suppose so. I think my story is as good. Just as good as any plot line in a Christian movie. But I wanted to feel taken care of, not shuffled around for years. This was my baby (literally as it’s about my son) and I wanted the best.
I searched WestBow on YouTube and listened to authors rave about their experience with WestBow. It was looking like a company I could trust. I had written the first three chapters, and called them. It was now a young man named Aaron. He was a joy to talk with. I explained my story and he “got it” as well.
So on December 22nd I signed up for the largest package. My dad taught me “come big or stay at home.” If I was going to do this, I might as well get the best possible chance for my book. And we were off. I had no idea what to expect. Though they told me. They sent me forms. And I am no expert, but authors don’t always read, we write. Joking. But they we’re wonderful along the way. Jennifer was so patient with me. Explaining things to me each step of the way. (Even though I am sure somewhere in my email box sat an email with all the steps spelled out–joking, I read it…once).
“It’s not easy or everyone would do it,” applies to writing a book. It is complicated, well maybe for novices anyway. But WestBow made the process doable as everything was one step at a time. Did I have to work at this? Well, yes of course. They don’t write the books for you. But it was nice to know everything was legal and done the right way.
I could’ve just done the ebook craze. But I wanted a real; hold it in your hand, in need of a bookmark book. I wanted it to be amazing, and they didn’t disappoint. I still look at the beautiful cover and am in awe that the image of my beautiful son and I are on the cover of a book. If I do nothing else in my life…I can at least say. I have authored a book. Thanks to God and to the wonderful people at WestBow that made it possible.
As September 7th 2015, the fifth anniversary of his death I held my book in my hands. God again, took care of us. As He always does.
Emily L. Pittsford
Author of (Still love saying that) “A Most Incredible Witness”
Check out Emily’s guest feature in “Woman’s Day,”
– WBP –
WestBow Press authors who’d like to share a 350-600 word experience related to the self-publishing of their books, are invited to do so by sending a message through the WestBow Press Facebook page and follow the WestBow Press Twitter account @WestBowPress. WestBow Press reserves the right to edit stories for content, grammar, punctuation and length.