Like many writers, Brent Sampson wanted to have his first book published. After many rejection letters (which he’s now proud of!), Brent self-published his book, and in the process, created Outskirts Press, a full-service publishing provider. Today, the CEO is a best-selling author and helping other writers to publish their own books. Here’s his story.
When did you create Outskirts Press?
I founded the company in 2002. I’m a writer myself, and I faced the same uphill battle all writers face when they want to have their book published. After receiving a lot of rejection letters, I decided to take my destiny into my own hands. I published my first book on my own, and then decided to turn the experience into a business to help other writers. Today, Outskirts Press is experiencing exponential growth as more and more writers turn to self-publishing to become published writers.
How many books have you written?
How would you respond to the naysayers who might frown upon self-publishing?
Self-publishing still has a stigma. Some people look at it with disdain as do some book stores. Lots of authors want to be published by a traditional publishing house. However, we’re in a state of flux in the industry right now. Traditional publishers are having a hard time in this economy, so the timing is right for people who want to self-publish.Also, self-publishing is not what it used to be. Our company is a full-service publishing provider. We offer editorial guidance, if necessary, and then manufacture the book to the highest standards. It’s basically impossible now to tell the difference between a traditionally published book and ones that we publish.
It seems that many parents are writing books these days.
Parents in particular are coming out of the woodwork to print and publish their own books. This is not only for their children but also for themselves. They’re fulfilling their own dreams and desires. They can do something for their child but it also fills their own needs. It is like leaving a legacy for their family.
We all know that everyone has a writer inside of them. What would be some tips for a person who wants to publish their own book?
The first step is to identify your goals. What do you want to accomplish by publishing a book? Some people publish books for family and friends to read. Others want to become best-selling authors. It’s crucial to figure out what your desire is.
The second step is to find an illustrator who is in sync with your book. Many authors have a hard time finding an illustrator, and the illustrations are very important to the success of a book.
It’s also important to do research about publishers to find which one appeals to you.
The fourth (and most important) step is to overcome your fear. A lot of writers let fear get in the way of their potential success. I like to paraphrase Wayne Gretzky. “You are guaranteed to fail 100% of the time if you don’t take the shot.” Writers need to give themselves that “shot” to publish their books and see their dreams become a reality.