It is somewhat rude that I never really introduced myself (as either ‘me’ or Bolide Publishing), what ‘we’ are about, our mission statement, and vision etc, something I intend to rectify now.
‘I‘ am Michelle Dunbar, the registered owner and sole director of Bolide Publishing Limited. I am a writer, an unpublished (as yet) author, a developmental editor, and an avid book reader. I am obsessed (and I’m not using that word lightly) with science fiction/space fantasy books and films. I grew up on a diet of Battlestar Galactica (original series), Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, Flash Gordon, Star Trek, and of course, Star Wars. As a child, I imagined day trips to the moon would be a ‘thing’ by the time I was an adult (I’m still disappointed that’s not the case).
For the last four years, I have been working as a developmental editor, trading under the name Michelle Dunbar Editing Services. Editing is my dream job and I have enjoyed every moment of it (and hopefully many more).
Two years ago, I was speaking with a couple of indie author friends about the possibility of starting my own publishing press. I ummed and erred, and researched (lots of research), toing and froing over whether it would be a good idea or not and considering if I have what it takes to be a publisher. I felt I had some of the skills necessary, but it was never going to be a one-person business. I knew the editing process up to the point a book is uploaded for publication, but everything after that would be a step into the unknown. Fortunately, my time as an editor allowed me to make connections with individuals who were ‘in the know’.
I focussed a lot of my research in the area of complaints – namely authors complaints about small (and scam/vanity) publishers. I wanted to know what not to do so I could run Bolide Publishing ‘right’ (or to the best of my ability anyway). I also did a lot of reading on how to publish and promote, but as a visual learner, I tend to learn more when I’m actively doing things – and I did – the first year as a publisher was a massive learning curve. That’s not to say I haven’t made mistakes, because I have, but I like to think I’m learning from them.
Bolide Publishing works on the traditional publishing model and has been in existence since August 2016, although we didn’t publish our first book until May 4th, 2017. I use the term ‘we’ to include myself (as the publisher) and the author. Like many of the smaller presses out there, we work very closely with the author, from the initial receipt of the manuscript to publication and beyond. There is also a small team of dedicated editors working behind the scenes to polish the manuscripts to as close to perfection as we can get them, and two cover designers.
The biggest learning curve is ongoing – book promotion – but we’re making good progress. Author Assist has been key in providing me with some valuable advice about promoting via social media, but next on my to-learn list is putting the theory of getting physical copies into bookshops into practice.