Whenever Paul or I mention to someone that we’re in the process of writing and photographing for a book, by far, the most common response is:
“That’s fantastic! Who’s your publisher?”
The short answer: Analemma Press, L. L. C.
The long answer: The first thing Paul and I did after our initial meeting in spring 2010 didn’t have anything to do with photography or writing. Instead, we started evaluating the market for our idea and developing a query – a formal sales pitch, if you will – to shop our idea around to various traditional publishers. We were ready to send lengthy letters to a number of selected outlets.
My ears perked up, though, during the 2010 Outdoor Writers Association of America (OWAA) Conference as a number of highly successful book authors shared their experiences with self-publishing. In less than three days, they collectively talked me out of sending our book idea to a traditional publishers. They asked, “Do you know who you’re market is?”
“Yes, we think so,” I replied.
“Do you know where to find them?” they inquired.
“Yes, we think so,” I replied again.
“Are you willing to dedicate your own time and money to promote and sell the book to these customers, which you’re going to have to do anyway with a traditional publisher?” they posed.
“Yes, we know so,” I replied to their final question.
“Then publish it yourself!” they suggested enthusiastically and without hesitation.
Though the market analysis effort has already proven to be a valuable activity, we never sent our query letter out to anyone. We consciously decided to produce, print, and promote our book without the support from an outside publisher. Then in April 2011 (I joke, in a short moment of downtime/boredom), I formalized our path by creating my own publishing company, Analemma Press, LLC.
Which leads to the second most frequently asked question:
“What’s an analemma?”
Here’s an explanation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Analemma.
Naming a new business is tough! We brainstormed a list of ideas, mostly related to light, photography, creativity, hope, blah, blah, blah. Nothing grabbed us. However, after National Geographic posted a photograph of the sun’s analemma during the 2010 holidays (http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/12/photogalleries/101228-sun-end-year-analemmas-solstice-eclipse-pictures/), I knew in an instant what name I wanted: “Analemma Press.”
No, I am not one of the fortunate ones who has recorded this spectacle of nature (but you can bet it’s on the list of things to do!). I’m enthralled with the planning, effort, and skills involved to capture such an image, though. As I sketch out my own attempt to photograph an analemma in the future, in the meantime, this name serves as a daily reminder that with the proper planning, effort, and skill, anything is possible, even those things that seem so ridiculously far out of reach…like self-publishing a book!
QUICK BOOK UPDATE: We’ve worked out a few print issues during our proofing process this week, so we’ve given the printer final approval to press. Printing starts this Thursday, and we’re hoping to have the books in our hands within the next two weeks (barring any major issues)!!