BSP and other new publishers featured in St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Book editor Jane Henderson wrote a piece in the Post-Dispatch on the new face of publishing in the St. Louis area. The region, blessed with great universities and many talented writers, is home to a new crop of publishers one of which is, ta da!, us. Here’s the link to the full article:

Here’s the excerpt about Blank Slate Press:

But some new publishers actively avoid the self-publishing model.

Kristina Blank Makansi wants to nurture up-and-coming writers for Blank Slate Press.

The press recently chose two manuscripts for its first books, novels that it hopes to publish by Christmas.

“We will pay authors stipends, promote their stories and help them get started with blogs. … Our idea is to be a writer’s advocate from the get-go.”

She and her partners, Jamey Stegmaier and husband Jason Makansi, are writers themselves.

“We are looking at it from the point of view of aspiring novelists. We talk to a lot of other writers, follow writers’ blogs, go to writers workshops. So much of the frustration of being a writer is getting someone to pay attention to your work.”

Blank Slate Press’ partners pay the authors out of their own pockets, but Makansi hopes other individuals will invest in the press.

She said, “We’re like a new tech start-up with the idea that if a book becomes a best-seller, or is picked up by a commercial press, investors might make some money.”

‘A great match’

One writer they signed, Anene Tressler-Hauschultz of Kirkwood, took the book contract to a lawyer, who assured her that having the publisher in town is helpful: “There are times you need to do a face-to-face.”

She likes that Blank Slate is new and energetic: “They are starting out as am I. It felt like a great match. … The scale was right. I wasn’t going to be one of 200 people coming on board.”

Makansi knows publishing is a difficult business. “We’re not out to build an empire. We don’t think we’ll get rich doing this.”

We don’t think we’re going to get rich or build and empire, but we’re pretty darn sure we’re going to have lots of fun, meet talented new writers, and play our small part in bringing  great stories to readers anxious for high quality, well written work.

Explore posts in the same categories: Anene Tressler-Hauschultz, Fred Venturini, small press, the business of publishing, the future of publishing

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