So today I am going to introduce you to the amazingly epic ladies of PageCurl. This will be the first of a two week, two part look into the who and the why. I know these ladies personally (well as much as you can know someone you met on the internet and have never actually seen in person) and I am here to tell you that they are both truly special people. Ladies who work hard but always have a moment to help out a fledgling author.
I wanted at first to cut and condense their answers and give you a short but enlightening blog post but when I got to reading I knew I couldn’t cut anything. It’s all too good. So I am sorry, this is going to be a long post. I really hope you stay to the end though. I think the payoff will be great. And at the end there will be links! Links to find Patricia’s books. Links to follow PageCurl through the social media sphere. All the links you could hope for!
1.Why start PageCurl?
Well, I didn’t set out with the goal of starting a publishing company. I’d met Samantha only a month or two before and every time we talked, we realized more and more that we were the same person. I think it takes a very specific type of person to start a new company while working full time and that’s what we both did. We’re a little insane, in a good way, or at least we think it’s a good way.
Anyway, I was frustrated with how hard it was, as an author, to find quality people and companies. Samantha and I met because I’d just fired my author assistant for lack of communication and no follow-through. Not long after, I had to find a new cover designer and that search was going badly. We started talking, and as she’s also an author, we commiserated about the difficulties we were both finding in the industry as a whole.
And then it started. I said something about having future plans for world domination and while I can’t remember Samantha’s exact response, I’d bet it was something along the lines of “I’m in.”
I’d planned on taking over the world myself. I figured I could. Why not? Malevolent dictator and all that. But I quickly realized that it would be a lot more fun (not to mention easier and quicker), if we did it together. And that’s how PageCurl was born.
We’re from authors, for authors. We think that this gives us an edge. We’re not trying to sell an author things they don’t need, simply because someone else thinks they need them. Our goal is to work with authors to give them the services that they need, for a price that they can afford. We’ll work with all authors: independent, traditional, and hybrid. We offer editing, cover design, marketing, and publishing services. If you’ve got the idea for a book, we’ll help you make it happen.
If someone would have told me that I would become a published author, a publicist, and start a publishing company within a year, I would have said, “Go home, you’re drunk.” Authors were celebrities in my eyes. While I could adore their books, I would never belong in their circle.
Yet, every dream should begin with a plan, so I made one. I’m not the type to wait on the sidelines while life passes me by. I want to jump in and live it. So that’s what I did. I knew I needed my foot in the door, so I found an opening and went for it. I took my love for marketing, and my career of it, and landed myself as Patricia’s virtual marketing assistant. The Universe brought us together on Twitter, yes really, and then I landed another part-time position with a small hybrid publisher as a publicist. From there I worked with Patricia and she kept claiming she wanted to take over the world. That sounded good to me and I figured I’d help in all the ways I could. One day she offered me a seat on the throne next to her and I did say, “I’m in.” Now here we are, and it’s awesome.
2.When did you start PageCurl?
We launched PageCurl on August 1, 2014. In the past three months, we’ve taken on a number of high-profile projects including editing, marketing support, and design work. We’ve published our first book, A Shift in the Water, and we have two more books coming out in the next six weeks, including a holiday anthology with twenty-three authors, Unwrapping Love.
I’m glad Patricia knows, because it feels like it’s been months and months to me. In a good, busy sort of way and I wouldn’t change a thing. In the short time we’ve been open for business, we’ve done all the things Patricia mentioned and more. In addition to our clients and our published books, we’ve built #WriterWednesday and Cover Clash – two free author promotions and have launched PageCoins, an initiative where authors can earn credit towards services, and now we’re working on a read and review program. This is just the beginning!
3.What is your place in the company?
I’m the Founding Editorial Director. I oversee all of the editing work and ensure that it’s up to our standards. I also edit, format, and handle the mechanics of the publishing process for our authors. In addition, I handle the technical details of our website.
I’m the Prom Queen. I’m the one who campaigns for you to take action and to vote for me, and the one you want to party with. No, but really. I’m the Founding Marketing Director and I work hard and long to help authors build their brand, find their audiences, and sell more books. I also make sure people know about PageCurl, and put forth campaigns to continue our growth.
- How did you meet?
Oh, that’s a good story. At the beginning of the year, I had this grand plan of releasing four books. And I knew if I wanted to do that, I needed help. I could write the books and edit them, but I hated the marketing. It was taking me too long and I wasn’t very good at it. So I put it out on Twitter that I needed an author assistant. One contacted me and after a brief phone call, we decided that we’d give the relationship a try. It did not go well. There was no communication. She gave me a few ideas (which I paid her for), but I asked her to help coordinate reviews, a blog tour, and a cover reveal and while she managed to send a few emails on my behalf, I found errors. She didn’t even get the name of the book right. I fired her.
The next week, I participated in a Twitter chat, K8Chat. I don’t remember what the subject was, but it was one where I could legitimately ask the question, “Does anyone have recommendations for an author assistant?”
I got two replies almost immediately. One of those was from Samantha. I told both women that I’d love to talk to them. I even went so far as to send the first respondent an email explaining what I needed. I didn’t hear back from her. (Still haven’t.) But Samantha not only looked up my website (from my Twitter profile, she didn’t stalk me or anything…I don’t think) and sent me an email, but she did the one thing that made me think that this relationship was going to be a good one. She offered to work for a month for free. She’d wanted to break into the author assistant world but didn’t have a lot of experience in it. But she was a writer and she was a marketing specialist already and wanted the chance.
Now, believe me. Saving money is awesome, but I wasn’t about to have her working for free. Still, we negotiated a lower than standard rate and decided that we’d do a month as a trial period. And the rest…well, it’s not exactly history. We’re not famous. Yet. But we will be. In addition to her work for PageCurl and her own writing, Samantha is still my Marketing Manager.
Aw, this is one of my favorite stories. In my plot to break into the publishing industry, I knew coming in as a no-named author wasn’t going to cut it. So I had to break in using my skills and my strength, and that’s in marketing.
Kate, from #K8Chat, is an author marketing assistant. I was stunned. That was a career? I could do that. I wanted to do that. I was a writer, so I could understand other writers and I knew marketing. Okay, maybe I didn’t know exactly what book marketing entailed, but I was sure I could learn and learn fast.
The tweetchat Patricia mentioned was actually one for author assistants. It was Kate and another author assistant answering questions about the career. This was perfect timing! I had a lot of questions. Out of the blue Patricia popped up with her questions and I messaged her. What did I have to lose?
Before we talked, I stalked her on social… shh. Seriously, how do you think I’ve never not been selected from a job interview? I prepare before the interview and do my proper stalking on the interviewer’s social pages. So back to my stalking of Patricia…. errrr…. research. I knew marketing, but needed to learn how to apply it to the publishing world. Patricia was my first shot at that and I guess I do okay since she’s keeping me around. 😉
Oh, and we did meet in person recently. I flew to her and stayed a week in Seattle. It’s confirmed. We ARE the same person.
- Which is more satisfying? Writing or the PageCurl work you do?
That’s a good question. I love both. There’s very little that’s as satisfying as seeing an author’s hard work go through levels of polish and turn into a finished book. That said, I am, and will always be, a writer. I love my characters and the worlds I create. Writing is what allows me to do everything else in my life. It calms me, renews me, and helps me work through my frustrations.
I love both of my jobs (I also work full time, but we won’t spend a lot of time talking about that) and I hope to be writing and running PageCurl with Samantha for a very long time.
Oh man, can we talk about how exhausting they both are? Exhausting but very satisfying. The thing about PageCurl that I love is we aren’t only a publishing house. In fact, Indies can use all of our services and publish like the pros without publishing their books with us. On the flipside, you can use your own services, and as long it’s quality and we approve the work, you can use us for better self-publishing. PageCurl is really intended to be a resource at the author’s disposal, and I love that. Top it off with some free promotions and it can’t be any better.
Now I love writing. It’s the editing I hate, ha! If I could only find time to do more of it. That’ll come later though, and I have a whole notebook full of my next romance story concept.