These Are Exciting Times for Western Authors, Publishers

Tuesday, January 08 2013 20:42   Editor's Blog / Mike Harris
In his book, A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens wrote that "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times."

That easily can be said for today's authors and publishers, who face enormous changes in how books and short stories are published, marketed and sold.

skeetersdream_cover_webresBecause of digital print-on-demand services, eBooks that bypass the traditional printing process itself, and authors who find no stigma to self-publishing, today's book market has been turned upside down. Books can be brought to market faster than ever, cheaper than ever, and reach new audiences through a wider variety of platforms. It also means the old ways of publishing are dead, or in the process of dying.

But even with all of the changes, one aspect of publishing will always remain: The consumer wants quality content, stories that are spellbinding, and books that sell by word-of-mouth recommendations to friends.

With that in mind, I want to share a couple of changes at La Frontera Publishing, and at our history and travel eZine,

In December, we published our first eBook. It is the electronic version of Outlaws and Lawmen, our latest anthology of Western short stories. This month, we published the electronic version of Skeeter's Dream, a wonderful book written by Candace Manley. This tale, set in post-Civil War Arkansas and Texas, is written for the young adult audience and is an exciting, action-driven story of three young friends coming of age.

Both of these eBooks are now available at Amazon. We'll be launching other eBooks, and I'll keep you "in the loop" when we have those ready for eBook fans of Western stories.

The other announcement I have for you is a an update to our "Writing the West" blog.

Please welcome Elise McHugh, who will be sharing with you her views on Western writing trends, news about Western authors and the changing face of today's Western book publishing world.

Elise is senior acquisitions editor of humanities and arts at the University of New Mexico Press. She acquires titles in several fields, including poetry, fiction, memoir, pop culture, cultural and literary criticism, and art, photography, and architecture. Elise is particularly interested in work that focuses on the American West and the U.S.-Mexico border. She has worked with UNM Press for six years, and is a native New Mexican.

UNM Press has been our distributing partner since we began publishing in 2007. They have supported us in many ways, and have marketed and distributed all of our print books. UNM Press is a class act, and their portfolio of titles, both their own as well as those of their publishing clients, such as La Frontera Publishing, is impressive.

I firmly believe there will always be a market for Western books and short stories. There is something about the Old West, the American West, that transcends age groups and cultures. For those of you who love the West, who enjoy writing about the West, and enjoy reading about the West, with all of its lore, legends and truths, I applaud you, thank you, and share your passion.


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