Friends Don’t Let Friends Publish Junk – Class Notes

Tamara Passey Faculty ANWA Conference 2016  Photo Credit Michelle Wilson
Tamara Passey Faculty ANWA Conference 2016 Photo Credit Michelle Wilson

Here’s me, mid-sentence, teaching a class at the fabulous ANWA Conference. You may not be able to tell from the picture, but I was totally super-excited–and nervous and humbled–to be included in the faculty. And here are some gifted authors that attended the class–thank you friends!

ANWA Conference 2016
ANWA Conference 2016 Photo Credit Michelle Wilson


I’ve posted the class notes here for a limited time. Enjoy!

Friends Help Friends Achieve Their Dreams

  • Focus on quality


  • Declare your dreams. It’s ok to adjust your dreams. Don’t lose sight of them


  • Reach out, learn names, care about dreams


  • Utilize critique groups, readers, editors and proofreaders. Remember, you’d rather hear it from a reader or editor than a customer who leaves the criticism in a review.
  • Money spent on editing and proofreading is money well spent


  • Self-publishing and setting up a business/imprint will allow you to maintain creative control over your work, maximize tax deductions, give your books a quality advantage.
  • Steps:
    • Choose a name, search trademark database and google []
    • Obtain an EIN, go to IRS.GOV
    • Register your trade name [for AZ: Secretary of State’s office, Trade Name registration $10, takes 2-3 weeks, expedited add $25]
    • Obtain a Tax license [AZ Department of Revenue – Transaction Privilege Tax (TPT) license] [] *Allows you to order your books at wholesale price
    • Set up a website, design a logo
    • Open business bank accounts [will need Trade Name Registration]
    • Purchase your own ISBNs,
    • Obtain an LCCN-Library of Congress Control Number – it’s free—best to get before book release so it can be included on copyright page.
  • Quality publishing takes teamwork. Cover designer, editor, proofreader, formatting, review services.
  • Cover tips: #1 marketing tool. Genre, audience and tone need to match. Title and image need to pop as a thumbnail. Don’t skimp on your cover.
  • Points to keep costs down and avoid scams. Can I do it myself? Can I trade services? What are the references and reviews of the company? Package prices can be higher and include services you don’t need. If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is!
  • Plan to succeed: create a business plan, think 5 years, include marketing, budget and distribution options


Resources – Just a sampling

  • Self-Publisher’s Legal Handbook, by Helen Sedwick [*strongly recommend–I do not know the author]
  • 19 Fantastic Book Cover Designers,
  • Smashwords – formatting guide
  • POD like a Pro, Heather Justesen
  • The Book Ninja
  • Predators & Editors


“Things of quality have no fear of time.” ~ Unknown

“Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives.” William A. Foster

“Quality is the best business plan.” John Lasseter

“Quality is not what happens when what you do matches your intentions. It is what happens when what you do matches your customer’s expectations.” Guaspari

“Give them quality. That’s the best kind of advertising.” Milton Hersey

On using feedback: “It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory.” W. Edwards Deming

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