Thursday, August 22, 2013

Why I am loving Vanilla Heart Publishing

Back in 1999 I signed with a publishing company to publish my story Courage of the Heart - such excitement! By 2001 when the book became available, the company had changed it's format. It went from a "had-to-be-accepted" POD publisher to a "pay-to-self-publish". They still honored my contract although they no longer offered services without payment (marketing, cover design, reviews, etc) I was stubborn and refused to pay fees that originally would have been included (the contract was detailed too loosely). Since I didn't know then anything about promotions, the book didn't go far.

By 2007 I had written a few more manuscripts and was looking for a traditional (small press) publishing house when I had a conversation with L.E. Harvey (now Lauren Shiro), she had just made a connection with Kimberlee Williams, managing editor and owner of Vanilla Heart Publishing in Washington state, and was raving about the encouragement and professionalism. I asked if she would mind if I sent Kimberlee a query for my novel Bartlett's Rule.

Kimberlee accepted my query, asked to see the full manuscript and sent me an acceptance letter by email. I was so ecstatic I couldn't even talk and had to drag my husband to the computer screen to read it for himself. Bartlett's Rule came out in 2008 followed soon after by Forgotten (renamed and republished as His Lucky Charm) and Within the Law. Kimberlee also helped me work through the muck to get the rights back to Courage of the Heart and after a few minor edits, it was re-published under the VHP imprint.

I kept on writing, mostly Romantic Suspense, and guided by Kimberlee, learned about promotion and so much more about the writing industry. My confidence level as a novelist was way high (I had been writing as a journalist for most of my adult life) and loving it all.

In 2009, with Kimberlee's encouragement, I "experimented" with a murder mystery based in Emergency Medical Services and wrote Final Sin. It was received very well and I followed it with the story of one of the Final Sin characters (Matt) and wrote another EMS mystery, Hyphema.

Just this past year VHP published a collection of short stories, The Many Faces of Chelle Cordero, which range from poignant, humorous, passionate and suspense themes. And now I am so very proud to report that my next novel, a paranormal suspense, is available through September 15 for pre-sale orders - Karma Visited is my tenth novel to be published at VHP! Each novel has been given great covers, book trailers and a number of promotional items/designs from Kimberlee.

Kimberlee has held my hand, encouraged me, soothed my fears and has been a terrific publisher, editor and a cherished friend. She's also been on the cutting edge of the industry and my books are available in print ebook and audio (varies by title). And thanks to Kimberlee, I've received plaudits such as Honorable Mention in the NY Book Festival, inclusion in Carolyn Howard Johnson's Top Ten Reads, Pushcart Prize Nominations and more!

I am so very lucky to have found her and her publishing company.

Thank you Kimberlee Williams!  

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