Even Publishers Have Birthdays

Happy Second Anniversary, Astraea Press!
by Jeff Salter

Not sure why we’re blogging about birthdays this week, but we are.  At first I drew a blank, but then I realized my publishing company is observing its second birthday this month, so it fits right in!

When I think of some of the storied histories of the better known New York publishing houses, I’ve been awed at how much influence they’ve wielded in the universe of letters.  Some of them go back a century or more; most were already big names in publishing long before I was first aware of books … nearly six decades ago.

All that is only to say:  each of the most famous publishers you’ve ever heard of … began with a concept, an investment, some sacrifice, a marketing plan, and a good story to print.  At some point, every one of these big name publishers likely started with similar general circumstances — someone recognized a need that was not being met or believed they could do a better job at meeting the needs and desires of readers / buyers.  Or perhaps they thought they could publish potentially great books that were falling through cracks left by the other publishers currently operating.

But they all started with the first functional day, that initial manuscript query, the starting round of edits on their very first contracted book.

Astraea Press

And all this leads me up to the second anniversary of Astraea Press, the brainchild of publisher Stephanie Taylor, who saw a need not being met, believed she could assemble ‘clean’ stories which readers wanted, and knew there were great books falling the cracks elsewhere.

It took vision, concept, investment, sacrifice, good stories, faith … and lots of guts.  Stephanie has admitted that several people tried to talk her out of trying and others (who knew she was forging ahead anyway) tried to discourage her.  Yet she prevailed.  I won’t pretend to know the exact numbers, but Astraea (in two short years) has collected some 150 authors and published well over 200 titles.  Some have won awards and some have appeared on prominent best-seller lists.
heart-astraea-3Stephanie and her crew have built a wonderful sense of community and mutual encouragement among the A.P. authors:  when good news is shared, we cheer for each other … when it’s not so good, we commiserate and console.  There’s a healthy sense of competition, but I believe all of us recognize that when any Astraea title or author does well, it makes things potentially better for all of us.

As I’ve told Stephanie, I feel I have found a home with A.P. and sincerely hope to publish many other novels here.

So, during the anniversary month of February, I dedicate this blog column to Astraea Press and to its Founder / CEO Stephanie Taylor, who had the vision, faith, and courage to launch a company to publish clean fiction.  Also to the A.P. staff I’ve had the great fortune to work with, including Kay Springsteen Tate, Opal Campbell, Cheryl Grey, Traci Pollitt, Elaina Lee, and Stephy Smith.

Happy Second Birthday, A.P.!

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About jeff7salter

Currently writing romantic comedy, screwball comedy, and romantic suspense. Twelve completed novels and five completed novellas. Working with three royalty publishers: Clean Reads, Dingbat Publishing, & TouchPoint Press/Romance. "Size Matters" -- Oct. 2016 "The Duchess of Earl" -- Jul. 2016 "Stuck on Cloud Eight" -- Nov. 2015, "Pleased to Meet Me" (novella) -- Oct. 2015, "One Simple Favor" (novella) -- May 2015, "The Ghostess & MISTER Muir" -- Oct. 2014, "Scratching the Seven-Month Itch" -- Sept. 2014, "Hid Wounded Reb" -- Aug. 2014, "Don't Bet On It" (novella) -- April 2014, "Curing the Uncommon Man-Cold -- Dec. 2013, "Echo Taps" (novella) -- June 2013, "Called To Arms Again" -- (a tribute to the greatest generation) -- May 2013, "Rescued By That New Guy in Town" -- Oct. 2012, "The Overnighter's Secrets" -- May 2012. Co-authored two non-fiction books about librarianship (with a royalty publisher), a chapter in another book, and an article in a specialty encyclopedia. Plus several library-related articles and reviews. Also published some 120 poems, about 150 bylined newspaper articles, and some 100 bylined photos. Worked about 30 years in librarianship. Formerly newspaper editor and photo-journalist. Decorated veteran of U.S. Air Force (including a remote ‘tour’ of duty in the Arctic … at Thule AB in N.W. Greenland). Married; father of two; grandfather of six.
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17 Responses to Even Publishers Have Birthdays

  1. Thank you so much, Jeff! What a nice surprise and such kind words. I love all of you authors so much!

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      Glad you could visit here, Stephanie. I know you’ve got a lot going on right now … not to mention all the plates you keep spinning in your “regular’ schedule.

      Like

  2. Iris B says:

    Happy Birthday, Astraea Press, Happy Birthday, Stephanie …. and Kudos to you, Jeff, for posting about AP’s birthday. Just a reminder to all, you might like to celebrate with AP and visit their website for some freebies 😉

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      I’m pleased you mentioned the freebies, Iris.
      I’ve posted two reminders on my FB wall already and will post others as the month continues.
      For anybody who doesn’t know what this is about: check the AP blog! each day during Feb, AP is giving away TWO free e-books to anybody who claims them. No Hoops.

      Like

  3. Happy birthday, indeed! I feel so fortunate to have been directed to AP that I forget about all the work that went into making this company happen. Cheers! And a fervent wish for many, many more birthdays.

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      Right, Patty. Hard for me to imagine having the fortitude to launch a new venture in those varied circumstances Steph faced as she did it … and did so successfully!

      Like

  4. crbwriter says:

    Love a good success story! Happy birthday, Astraea, and happy sales to all the authors!

    Like

  5. Micki Gibson says:

    Happy Birthday, Astrea Press! And kudos to Stephanie for having the vision to see her dream come true. Congratulations to all A.P. authors. Now, let’s eat cake!

    Like

  6. (You and Astraea go “American Gothic” huh,Jeff?)
    Yes, congratulations to Stephanie Taylor! I had so many nay-sayers around me that I applaud not only her achievements, but her fortitude. She is an inspiration.May she find continued success and growth…and happiness in it!
    Happy Birthday, Astraea Press!

    Like

  7. jbrayweber says:

    Happy birthday, Astraea! Congrats, Stephanie. Job well done! *throws confetti…pops champagne*

    Like

  8. Very nice tribute to your publishing house. I’m glad you’re happy there.

    Like

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