It has been a lifelong dream of mine, one of many, to own a publishing company that would publish stellar yet highly engaging books. I wanted authors who were fun and excited to not only write but to get out there and tell the world about their books. Most of all, I wanted to be successful.
About three years ago I started getting serious about that dream, after I'd been published by Spring Creek Book Co. (Out of the Shadows...Into the Light). I started crunching numbers, making plans, developing a business and marketing plan, talking to different authors, both publish and unpublished, businessmen and women, watching the economy, paying attention to trends ... you know, everything that goes into opening a business you plan on making a success. I published two more books and kept getting everything set up.
In May I hired two of the best in the business, meaning the best editor and the best production manager and we got busy taking this dream from paper and making it a reality.
Today ... yes, today ... it all came together. I can't decide whether to launch into a manic version of the Snoopy Dance or to take a deep breath and pass out on the floor. Valor is 100% officially open for business.
Our first book is written by Utah Attorney General, Mark Shurtleff. He has written the most astounding book. I remember, when he first emailed it to me I thought to myself, "Oh please let this be good." (He's a friend. It's really hard to reject friends.) I opened the document, scrolled down and began to read. By the end of the first paragraph I was head-to-toe goosebumps. By the time I read the last word I knew I had a bestseller on my hands. The life of Dred Scott, a famous man who literally shaped American history in the mid-1800's, literally leaped off the page. Mark Shurtleff has a way with the written word that lets you know that he has a strong command of the English language. I wept, I laughed, I urged Dred Scott on as I read, turning page after page.
I'd like to share with you the first paragraphs which literally blew me away!
"To him, the river sang. It intoned but one word, repeated with every ripple, and lap, and tide. One word that began with a gurgle far to the North, crescendoed through the heart of a nation, and climaxed in the Deep South with such force that no power on earth could hold it back. One word that bled from every pore. One word: FREEDOM!And so, with the signing of Mark soon came the signing of other authors: Karen E. Hoover, Daron D. Fraley, Kimberly Job, Michele Ashman Bell (for her national releases), Alison Palmer (for her fiction releases) and many more.
"The "Father of Waters" sang, not with the splash of waves lapping against the levee, for the Mighty Mississippi was wide, and thick, and slow. It slid like a solid mass of glacial mud that had been moving toward the sea since before the Fall of Adam. It was ancient by the time Moses led the Children of Israel out of slavery in Egypt. No, its melody was something more profound and ancient, and it harmonized with something deep inside Dred, and filled his very being so that he was powerless to ignore it. He turned toward the river, closed his eyes, and whispered the song of the slave." (Am I Not a Man? The Dred Scott Story by Mark L. Shurtleff, SLC, UT, Valor Publishing Group, November 2009)
Then came our first big sale...really nice, big sale. Negotiations began. Contracts went back and forth. Business discussed and rehashed. Terms set and then adjusted. On and on, really all part of business, and today it finally came through. Big sale, happy me.
Valor Publishing Group now has the capability of doing everything we dreamed. Can you believe it? In this economic and political climate one of my dreams has come true. Life is good.