Linda Fulkerson is publisher of Scrivenings Press.
Tell us about Scrivenings Press and some advantages of a small press.
When my friend Kathy Cretsinger made the decision to retire from publishing due to age-related health issues, she sold me the backlist from her company, Mantle Rock Publishing. In July 2020, I launched Scrivenings Press and republished her titles. Since that date, we have published another 45 books. We now have nearly 100 titles in print and publish an average of three books per month.
I think the best thing about working with Scrivenings Press, and likely other small presses, is the advantage of close communication. Our authors can email me directly or text, if it’s an urgent issue. We currently have about 40 authors either published or contracted, and we work to keep a family feel. To help facilitate that family/team spirit, we have a private authors-only Facebook group as well as a monthly Author Chat via ZOOM. The authors are wonderful about helping cross-promote one another’s books and supporting one another through prayer and encouragement.
We also have a retreat each spring and just launched a special book-marketing tutorial section in the authors-only area of our website. The lessons are taught by authors who have expertise in various areas.
Another way we work together is through our annual writing contests. We just launched our third annual #novelstarts and #getpubbed contests. Submissions will be accepted through the end of June, and then our authors will be first-round judges. Our editorial staff (seven freelance editors at this time) will judge the next round.
Another advantage of a small press is the ability to take risks. Big publishers tend to go with more proven authors. We can give newcomers a chance—if they’ve written a great story.
How can someone get the most out of writers conferences?
Conferences are such great opportunities to meet other writers and surround oneself with others who “get it.” I’ve met several life-long friends at writers conferences. And, of course, training is important. Attending a conference is a great way to learn from some of the industry’s leaders.
One thing I would encourage attendees to do is implement what you learn quickly. Oftentimes, after coming down from the “conference high,” writers get busy with life and have difficulty recalling a writing-craft technique or marketing tip that they’ve learned. Speed of implementation is a vital way to reinforce the knowledge a writer has invested in to learn.
Plus, it’s a great way to overcome fear. For instance, if a writer attends a class about how to prepare and submit a proposal, which can be terrifying, it’s best to hit send before that post-conference confidence and excitement dies down.
Who should schedule an appointment with you at Write-to-Publish?
We are currently seeking clean and/or Christian fiction for adults in most genres, including speculative. At this time, we do not publish children’s books or nonfiction. One of our goals as a company is to give debut novelists a foot in the door of traditional publishing. There are so many great writers out there, but only so many slots on the publishing calendar.
We do not require an agent to submit to Scrivenings Press, although we do request that submissions are as polished as possible. Our editorial staff is excellent at helping new authors develop their writing skills and crafting their stories. And our new marketing tutorial program is designed to help new authors build their platforms and sell more books.
Interviewed by Susan Miura, speaker, freelance editor, and author of four award-winning novels and a children’s book.