I’m continuing last week’s interview with Steven Radecki, one of the managing editors of Paper Angel Press. Last week, we talked about the history of the press and its mission. This week we’re down to the nitty-gritty of the website and how to submit. Here we go!
The Press makes appearances at various conventions; the photo below was taken at WorldCon 2018. As an author, I’m impressed by the number of items on the table: paperbacks, hardbacks, flyers, and business cards, as well as the promotional banner Steven is standing in front of.
On to the interview!
The design of the Paper Angel Press website is amazing. It’s eye-catching, and I love how each book is front and center, on its own page, with a nice big readable font! Who did the design and how did it come about?
I am very pleased you like the design – particularly since I am the one who designed and built it. (In my life outside of Paper Angel Press, I am also a website developer – among other things.) This is the third design for the website – and the first one with which I am finally satisfied.
It really is designed to call attention to our latest release and, in terms of specific books, make it all about the book without cluttering it too much with other information.
The cover designs are also impressive. I am very pleased with the covers for the Shelby McDougall mysteries, Due Date and The Stork. I know that Niki Lenhart does your covers and branding designs. How did Paper Angel Press connect with her?
I actually met Niki through gaming in City of Heroes. I found out she was also a photographer and artist, so we asked her to try to create a logo for us. From there, we went on to design the cover of the first book … and then the next book … and then the next book … She possesses an uncanny knack for design, almost always going off in a far different – and usually far, far better – design direction than the ones that I usually envision.
I love the free downloads that you offer on the website, and I’ve dipped into them. Very good writing and an excellent promotional device.
I’m pleased to hear that you appreciate the free stories. They do seem to work well as a promotional items, as well as good samples for our authors. We also offer printed editions of them at some of the events as promotional items.
I also noticed a couple of intriguing menu items—‘Italian Editions’ and ‘Unruly Voices’. What are they?!
One of our authors, Flavia Idà, works as an Italian translator and offered to provide Italian translations of two of her books. We decided to see what would happen in terms of sales and it also seemed like a nice way to differentiate us from other small presses.
“Unruly Voices” is a new imprint we plan to officially launch this year. All of our non-fiction titles will mostly like be published under this imprint. We wanted something with its own identity to help us differentiate those titles so that they didn’t get lost among all of the fantasy, science fiction, mysteries, and other fiction that we publish.
How many people are on staff and how is the work split up?
We essentially have four team members, all of whom have lives and jobs outside of Paper Angel Press. Laureen Hudson and I [Steven Radecki] handle the review and acquisition of the books. I handle the majority of the business- and production-related tasks, while Laureen handles the editing of the non-fiction titles. Niki Lenhart does all of the artwork for, well, pretty much everything. Kimberley Wall is brought in as needed to assist us with editorial and promotional activities.
I’ve heard that Paper Angel Press provides other services besides publishing fiction. What types of services?
Actually, Paper Angel Press only publishes books now. We spun off the services as a separate company, Practical Content, last year for several business reasons, but one of the key ones was that we wanted to avoid any perception that we were either a vanity publisher or one that draws authors in and then tries to charge them fees for our services.
However, authors out there are planning to self-publish, and need assistance in preparing their manuscript for submissions to other publishers, definitely take a look at the services that Practical Content offers.
Where can readers find you?
The easiest way for readers to find us is on our website https://paperangelpress.com. We are also on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.
And how about authors — what’s the best way for someone with a submission to reach you?
Authors should check out our Submissions page (https://paperangelpress.com/submissions). It contains our submissions guidelines and also a submissions FAQ. We are always looking for new stories to tell. And, for now, non-fiction submissions can be sent there as well.
Where are Paper Angel Press books available?
Paper Angel Press books are available online on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Smashwords, the Apple Books Store, and Lulu. Editions personally signed by our authors can be purchased directly from our website.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Even going into it an experienced project and technical publications manager, it has definitely been a learning experience to become an actual publisher. It has been my privilege and pleasure to help other writers fulfill their dreams of becoming published authors.