November 15, 2013 by Christina Hamlett
A Conversation with Adrianne Marie Hall
The entrepreneurial spirit is not only alive and well in Monrovia, California, but Adrianne Marie Hall is an exemplary model of what can be accomplished with the right mix of passion, imagination and savvy business sense. I had earlier interviewed Adrianne in her capacity as Owner/Creator of Beadie Books Book Jewelry and then, a short while later, featured her in You Read It Here First (http://fromtheauthors.wordpress.com) to celebrate her debut novel, Thresholds. Before I knew it, she had donned yet another hat, this time as the President/CEO of Anthurium Publishing LLC. When does this woman ever sleep? Fortunately, she made time for us this month to talk about what it’s like to discover new authors.
Q: What was the inspiration behind launching Anthurium Publishing LLC?
A: About eighteen years ago I had two completed manuscripts and was looking into the process of submitting them to a publisher. I attended a writers conference in Los Angeles during that time where I met an author who had self-published his book (which was a concept that I had not explored). After picking his brain for information on his process, my interest in the world of independent publishing was ignited. I began reading everything I could find on self-publishing, and the more I learned the more I embraced the concept. Nevertheless, I ultimately found myself having to put the idea on my bucket list because raising children, working full-time along with other life chores took priority.
Fast forward to 2012 and the children are adults and doing well but those two manuscripts were still unpublished. Over time they have been joined by a few more short stories and at least three dozen poems. As I began to once again consider self-publishing it became obvious that the landscape of publishing had gone through quite an exciting metamorphosis over the years. While I immersed myself once again into learning the ends and outs of the industry, a small publishing house took interest in my manuscript for the novel Thresholds. Although my novel was ultimately published in January 2013, I had quite the crash course into the world of publishing during the process. It was that entire experience that solidified my decision to seriously take on the project of starting my own publishing company.
Q: Starting a brand new business is always a risky proposition but especially in an economy as wobbly and disastrous as the one we’re currently experiencing. Tell us about the specific elements that governed your decision to take a leap of faith and proceed with gusto rather than wait for the market to improve.
A: I realized that there would never be a perfect time. I had postponed moving forward with this venture for eighteen years while the realities, ups and downs, successes, failures and dramas associated with everyday life continued to come and go. So I finally let go of waiting for the perfect time and decided that now was the best time.
Q: Whenever I see the name Anthurium, I’m fondly reminded of past trips to Hawaii and seeing these lovely blooms as the centerpiece of residential and commercial landscaping. What was the personal significance of adopting this lovely flora as the logo for your publishing company?
A: Christina I absolutely love Anthuriums because compared to other flowers they are so unconventional, unusual and unique. Out of its many varieties, I actually used three of the Anthurium andraeanum in my logo design which is probably the one variety that people are most familiar with. The artist in me appreciates their amazing pallet of rich and vibrant colors. Because they are so incredibly long lasting, I would rather have a bud vase with one Anthurium in it than a bouquet with dozens of any other flower. When I decided that the heart of my publishing company would embrace a variety of written projects especially those that may seem a bit unconventional, unusual and or unique I had to name this company Anthurium Publishing.
Q: So tell us about Anthurium’s mission and/or business model.
A: The underlying premise that I used in my novel Thresholds was “Everyone has a secret”. The underlying premise that is embedded into the architecture of Anthurium Publishing LLC is “Everyone has a story to tell”. Although we adhere to a “Five Step Publishing Process” for every project, we understand that not all stories come in the shape of poetry, fiction or non-fiction, and not every publishing project is intended for mass distribution. We take the time to listen very carefully to the client so that we understand what their ultimate goal is for their project. Then we work with them to produce a finished project that they and we will be proud of. Anthurium Publishing’s mission statement embraces the very essence of what we do. It states that Anthurium Publishing LLC provides the synthesis for writers to translate their creative ideas into professionally-published works; converting truth, fiction, poetic thoughts and expertise into a recorded legacy to be read, savored and shared. We want our clients to know that we are in the business of helping them fulfill their publishing dreams no matter how large or small, and that they will be in excellent hands throughout the process.
Q: What are some of your short and long term goals for the company?
A: Our short term goal is to release three of the publishing projects that we currently have in house during the first quarter of 2014. Our long term goal is to expand into the music publishing industry within the next three years. Our ultimate goal will always be to strive for cover to cover excellence in every project that we publish with the Anthurium Publishing LLC imprint.
Q: What do you believe it takes to build not only a successful customer base but also a stellar reputation?
A: It takes honesty, compassion, and integrity. I have to admit that people don’t usually purchase books because of the publisher’s imprint. People purchase books because they are familiar with the author, or something about the cover catches their eye, and or they are interested in the content. We don’t want anyone to be disappointed with one of our publications because it wasn’t published well. Because we take our work seriously, we want clients to understand that we won’t just publish something for the sake of it. We strive for excellence and a project has to be of a certain caliber to be published with the Anthurium Publishing LLC imprint.
Q: How did you go about researching what type/tier of publishing services you felt would be a successful and cost-effective match for your clients?
A: I am a bit of a research nerd. I hone in on a topic and then dig for information about it where ever I can by utilizing bookstores, libraries, the internet, and through conversations. I asked authors about their past publishing experiences. I asked writers what their publishing concerns were. I also considered my own experience working with a publisher. I compiled those concerns and experiences found the current best solutions for them, and then that information to develop the framework for Anthurium Publishing.
Q: What’s your primary marketing venue for generating a buzz and attracting authors?
A: Of course anyone who is ready to publish or has an interest in discussing a publishing project can go directly to our website at http://www.anthuriumpublishing.com to find out about our services. In addition to the website, I have developed a workshop called “The Keys To Getting Published”. The first session of which was held in September and it was such a pleasure interacting with writers who were in various phases of their work. They were engaged, and incredibly eager to learn. They were really happy that I provided them with a printed workbook to follow along with at the workshop so that they wouldn’t have to take copious notes. It was an enjoyable experience all around. I have since decided that I am going to redesign that workbook and publish it. What can I say? It goes along with the territory. I also have to give credit to the word of mouth component that goes with networking. I make a point to mention either that I am a published author or that I run a publishing company whenever possible. I also carry business cards with me everywhere.
Q: What genres will you be focusing on?
A: Although I am clearly a writer of fiction, I still read everything. Readers are looking to be engaged, inspired, scared, surprised, educated, and enlightened by the words of others. I would encourage anyone who is interested in having their work published regardless of the genre to go ahead and check out our submission guidelines.
Q: Your Legacy Series looks beautiful! Tell us some more about why you have included it in Anthurium’s line-up of options.
A: The Legacy Series is really special. I considered my own family’s legacy and how I might go about preserving at least some of it for my children and grandchildren and so on. My mom is the matriarch of five generations. Imagine the photographs that span across decades of family events, the recipes that go back to the early 1900’s, the family stories and histories that are known by the remaining elders but have not been shared and passed down to the youth. For some families Alzheimer’s and/or dementia have eliminated the passing on of such history. The Legacy Series is what we consider a limited distribution publication and this publishing option offers a creative solution for compiling, preserving, and sharing some of those irreplaceable pieces of one’s family history with loved ones.
Q: You’ve also incorporated a fundraising aspect. How does this work?
A: I remember the days of having to help my children’s sports teams and their various club groups wash cars, sell baked goods, candy, and Christmas wrap. I’ve worked with non-profit organizations that were constantly trying to find creative ways to raise more funds. Community and church groups are oftentimes trying to raise money from the same underserved groups that they are attempting to help. There are a number of publishing projects that we can work with these groups to create that have the potential to raise funds quickly and more steadily by reaching larger audiences.
Q: Describe the dream client and the amount of participation you like to see (beyond, of course, their delivery of a good manuscript!).
A: The dream client should be excited and engaged in the publishing process. They should follow directions and instructions well. They should be prepared to move forward with each step of the process in an agreed upon time frame. They should understand that it is actually important to read through their proof copy for errors. If the dream client follows our lead, they should be very pleased with their published project.
Q: How does a potential publishing client make initial contact with Anthurium for consideration?
A: I always refer potential clients to the Anthurium publishing website because the answers to many if not most of their pre-submission questions can be found there. There are also options for contacting us by email or phone for further discussion and inquiry.
Q: What’s your favorite aspect of today’s publishing business?
A: The ability to print on demand is absolutely wonderful.
Q: Which is a greater challenge for you – to research and write your own book or to edit and publish a book by someone else?
A: Although I enjoy the research and writing process of working on a new story, the greatest challenge is being absolutely satisfied with the work before I consider it finished.
Q: What’s your personal prediction for the publishing industry 5/10/20 years from now?
A: In lieu of a personal prediction, I’m hoping that along with the continued advancements in technology that are bombarding us daily, the independent publishing industry does not lose its heart and organic foundation to a more robotic and impersonal process.
Q: How has your being an entrepreneur affected your relationships with family and friends?
A: I have always been an entrepreneur. As a matter of fact I think it’s in my family’s DNA. However, now that I am working to grow my own publishing business, many of my friends and associates are starting to be more serious about laying the ground work for their own businesses. So these are exciting times.
Q: Any new titles you’d like to give a shout-out to so we can watch for them?
A: I can’t release those actual titles to the public just yet, but we are looking forward to the release of two books of poetry and a collection of short stories during the first quarter of 2014. We will announce our publications on our website as soon as we possibly can.
Q: Where can readers learn more about you and your company?
A: Well thanks to you, Christina, through this outlet, of course. They can also visit our website at http://www.anthuriumpublishing.com and they can view my Worldwide Branding press release at http://www.worldwidewhoswhoreleases.com/press-release/adrianne-marie-hall-recognized-by-worldwide-branding-for-excellence-in-publishi
Q: Anything else you’d like to add?
A: If any of the readers have dreamed of publishing their words, thoughts, ideas, experiences, or creativity, there is no time like the present to begin the process of making it happen.