Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Pubslush Is Growing

Interview With Pubslush Press Development Director Amanda Barbara

1. What is Pubslush Press? Pubslush is a publishing platform: authors raise funds and gauge the audience for new book ideas, and trendsetting readers pledge their support to bring books to life. Our publishing arm, powered by readers, acquires books from this platform, and for every book we sell, we donate a book to a child in need.  Pubslush combines the crowd sourcing power of American Idol and the philanthropy of TOMS Shoes.  We are creating a company that is all about giving; giving aspiring authors a chance at publication, giving a voice to the readers, and giving back to world literacy efforts with the Pubslush Cause.    

2. How should authors utilize your service? Pubslush is the perfect, risk-free way to gain visibility in an over saturated market, whether authors want to self-publish or be traditionally published. We provide the ability to know exactly who your audience is and if there is a market for your work. The goal of the platform is to help authors publish successfully, regardless of the route they choose. Authors will be free to use the funds they raise to self-publish, or as proof of a successful Pubslush campaign to entice agents and publishers. Most importantly, Pubslush will be exclusively for books. We will provide the resources to help any author bring their book to fruition. Authors are able to become a part of a major movement that supports literacy initiatives, new authors, new book ideas, and reader involvement!

3. What inspired its creation? Overall, Pubslush was born from the flaws and bureaucracy in the publishing industry’s talent discovery process. When our founder, Jesse Potash, learned of JK Rowling’s struggle to publishHarry Potter, he was inspired to reimagine the existing models of the industry with an unbiased and innovative mindset. Of course, Pubslush is also a tribute to the TOMS Shoes movement. By implementing a one-for-one model, we were able to create a sustainable nonprofit brand.

4. What do you do for them? As the development director for a start-up company, my role is constantly changing. Pubslush is a mobile company. We pride ourselves on being able to work from anywhere and always keep the line of communication open between our team and our writers. I have found it essential to be able to take on any role at any time. I assist with business development and fleshing out new partnerships. Over the past year, I have planned several events for our authors and been our representative at conferences all over the US and London. We are also launching our Campus Ambassador Program this fall where students on different campuses nationwide will represent Pubslush and help us raise awareness for illiteracy around the world. I also coordinated our summer internship program which is currently underway with six amazing students.

5. Tell me about the charitable component linked to book sales. The cause is our commitment to literacy initiatives for children worldwide. Our one for one program is the cornerstone: for every book we sell, we donate a book to a child in need. Pubslush’s main giving partner is Flying Kites, an orphanage in Kenya. Our founder and president had both been involved in education and human rights nonprofits before launching Pubslush. During their travels they discovered an ideal inaugural giving partner: Flying Kites, an orphanage in Kenya. Flying Kites was a perfect fit for us and something that is near and dear to our hearts. We work very closely with the organization and we are working together to fund the construction of a new library and have already funded 3 new teachers for their school. As we continue to grow as a company, we are already expanding our relationships and partnering with other organizations in Brazil and Israel. Our dream has always been to provide ereaders to children without access to literature. We are very excited and hopeful that we will be able to make this dream a reality with the help of our loyal writers and readers.

6. What advice do you have for struggling writers? My biggest piece of advice for young authors is to learn about all of your options. Read everything and anything you can get your hands on about this industry. This is an amazing time to be involved in the world of publishing because it is all changing. Social media is increasingly becoming more important and authors really have the power of bringing their books to life. Technology has provided more opportunities for becoming published and guides on how to successfully self-publish. Pubslush will also be helping our authors take that next step after they have raised money on our platform. Don’t hold back- read whatever you can and write whenever you can.

7. What trends do you think Pubslush will pioneer for the publishing industry as a whole? Pubslush’s implementation of technology will cause authors, agents, and publishers to trend towards a more informed publishing process. Publishing is such a guessing game, but it no longer has to be. By using data science, and attaching a financial value in the form of crowdfunding, publishing will benefit immensely. The reality is, if a book can’t establish a considerable audience and funding in advance of publication, it probably isn’t going to be the next Harry Potter. I hope that Pubslush will do for publishing what American Idol did for music and Threadless did for fashion by reintroducing readers back into the publishing equation. Also, I hope Pubslush will increase the professional quality of self-published books. Self-publishing is fantastic because it’s so accessible, but the quality often suffers because of financial restrictions and lack of knowledge. Pubslush provides the solution.

Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person.

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