how she did it

Case Studies // Self-publishing a 10-Book West...

Self-publishing a 10-Book Western Romance Series

This story is about…

Female Entrepreneur: Amanda A. Brooks

Location: USA

Company: aab Publishing

Industry: Self-publishing

She started her business because she watched High Noon and it changed her life.

What motivated you to start your business?

The night I saw High Noon on the big screen was the night that changed my life forever – for the better. I was mesmerized the moment the late, great Tex Ritter (Father of the late, great John Ritter) started singing the opening notes to the movie’s theme song Do Not Forsake Me, Oh My Darlin’, a song that became a running, haunting score throughout the film. I fell in love with the story and the setting of High Noon. I booed the bad guys, and I cursed the townspeople. My heart ached when no one would help Gary Cooper defeat the bad guys, and raced when the only person who helped him was Grace Kelly – who was against violence because of her religion. I loved watching a young Lloyd Bridges deal with his confliction – whether or not to help Gary Cooper. Aside from Gary Cooper, my favorite character was that of saloon owner, and Cooper’s ex-lover, played by the beautiful, Mexican actress Katy Jurado. It was Katy’s meaty role that helped me to create the role of my own saloon owner heroine, Julia.

Because of High Noon, I decided to create a ten-book western romance series set in 1880’s Colorado. It was not my intention to self-publish my series. Blogging was good enough for me. Until I woke up one morning, and thought, I want to self-publish – thanks to my dear, dear friend, Peggy Miller, who passed away in 2008. Peggy and I shared a love for romance novels, and she told me about her self-publishing stint – which had cost her an arm and a leg. Thanks to her, I knew it was the only way to go – as long as it was cheap (er).

Thanks to my love for westerns in both books and movies, I feel like I have the experience to tell stories that are just as good – maybe even better. When I write, I write as if the reader will be reading a film. My stories are filled with rich settings, dialogue, and conflict, rich characters – good and bad – whose stories are begging to be told. But more importantly, my stories are not just about romance and sex. My stories are about love, family, and community.

I chose to self-publish, because it was the only way I could be in control. I didn’t want my voice to be lost. I didn’t want my vision for my cover art to be lost. Good stories come from editing, but great stories come from the author’s heart and soul.

Tell us about your business…

My business allows me to create and write amazing stories without going broke.

What is a day in the life of you like?

My life is not that interesting. I go to work (Landmark Theaters), and when I’m not working, I’m either writing, watching DVDs, listening to music, reading books, or out with friends.

What have been your biggest challenges so far with running your business?

Finding the right people – for the right price – to help me with my cover art and text formatting. Finding people who won’t let me down. It has not been an easy road. it’s been a challenging road – often frustrating at times.

How did you overcome these challenges?

Some patience, and a lot of praying and tears.

What have you found to be the most effective way to get new clients?

Facebook. I have to self-promote my own work. People treat that like it’s the F word. I just ignore them, and keep self-promoting away. It works.

What advice would you give to other business owners?

Follow your dream. Do what you love. Don’t give up. Be smart when it comes to the people you hire, and the money you spend.

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

Praying, and knowing that the end result will be BRILLIANT!

What’s your favourite quote?

The way to love someone is to lightly run your finger over that person’s soul until you find a crack, and then gently pour your love into that crack….

The spaces between your fingers were created so that another’s could fill them in.

Do you have a business philosophy?

Be your own accountant. Don’t let anyone handle your money but you. Balance every penny to the cent. Know what you have made.

Get in touch…


Twitter Name: augustblue

Facebook Fanpage: I’m under Amanda A. Brooks

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