POD TV – Program 19: Back Channel Press

POD TV has been on a short hiatus, but returns this week with Joe Smiga’s Living Your Passion, a local TV Network program in Manchester, New Hampshire. Here, he interviews husband and wife, Nancy and John Grossman who run Back Channel Press, a local company who provide publishing services for authors. The company’s services are aimed at the author who has no hands-on skills to produce print ready book files and a limited understanding of the book publishing world. Nancy herself is an editor and she describes succinctly what Back Channel Press do.

“We help authors to self-publish – we are not traditional publishers.”

I think Nancy and John Grossman are heart-warming folks and they run a really worthwhile and genuinely needed service for authors. It’s not the service for all authors, nor perhaps even the right path for their book, but, I suspect, the authors who didn’t find Back Channel Press would have ended up in the clutches of the vanity presses. I do have to say,at times during these interview segments, I felt less than entirely convinced Nancy and John themselves fully understood the publishing industry as a whole. John’s take on vanity presses and how they worked more than intrigued me. Still, this is one take on author solutions services. Grab a beer, sit back and chill out for the next half hour or so.

About Nancy and John Grossman, Owners of Back Channel Press

Nancy Grossman’s successfully self-published Placenames of Portsmouth led to the formation of Portsmouth’s newest publishing house. A complicated book with more than two hundred images, Nancy had hoped to sell it to a national publisher specializing in photo-rich local histories as the prototype for a new series. When they weren’t willing to veer from their established format to serve the needs of this particular book, she and her husband, John, decided to put his twenty years of educational publishing experience to work. The two set to work mastering the ins and outs of self-publishing and on-demand printing. Placenames arrived on the scene in 2005 to immediate local acclaim. When word of their self-publishing success made its way into reviews, other writers started knocking on their door and Back Channel Press was born.

Nancy brings a lifelong fascination with the vagaries of the English language in general and writing in particular, a degree in psychology with a minor in English, and the eye of a self-trained artist to bear on the editing and design of books. A compulsive proofreader by nature, she’s discovered she was born to be an editor. Ten years in specialized retail plus a somewhat briefer exposure to the world of advertising contribute to her eye for detail and passion for creativity. She is equally at home writing fiction, nonfiction, poetry, stage- and screenplays. She has had four young adult novels published with Tor Publishing and also enjoys writing for children.

John brings a lifetime of computer expertise (he helped install the first computer in the US Army!), the above-mentioned twenty years of experience in educational publishing and a Harvard MBA to the enterprise. His level of experience, ability and fascination with computers is well matched by his knowledge of the worlds of both traditional and digital printing. A compulsive comparative shopper, he guarantees you the best price and printer for your book and expert project management from the day you submit your manuscript to the day we deliver. When he isn’t busy pestering printers for quotes and shepherding each project through the many steps it takes to turn a manuscript into a book, he develops and maintains websites for Back Channel authors, local organizations and friends.

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