Tuesday, April 08, 2008

The Story of Hot Apple Cider - Lindquist

Last night, the first copies of Hot Apple Cider, edited by myself and Wendy Elaine Nelles and written by 30 authors who are members of The Word Guild, were given out in the gift bags at a Girls Night Out event in Dorval, Quebec. Thus ends Part 1 of the saga of the little book that could.

The decision to create the book began in March, 2007, when I was talking to someone from World Vision Canada about their Girls Night Out events and their need for a book for the gift bag each woman receives. “We’re always looking for ways to let people know that there are some wonderful Canadian author who are Christian,” I said. “What about a compilation book?”

He thought it was a terrific idea, but since neither of us had any idea where we would find the money to produce such a book, the idea went on the backburner along with a number of other, “Wouldn’t it be great?” ideas I’ve had over the last few years. Then, in mid-September, he asked me if there was any way we could do the book. And for some reason, I knew beyond any doubt that we had to do it – had to take this opportunity. “We can only do it,” I said, “if the authors will donate the money to pay for the publishing.” My calculations led me to think we needed 20 people to make it work.

On September 19, 2007, the first call went out to authors to find out if any of them were interested in participating in a project that would result in 30,000 books going out to women across Canada, beginning in April of 2008. (April 7th as it turned out.) The catch was that the authors would not only have to send a contribution, but would also have to commit to sending a donation to help pay for the printing of the 30,000 books along with the costs for cover design, layout, etc.

By September 25th, 18 authors had shown interest. On September 29th, with another 3 authors showing interest, we made the call to go ahead.

Our first priority was the title; the second was the cover design. Both came together quite readily. The authors had until October 24th to get their submissions in. Then began the process of reading and editing the submissions, a process which in some cases was quite minor and in others more intense. Both Wendy and I read and discussed each item, and then whichever of us felt more passionate about the contents did the first edit, using track changes. We then rotated items, and after the second edit, emailed the work back to each author, beginning the editing process which in some cases took only a few back and forth emails, and in others more. In the end, 30 authors committed to the project, and bestselling Canadian author Janette Oke agreed to write the foreword for us. We had hoped for a 200-page book; we ended up with 296 pages.

Back in September, I had jotted down tentative dates by which we needed to complete each step of the process. As the weeks went by, I checked off the box beside each date. Cover ready. Check. ISBN. Check. Entries in. Check. Submissions edited. Authors approved pdfs of their work. Check. Advance Reading Copies out to endorsers. Check. Layout design ready. Check. Book laid out. Check. Book to printer. Check.

Unbelievably, on March 17th, the books were ready for shipping. 30,000 books, donated by the authors, all of whom are members of The Word Guild, to the Girls Night Out warehouse. Other books, paid for by That’s Life! Communications, the publisher, went to various distributors’ warehouse in Canada and the USA. Six short months from the day we first asked if there was any interest to the day the books shipped.

And last night, Part 2 of the story began as the first books were given out to women in Dorval.

For more information about our book, Hot Apple Cider: Words to Stir the Heart and Warm the Soul, and to get to know the authors involved, go to www.hotapplecider.ca

1 comment:

Bonnie Grove said...

Yesterday I held a copy of Hot Apple Cider for the first time. That's all I got to do; hold it. It wasn't my copy! Janice Dick said I had to give her book back to her. :)
My copies aren't here yet, but I'm thrilled to hear they are already being distributed to women at GNO events.
Our church is holding a GNO event in Saskatoon, and we are thrilled to be doing it. Grace Fox will be our fab speaker. . . hmmm. . . do I smell a book signing?
It's a great story how this amazing book of Canadian content!

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