Now: Father Sky Publishing
Before there was a company, there was a book, The Beginning Teacher’s Resource Handbook, which I wrote over the course of the 1981-1982 school year, started as a series of handouts for the 12 first-year teaching interns with whom I’d was working through the University of New Mexico. Once it was clear that I had an actual product for the coming year (and new group of interns), I realized that I needed to establish myself as a business. Only two years out of the classroom and with no business training, I met with fellow educator, counselor Judy Lawrence, who had, at that time, already established herself and her self-published budget book, to find out how I needed to proceed.
A dinner meeting left me with a long, overwhelming list of things to do which, one by one, I ticked off over the course of the next six months. By our follow-up meeting soon after that, I had thought up a name (Instructional Support Services), set up a separate bank account, gotten some letterhead printed (reflecting the off-site company mailing address), filled out the necessary paperwork with the state of New Mexico, and was ready to go.
Although Instructional Support Services was the name of the company, the whole point of having a company—at least at first—was to write, print, market, and sell copies of my first book. So when the book was ready to go to press, it seemed like I needed a separate division of the company, one that sounded like a publishing company. (Mind you, I had not yet worked with any actual publishers yet.) So I printed the books under the imprint I.S.S. Publishing. And so an empire was born. Ha!
Although the rights to this book were eventually sold (first to David S. Lake Publishing which was sold to several other publishers before going out of print), in the coming years, there were other books, including a co-authored book called Parents in a Pressure Cooker and the still-in-print Rx: Handwriting. I met several authors who had resources they wanted to get into print and for a while (back in the 1980s), was involved in co-publishing book with these authors—with the help of a graphic artist and typesetter—until I just got too busy to oversee such ventures.
I.S.S. Publications was relatively quiet for a while, although when I needed to self-publish a version of 21st Century Discipline until a new edition came out, I had a company branch to cover that project. Same thing when we got the rights back to Daily Riches and released a second edition under the original title, Magic, Miracles and Synchronicity, although by the time the ePub version of that book came out in 2018, we had started using Father Sky Publishing as our primary imprint.
Over the years, the publishing industry has undergone tremendous changes and will sweep my work along in its wake. Clearly the latest directions include print-on-demand and ePublishing. I am in the process of having a number of self-published, unpublished, and out-of-print books converted, as well as producing books for which I have regained the rights, made available under this new imprint. You can expect to see new items released in coming years in various formats through this channel.
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