PEGGY LEA BAKER
Although a native of southern California, Peggy has had the privilege of living in and traveling to a few exciting places over the years. A combination of journal entries, an accumulation of vacation photos, and a boat-load of memories have hung around and provided enjoyable moments off and on. Ultimately, many of these have become some of the sources from which she draws her ideas, create imagery, and develops characters and storylines.
Ms. Baker’s serious writing adventure began with the publication of her first novel, Desperate Measures. It was published in 2008 and available in hardcover and paperback through a vanity press. “Although I was thrilled to see my book in print” she said, she further explains that sales were nearly non-existent due to steep pricing determined by the publisher. When asked about vanity press publishing today, she continues to encourage budding authors to avoid them. “Explore Smashwords instead!” Using a vanity press was an expensive learning experience which drove her to explore other options. A chance glance at a post on LinkedIn, led her to Smashwords and she’s been a great fan of it and its founder, Mark Coker, ever since .
“I had an opportunity to attend a forum and workshop a number of years ago, in Marin, California. The speaker and workshop leader was Mark Coker, founder and CEO of Smashwords.com. I had already published two books at Smashwords and the opportunity to meet and listen to Mark in person was phenomenal.”
She went on to explain that during a break between the morning speech and the afternoon workshops, all participants were asked to stand and introduce themselves.
“I happened to be sitting directly behind Mr. Coker. When it was my turn to stand, I introduced myself and stated that ‘I publish with Smashwords.’ Mark immediately looked around at me with a big grin. After that ‘meet and greet’ he stood up, shook my hand, and we spend a marvelous few minutes talking about publishing. For those few minutes he concentrated on me and my publishing hopes and dreams, as a crowd huddled around to listen. It was amazing. I’ll never forget it.”
When asked where she sees her authoring and publishing headed, she enthusiastically explains that writing will always be a pleasurable activity. “I will continue to write because it provides me a wonderful outlet to expound on topics interesting to me, especially in a fictional setting. And I intend to continue to publish with Smashwords.com because I believe in the power of indie writing and publishing.
We finally wondered about print copies of her books. “I am exploring a possible avenue to publish hardcover and paperback versions of my books. I am very aware that there will always be avid readers who love to physically turn the pages. If and when I’m satisfied with a print-on-demand (POD) provider, I’ll most certainly let everyone know!