By Betsy Thorpe
Published by Westview, Bellevue’s author-friendly book company, will soon mark the first anniversary of their split from their parent company, Westview Publishing. The print-on-demand book publishing division was originally launched in 2003 as a subdivision of Westview Publishing, in response to numerous requests the company received from local authors, and to further the Westview’s interest in serving Middle Tennessee’s artistic and literary community.
Published by Westview, Inc., which officially branched off on its own last year, is a cross between self-publishing and a traditional publishing company. They are technically a “subsidy press,” meaning the author pays the company to do the layout, design the cover, provide the ISBN number, and complete the various other tasks that go along with publishing a book. They also pay royalties to authors for books sold.
The majority of Westview’s publications are “Print On Demand” or POD, a digital printing option that makes it possible for authors to purchase one copy of a book at a time, or thousands. POD is ideal for writers who want to hold down expenses while having the option of ordering exactly the number of books they need, when they need them. Published by Westview offers POD through Lightning Source, an Ingram subsidiary, and also through a number of specialty printing presses.
The company, owned by Paula Underwood-Winters and Mary Catharine Nelson, currently hosts a roster of close to 200 published authors (as of April 9, 2009). Nashville is home to an extraordinary community of writers and 77 of the authors listed on the company’s roster live in Nashville and its surrounding counties, with the remaining authors residing throughout the United States and in various foreign countries. The company’s global reputation of offering professional and affordable self-publishing options is rapidly spreading.
Working with authors who publish a wide range of genres, Published by Westview’s books include novels, autobiographies, genealogical histories, cookbooks, textbooks, motivational works and poetry. Co-owner Mary Catharine Nelson said, “I believe everyone should be able to be a published author. I take great delight in turning ideas into books and creating book packages that makes our authors happy.” Nelson, who is herself a published author, understands the sense of achievement writers experience when they see their works in print for the first time. Mary Catharine does most of the internal layout and design, and occasionally designs covers as well.
Nelson’s business partner, Paula Underwood-Winters, brings more than thirty years of publishing, editing and photographic experience to their company. Trained as a photographer, Ms. Underwood-Winters utilizes her artist’s eye to create original graphic layouts for most of their customers’ book covers. She said, “Our covers are all customized. We never use templates. Each one is individual to the author and we work one-on-one with the author to create the cover perfect for their book.” She also creates the “layout on books that require more options, such as books with numerous photos.” Ms. Underwood-Winters is “always trying to find new book projects.”
There are no hidden fees built into the author’s cost of publishing and printing their book at Westview, however, the experienced staff at Published by Westview will provide additional services if requested. For instance, Published by Westview can provide an author with ghost writing, proof-reading and editing for an additional fee. Ms. Underwood-Winters stated, “We do as much or as a little as the author wants; we understand we are publishing their book and what we want is for them to be happy with the finished product.”
The cost for publishing a book through Published by Westview is $799. That includes layout, design, custom color cover (front and back), and much more. In that respect, they are unlike many companies that make you think you are getting everything for one low price until you start adding up all the extras that can increase their price to more than $2,000 – usually for the same services you get from Published by Westview for just $799.
Published by Westview is located in Bellevue, and any writer or author with a book, an idea, or a dream is encouraged to contact Mary Catharine Nelson at 615-646-6134. For more information on Published by Westview or to learn more about their authors, visit publishedbywestview.com or email Mary Catharine at firstname.lastname@example.org or Paula at email@example.com.