Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Wordy Wednesday - Reflections from the Editor's Desk: How a Small Press became "The Best Place on the Web"

You’ve just written the next blockbuster hit. What now? The options these days are unlimited. You could pursue an agent and submit to the big New York publishing houses. But getting an agent is easier said than done, and once you have one, he or she still has to submit your work to editors for consideration. I’ve seen otherwise stable authors broken to bits during this process.

Or you could avoid the submission process altogether and self-publish. But there are so many doing that these days, and quality is often, though not always, an issue. You’d have to arrange for an editor, a cover artist, and formatting, and pay for all those services. Some want the absolute freedom self-publishing offers. But for the rest of us, we want the advice and guidance of known experts.

Small e-publishers like Champagne offer the best of both worlds. You’ll get cracker jack editors (she says; modestly *grins*) and cover artists that our authors rave about. And we’ll do the final formatting for you. Best of all, you can still submit directly to Champagne; no agent is required. While this doesn’t guarantee acceptance of your manuscript (we publish quality fiction only) you can still expect a courteous letter back. Possibly, if your story is good but needs too much work for our editing cycle, you may receive what we call a revise and resubmit request. That’s not offered just to be nice; it’s a statement that we see possibilities in your story, but want you to do certain things before we accept it for publication. And if we do accept you for publication right off the bat, you know you have a great story that is well presented. Once you’re in house, new submissions can be sent directly to your editor, someone who you’ll know and hopefully trust by the time you’re submitting a second manuscript.

But perhaps the biggest advantage in publishing with a small house like Champagne is our support for the promotional process. Most authors I’ve encountered dread the word “promo.” Yet promo is a necessary step if you want to sell your book. In today’s world, you have to do the bulk of the promo yourself, even if you have an agent and publish with a big New York house. Most small presses offer chat rooms for their authors where you can share ideas. Champagne goes a step further, offering biweekly meetings devoted to promo and lead by our Senior Editor. Ideas are shared by all, including the editors, most of whom are also published authors. If you need help or advice to set up a website or to learn social media, it’s available through these meetings. You won’t be all alone in the vastness of cyberspace trying to publicize your book.

In case you’re wondering if Champagne’s quality equals that of the big publishers, I can assure you it does. Even well-known authors are now seeking out Champagne for their books. Support, a friendly atmosphere, quality. Our authors call Champagne “the best place on the web” for a reason.

Diane Breton

Champagne Book Group


  1. Diane is so right. Champagne offers the best there is. Ask any of the other authors and they will tell you, quality is key, editing is superior, covers are fabulous, support is always there, and friendships flourish. The owner of the company is constantly searching for other places to distribute CBG books. With a number of publishers to my credit, I think I have a background to make a judgment.
    As my grandkids would say - Champagne Rocks!

  2. I love this peek into the process at Champagne. It's one of the most organized publishers I know and, being an organizational freak, I appreciate that a lot. I haven't read a single Champagne book I haven't liked, so I definitely agree with Allison's grandkids. Champagne ROCKS!