It should be clear by now that I am alwasy involved in some manner of something or other. For years now I have felt endlessly frustrated when I am not being creative or working on a project so I tend to end up getting mixed up into some caper or another.
For the past three years my friend Paul and I have been talking about the idea of starting a publishing house. Very low key, very DIY, and thus very manageable. We know a mess of authors, we know a lot of artists, and together we both have a lot of experience on both sides of the table, as it were – as authors and as buyers. Now, we’re not insane, there are a TON of publishers out there and a lot of people either desperate to make it rich or make it big. For us, it’s about neither. We completely understand how crazy we are but we also wanted to do something our way, in a way that is different than a lot of folks are doing.
Again, maybe we’re crazy.
In my mind, I wanted to do low cost, weirdo books and collections that were ‘pocket-sized’ and as inexpensive as we could make them. A throwback to the books and era that got us into reading genre fiction.
Again, I get that we’re crazy.
But the thing is that we had a pretty decent plan and idea, and if it worked out, great, but if it didn’t take off then it wasn’t a huge investment and we hopefully still had fun. However this works out, that’s the point, to have fun, to support people we respect and admire, and to put something out there that isn’t just like everything else.
After talking about things long enough I thought that this was the year.
What did we have to lose?
The rare good thing about this current time we live in allowed us to create, promote, and support the book without having to focus so much on events, a big cost, and then ew can see how things go and lead up to doing shows eventually while we get to live with the project and get to know it better.
Makes sense to me.
This, like every project, got dragged out because life kept getting in the way, as it does. Sometimes though you have to make the time for something, you have to force the project a little or it will never get done. That was what happened here. Either we were going to make this happen or we were always going to wonder What If…
So we pushed forward.
We are no different than anyon else and we both have a lot of projects that have never made it to fruition (yet!) and the last thing I wanted was for this to be piled on that heap. And here’s what I tell anyone who says they want to do anything – the hardest part is finishing it. The ideas are the easy part, it’s seeing them through that takes so much of us. THAT is what takes the most work.
This dream was important enough for us to talk about and dream about for several years so it was important enough to finish it.
So great, we’re gonna do it!
But what IS this ‘It’?
A couple of years ago me, Paul, and another friend had written Bigfoot stories for a podcast we do – shameless plug for The Ghoul Cast podcast – and two things came to me at once – why not use those stories, which had all turned out super different and interesting and why don’t we lean on authors we know for this project?
Since this was our first time doing this we were figuring it out as we went along so we thought that the best way to do that was to tab authors we knew and trusted and who trusted us. We decided to do a collection of Sasquatch stories, the core of those coming from what we’d done before. I was going to write for the book, Paul was going to write for it, and our pal Lucifer Fulci joined us and we wanted one more author and turned to another local author named Josh Davis, who was excited to pen a Bigfoot story.
We figured out compensation and got the other two writers to work on their stories and I worked on a new one to have two stories in the book and Paul did the same – we needed to fill it out and we weren’t paying ourselves so it made sense.
Next was the look of the book and our imprint.
We had batted a few names around and every time we found one we liked we discovered another project with that name. We finally settled on Goblin Holler as the name on the shingle with the understanding that someone somewhere probably has something with that name but now we do to.
With the name in place we started creating our little identity and decided to not limit ourselves to JUST books in case we want to work on other projects some day.
If this works out then why limit ourselves?
OK, so we have the name, the project…we needed a look.
As I mentioned earlier we know a LOT of artists and so we had a lot of options to look towards for the book’s cover and our logo but Paul knows someone who is a well regarded author that has worked for Mad Magazine and he had a look that really captured the imagination of our project. Artist David DeGrand nailed the look for our logo and the cover. He created something both whimsical and scary and it’s the exact type of look we wanted and was the tone we wanted to set. Mr. DeGrand was even nice enough to pen the intro to our little terror tome and Paul penned the outro.
The timetable for the project was pretty aggressive – we started things in June/July and wanted to have the book out by October – but we felt like this was something we could do if we all really focused on it – meaning me and Paul.
I am happy to say that as of October 1st the first release from Goblin Holler arrived! UNIMAGINABLE – Tales of the Sasquatch is more than just a passion project, it’s a strange little beast with wildly different takes on the most famous of all cryptids, Bigfoot. There are horror stories, a funny story, a ghost story, something a little more whimiscal, and it’s all weird and wonderful. We are so happy that this book us out and that the world gets to share our dream and we are thrilled.
We are hoping you might want to check out our project and hey, you get two new stories from me, which is pretty neat!