Jeff Rasley’s experience with traditional publishing left him disillusioned and inspired him and his wife to start their own indie publishing company. Read more about Jeff’s journey and how he learns the ropes of self-publishing.
1. Give me the “elevator pitch” for your book in five to ten sentences.
Monsters of the Midway: The Worst Team in College Football? is my most recent book.
In 1969, amidst the culture of sex, drugs, rock and roll, the draft lottery, the anti-war movement and radical feminism, the University of Chicago resurrected its football team after it had been dead for 30 years. A small town Hoosier kid who just wanted to get the best education possible joins the team to build his resume. His teammates are jocks, pot smokers and nerdy intellectuals. Along with his teammates he is swept into the tumult of the late 1960s. He falls in love with a radical feminist who demonstrates against the return of football to Chicago. He rooms with a secular Jewish kid taking ballet whose father has begun manufacturing something called a computer chip.
An assistant coach rides Jack for not fully committing to the team. His favorite professor chides him to concentrate on his studies. What sustains Jack through the bewildering cultural milieu, and the pressure of balancing sports and studies, is the tolerant understanding of his head coach, reconciliation with his girlfriend, and the friendship of his teammates.
2. Why did you become an indie writer?
I thought I was very lucky to publish my first book the traditional way and the publisher even spent some money on a publicist. But the publisher refused to use the title I had chosen and used one I did not like; issued the book on an “accelerated schedule” six months after it was finished; published with a few typos despite three levels of editing; demanded I engage in time-consuming and unproductive promotional events; let the publicist get away with doing nothing except mailing the book to reviewers and libraries; and lost interest in promoting the book when sales did not quickly reach best seller level.
I have since published five direct. The titles are my own choice and the books are published as soon as they are finished. Now, I still find myself engaging in time-consuming and unproductive promotional activities and I might have missed some typos. And I sure wish someone would pay me an advance. But, the gain in control and responsibility is worth the sacrifice.
My wife, Alicia Rasley, has published twice as many books as I have. We have become so jazzed about the process of direct publishing we started our own indie publishing company to help others through the process of direct publishing. It’s called Knowledge Capture Publishing & Editing.