Boulder is ripe with startups, there’s no argument there. Today, we’re introducing you to FG Press, a startup dedicated to helping authors the world over regain control of the publishing world – one book at a time.
Remember the old way of publishing? You get a book deal, you celebrate, you plan a book tour, and you’re certain this is going to be your big moment. Then, your publisher takes control, creative license, and most of the money from the sales, even though most of your sales came from your own marketing and distribution points. Ultimately, your book begins gathering dust on whatever shelves it now calls home and your publisher signs the next in line.
Now, imagine you’ve just written your first book. Or your tenth.
You shop it around and land on the doorstep of FG Press.
There might not be any eye-popping royalty advances; however, what does await you is a community of authors and passionate readers excited to hear what you have to say and ready to share your work with their friends and colleagues. (It’s just like the Fabergé commercial – “and they’ll tell two friends and they’ll tell two friends and so on and so on.”)
Yes, FG Press does everything traditional publishers do to make sure your words are edited, bound, and made pretty for the shelves. But they also take it a giant step further by including a dynamic network of authors eager to shepherd you through the process. That’s something you’ll never find with traditional publishers.
When you have access to a community of experienced authors with growing platforms that are supporting each other, mentoring each other, sharing tips and resources, and doing what they can to help you have a successful book launch, your chances of being seen and heard go through the roof.
That’s what FG Press, the latest venture from Foundry Group, is all about. After years of being frustrated with traditional publishers and how slow the industry was progressing, Foundry Group decided to be a player in solving the problem. With Dane McDonald leading the charge as CEO, FG Press is well on its way.
We sat down with Dane to learn more about FG Press and to find out what he likes best about building a business in Boulder.
How did you become the leader of FG Press?
I graduated from the University of Missouri Columbia in 2008 and I set my sights on working for Foundry Group. I moved to Boulder and spent three years trying to get my foot in the door. I helped out on projects they were working on, showed up every day at their office to do work, and made it clear that I wanted a full time gig. I graduated from CU with my MBA in 2011 and eventually my determination paid off. FG Press was the perfect opportunity for me to take on a big idea and make something of it.
What are your big goals for FG Press?
I want to transform the publishing experience for authors. Going with big publishers is more often than not a soul-sucking endeavor. Self-publishing is exhausting and it’s really easy to spend a lot of money, energy, and time and still get lost. At FG Press we’re making our authors feel like royalty. We’ve taken what we’ve learned from publishing many books the traditional way and we’ve reimagined and reinvented what book publishing is all about.
What kind of authors do you work with?
Initially we thought we’d stick to a specific niche, but we’re realizing we don’t need to. Our authors are writing about entrepreneurship, technology, start-ups, science fiction, food, you name it.
How do you decide if you’ll take an author on?
We ask ourselves one question: Does this person pursue excellence in all that they do? Meaning, we don’t want to just bring on a book. We want to bring on authors and the entire story they bring with them. When we take on a project we become fully embedded with the author; therefore, we have to really care about who they are, their message, and what they’re bringing to the shelves.
What do you think it is about Boulder that makes some of the fastest growing start-ups call it home?
Boulder is a very open and non-judgmental town. You can come here from anywhere and not feel like an outsider. Also, talent moves freely and swiftly from location to location so it’s really easy to find your gig, especially if you work in the technology space.
What are the three things that stand out about living in Boulder versus other cities you’ve lived?
The vibrancy of the community and community engagement, the eclectic professional crowd, and the fact that you never know who you’re sitting next to at a coffee shop. The young guy in a t-shirt and flip flops with a bike rack on his ancient car may very well be the owner of a highly successful start-up. You don’t find that in other towns.
What’s your favorite place to hunker down with an author or have meetings with your partners?
Best brunch spot?
Your favorite “inside tip” to share with ambitious and new Boulder residents?
Get involved. You have to give before you get. There are a lot of people who come here wanting what you want. You have to want it more.
Want to stay in touch with FG Press and Dane: Here’s how:
Follow FG Press on Twitter.
Follow Dane on Twitter.
Follow the FG Press Blog.
Share the news with a fellow author!