|Wessex Press display at Scintillation of Scions|
My publisher Steve Emecz, in a Skype conversation with me a few months ago, said that he considered it a compliment when one of his authors left MX Publishing to go with a bigger publisher. Although Steve has now published something like 150 Holmes books by more than 60 authors, he's essentially a one-man band.
I can understand why a writer would answer the siren song of a Penguin or a Bantam with a big name and a big marketing budget. But I have a soft spot in my heart for the intimate experience of working with a small publisher. At MX, the top guy (who is the only guy) is easy to reach and lets me work on the covers.
While MX is the largest Holmes-niche publisher in terms of books produced, it is also among the newest. Wessex Press, founded by Steven Doyle and Mark Gagen in 1992, may be the oldest. It has outlasted a number of others - including Gasogene Books, which it acquired - by producing good books in attractive editions. I have quite a few Wessex/Gasogene books in my library, but not as many as I should have.
Please support small publishers. They help to make the world a more interesting place.