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Horror Served Up On A Cold Budget And A Military Paycheck

Horror Served Up On A Cold Budget And A Military Paycheck Sinister Press, a new player in the horror entertainment industry is the product of horror writer Michael Schuhler and was created on virtually no budget.

In the late months of 2010, Michael Schuhler decided to take a step further than just writing horror. He began work on creating what is now known today as Sinister Press. Taking this venture towards publishing others was a decision based on wanting to help other writers get noticed in addition to his own work. Not wanting his work published under a house whose brand just doesn’t appeal to the genre was a motivator for starting Sinister Press.

Taking on a publishing company involved more than writing and editing. It required making connections in marketing, and getting acquainted with those who have a voice in the genre. Laws were another part of the process; learning copyright law, foreign rights, as well as author royalties and taxes added to the list.

Time management became a standard in the business. As an active duty U.S. Marine, Schuhler has to devote some free time to his business tasks. Nights and weekends are used for accomplishing the things needed to be done, including writing his own work.

Starting up a new business with a small budget is no simple task. Taking the plunge into the publishing world, like all businesses is about keeping costs at their lowest, especially in the beginning. Devoting small portions of paychecks, royalties and a tax return was needed in order to acquire the basics. Using Volusion, an E-Commerce website provider, Sinister Press got its storefront up and running for a reasonable price (under $100). The next step was obtaining the International Standard Book Numbers (ISBN) from the U.S. ISBN Agency, Bowker. The ISBNs are used to identify a Publisher of a book or similar product like E-Books. This cost can range from $500 to $1000 or more based on the number of ISBNs being issued.

Horror Served Up On A Cold Budget And A Military Paycheck The costs don’t stop there, every project being published has costs associated with it. Editors and artists come with a price. A few websites likes and allow someone to post a job to be done and freelancers will respond with a quote. You are able to basically shop around and pick the best freelancer for the job that quotes within your budget. This also can be expensive and you may end up with results that are sub par or just didn’t quite meet expectation. This can be solved through your networking.

Networking will come eventually for no cost as long as you are ready to do the legwork. Facebook, Twitter and Linked In have proven to be valuable in getting connected with others that can serve your industry. Artists and editors frequently get in touch with Sinister Press looking to provide services. The best advice in networking is to maintain a continuous relationship with any professional that takes the time to seek you out for a connection. You never know when you will need them, so load up those contacts in your email provider.

Sinister Press is still in its early stages of marketing. When on a small budget, marketing does not come easy and can be very daunting. Using social networks are a good start. Increasing visibility as a genre publisher has its perks. There are large pools of people who are fans just like you and think the genre is the greatest ever, the key is to just connect with them. Running Facebook ads are useful as well, setting a budget in the beginning of about $40 per month is a good start and as business increases, then your budget does.

For book distribution and printing, Sinister Press chose as they provide low costs for printing and reasonable distribution rates. For $75 per title, a book can be placed in international distribution channels, which allow it to be picked up by major book sellers.

The smartest move made by Sinister Press was that it never took out loans. The company has zero debt, leaving it plenty of breathing room to grow without stressing over paying the bank.

The best advice that can be given at this point is to respect the work of the author. A writer spends countless hours over writing and riding their own emotional rollercoaster consisting of both self-doubt and anticipation. Keeping it as original as possible is crucial to Sinister Press. Taking recommendations from a writer as cover art goes is also as important. For example, with Steven Shiverdecker’s Morbid Testimony, Joel Robinson of was suggested by Shiverdecker for the cover art. Robinson is a very talented horror artist and is always attending conventions across the country. The cover art Robinson created was above all expectations; his style was the perfect match for the book.

Sinister Press is operating smoothly on a steadily increasing budget, and all it took was some budgeting, time, and patience. You can visit Sinister Press on the web at and its products can be found in a number of bookstores online such as Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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