My first steps in self-publishing

After having an idea for a children’s book, like every other retired teacher before me, I finally started writing.  Every morning I would discuss my progress with my parents who are in their 90’s.  The book is about my dachshund, Puppy, who dreams of becoming a Navy Seal dog after seeing an interview with a Seal dog in TV.  My dad thought that Puppy was not a good name for a Seal dog and that there should be a scene in which Puppy decides to change his name.  He suggested names for the dog:  Pupford, Pupton, Pupstead, Puply.  We laughed over this.  So it went until the book was finally finished.

I needed illustrations.  I first asked a high school friend of mine who is a good artist if she was interested.  At first she was and drew one illustration.  But, as often is the case, she got busy with her own life with people of her own age and our communication on Facebook stopped.  Next I asked the retired art teacher who lives across the street, but she didn’t want to commit the time she knew it would take to do a good job.

Next I went to the internet and googled children’s book publishers.  The first one that came up was Authorhouse.  After skimming their web page, I submitted a query.  The next day I received a call from a pleasant gentleman with an accent I couldn’t identify.  I thought it was perhaps Australian or New Zealand, maybe UK, because English was his first language, just not USA.  For 3 months there after, he would call me periodically at lunch time because he was in Indiana and I am in Arizona.  He was not pushy or overbearing, just persistent.  I would tell him that my husband didn’t want to invest in the project.  He would tell me to keep him in mind.  Then one day, he sent me an email with a special offer and an adorable illustration of a dachshund with an old fashioned aviator’s helmet on.  The dog had a noble face and that wrinkled neck that all dachshund’s have.  I was smitten.  I told my dad about it and he said, “Publish your book and I will pay for it.” 

I begin to have dreams of being a famous author, of having a source of income, of being a source of pride for my children, the same dreams all human beings have!  So, I went to the bank and told the teller I needed a cashier’s check for $1,689.  She asked me which account, naming several, and I told her the one.  However, days later after Daddy kept checking online (he’s 99, but isn’t afraid of technology) we discovered that the check had come out of my and my husband’s account!  Ha Ha!  Actually, now I’m glad that happened.

I sent the check and the project was on!

Why this page?

This page will do two things:  chronicle my journey through self-publishing and give teachers some activities and ideas to use with my self-published book, “Puppy, the Navy Seal Dachshund.”

Available at Authorhouse:


Barnes and Noble: