Earlier this year, the editor that helped me write my first book reached out to me out of the blue. She said the book, The Smell Collector, had stuck with her for years and had often wondered what had happened to it. I told her about my journey in self publishing and how I had published the book as Whiff on Amazon using Kindle Direct Publishing. As we chatted, she revealed that she had started a publishing/media company called Kentstead Media and that she was interested in publishing something of mine. We talked about what Whiff could become with her team behind it. We signed a contract and began working with the possibility of something new out of Whiff. What we ended up with was an expanded work with a whole new character arc and many improvements on the original content. A Whiff of Life and Death, my latest novel, was born. Woo hoo!
It has been such a joy to have a company devoted to the success of my writing. I cried with the deep sense of relief and joy that I was no longer in this alone. I’d felt so isolated. I hadn’t been quite sure if I was any good, and now I had a publisher investing in my work and in ME.
This is a team with a vision, not just to make a killing on selling books, but a mission to have a meaningful impact on the world. The owner and chief editor of the company, Bethany Tolley, is a talented visionary. Her vision? The Truth Experience.
A “truth experience” is what happens when we interact with any type of media and we come away with a strong desire to do better, be better, try harder, reach a little further for our dreams, work a little harder at our talents, and help others find peace and joy in life.
That’s what she sees in me and in my writing. I do want my writing to be entertaining, but I am a person who seeks meaning and seeks to share it in whatever I do. I want my writing to have an impact. I want my characters and their experiences to feel real–to provide a reader with a powerful brush with some universal truth. I don’t mean testimonials or sermons or doctrines. Through my characters, I want readers to experience what it’s like to be broken and become whole, what it’s like to be lonely and find love or reconciliation, to lose a loved one and find solace and healing, or to feel worthless and despised and experience redemption. Beneath the humor, the romance, the plots, the drama, and the suspense of my writing, these themes are always in motion whether I mean for them to be or not. And that’s why Kentstead and I are such a good fit.
The company is new–founded in 2019. It is still in a startup phase and has the energy of a startup company. Everyone involved seems to have a sense of teamwork and wanting the company become a success–including myself.
The reason it is called Kentstead Media and not Kentstead Publishing is because they are venturing into any form of media that can have an impact–that can draw people into a “truth experience”. Film is on the horizon for them and possibly for my work. On their site, you will find visual art, video, books, blogs, and fiction serials. I encourage you to visit their site and see what tickles your fancy!