I was always a weird (um, naughty) kid. I never aligned myself with social norms. I recognized when something was ridiculous, even if “everyone else” was doing it. I would do things differently, despite the fact that doing so occasionally led to being an outcast.
BookLocker is an unconventional company that has far outlived many of its competitors because…we’re weird. Yes, family members, friends, and even business associates have guffawed at our life choices simply because we have chosen NOT to live by the standard nuclear family model, nor to run our business like just about everyone else runs theirs. And, in the end, it has greatly benefited us and our children, our employees and their children, and our authors as well.
The unique choices we have made in our lives are why we are still in business after so many of our competitors have gone belly-up. And, our odd lifestyle is why our prices are so low for our authors. It’s the trickle-down effect!
Live on a Mountain in Northwest Georgia, and Homeschool Our Children
There’s no faster way to go belly-up when the economy tanks than to mortgage yourself to the hilt. If I can give any young person one piece of advice, this is it. Do NOT buy more house than you could afford if you lost your job! After protests and other civil unrest forced us out of St. Petersburg in 2020, we sold our sailboat, and moved to a rural town in Northwest Georgia where we are now growing our own crops on top of a mountain. Oddly enough, we have fiber Internet here!
With regards to homeschooling, doing so actually gives you MORE time to work. You’re not rushing around each morning getting the kids out the door, you’re not attending parent/teacher conferences or participating in fundraisers, and you’re not running to the drugstore at midnight for supplies for that forgotten science fair project. I will admit that, yes, the children have always had math tutors. I know my limits! Their other classes are online so it’s really easy. Our children have excellent manners (they didn’t learn bad ones from other kids), and are very social, highly intelligent, and, most importantly, happy. We’ve been homeschooling for 20 years now and I wish we’d started even earlier than that.
I highly recommend it! Spending less on ourselves means we can give our authors lower prices AND take better care of our employees. And, no clutter to worry about!!
Don’t Have a Snooty Corporate Office
In the same spirit as a stifling mortgage, renting offices, having too many employees, and buying a granite conference table and other extravagances is completely unnecessary. And, this type of overspending is what got many of our defunct competitors into trouble.
Some business owners, quite full of themselves, love to hire too many people (who treat them like royalty when they walk down the office hallway). Personally, I abhor office politics and I really can’t stand crowds. I get FAR more done each day working on my laptop at home. I communicate with our employees using WhatsApp. The window is always open on my screen and, whenever they need me, my laptop dings.
Make Our Employees Work From Home
When literally everything we do is online (our printer is located in another state), why force people to get up, and drive through traffic for work, when they can simply work from their own homes, and be with their children? Of course, you have to find the best of the best employees when using this business model. It takes a lot of discipline to basically work for yourself all day, every day. And, we’ve been successful at that because our folks are amazing! The secret is finding people who LOVE to work!
When the pandemic hit, literally NOTHING in our business changed!
Are Generous with Our Employees
If you have really good people working for you, you darned well better make sure they’re taken care of! Everyone at BookLocker is paid well, given bonuses for their hard work, and given more holidays than any company I know. They even get their birthday off as a paid holiday.
Give Our Employees Control Over Their Own Work
Nobody wants a boss breathing down their neck, especially if they are well-trained and autonomous. And, I certainly don’t want to spend my day nitpicking anyone’s work. As long as our folks get their jobs done, and done on time, we let them control their own schedules and tasks. And, since they are all so happy in their jobs, I don’t have to worry about a thing.
I think a lot of the problems at larger companies occur because of narcissistic control issues. The owner/boss funnels their employees into an office door each day, demands respect (a silent salute from everyone, if you will), has elaborate offices to make people (even their employees) think they’re successful, and spends too much on themselves instead of being generous with their employees (and giving their customers lower prices). And, later, they wonder why they went out of business…
Booklocker started as a one-woman operation. My writing website, WritersWeekly.com, was created in the wee hours of the morning after my “real job” ended each day, and after my children were in bed. I was going through a divorce back then, and getting no child support. Some of you have read about my refrigerator being broken back then, and needing to give the kids lukewarm powdered milk with their cereal in the mornings.
I lost my job shortly thereafter, and was able to work on my “little hobby website” (what my ex-husband called it) full-time. WritersWeekly quickly grew, and eventually morphed into the successful publishing company, BookLocker.com. I’ll never forget those lean times and I still live lean today. Doing so has enabled BookLocker to grow exponentially because we take good care of everyone (employees, contractors, and authors alike), and we don’t live beyond our means.
So, you see, being weird has its benefits!
- How BookLocker Has Remained Profitable for 20 Years…when so many others have failed
- How We Prepare The “Home Office For HURRICANES!
- BookLocker is Now Offering “D.I.Y.” and “Payment Plan” Publishing Programs!
- 9 Surprising Benefits Of Homeschooling…And Why It’s SO Easy!
- Yes, We Live On a Boat!
Got questions about Print On Demand and Self-publishing? Ask Angela Hoy.
About The Author
Angela Hoy is the publisher of WritersWeekly.com, the author of 19 books, and the co-owner of BookLocker.com (one of the original POD publishers that still gets books to market in less than a month), PubPreppers.com (print and ebook design for authors who truly want to self-publish), and Abuzz Press (the publishing co-op that charges no setup fees).
Angela has lived and traveled across the U.S. with her kids in an RV, settled in a river-side home in Bradenton, FL, and lived on a 52 ft Irwin sailboat. Angela now resides on a mountaintop in Northwest Georgia, where she plans to spend the rest of her days bird watching, gardening, hiking, and taking in all of the amazing sunrises.
WritersWeekly.com - the free marketing ezine for writers, which features new paying markets and freelance job listings every Wednesday.
BookLocker.com - According to attorney Mark Levine, author of The Fine Print, BookLocker is: "As close to perfection as you're going to find in the world of ebook and POD publishing. The ebook royalties are the highest I've ever seen, and the print royalties are better than average. BookLocker understands what new authors experience, and have put together a package that is the best in the business. You can't go wrong here. Plus, they're selective and won't publish any manuscript just because it's accompanied by a check. Also, the web site is well trafficked. If you can find a POD or epublisher with as much integrity and dedication to selling authors' books, but with lower POD publishing fees, please let me know."
Abuzz Press offers FAST and FREE book publication, but only accepts a small percentage of submissions, and only works with U.S. authors.
PubPreppers.com - "We Prep, You Publish!" Print and ebook design for authors who truly want to self-publish. Offers formatting and design services only, and then provides simple instructions for authors on where to sign up to have the print and ebook editions printed/listed/sold. Cut out the middle man. Keep 100% of what bookstores pay for your book!
Angela's POD Secrets Revealed Series can be found HERE.
Have a POD Book with another publisher? See if BookLocker can give you a better deal. (BookLocker offers "disgruntled author discounts" to those who want to move from other POD services.)
See BookLocker's publishing packages HERE.
ANGELA ON TWITTER https://twitter.com/AngelaHoy
BOOKLOCKER ON FACEBOOK - Provides links to free excerpts!
ANGELA ON FACEBOOK
ANGELA ON LINKEDIN
Angela is the creator of the Original 24-Hour Short Story Contest!
Read More Of Angela's Articles HERE
Make Sure Your Marketing is Targeted at the Right Audience
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