Susan Chehak

Susan Chehak is the 'driving force' behind Foreverland Press.

"Once I started using those services, the whole process became simpler and faster and easier for everyone."

We were delighted to interview Susan Chehak who runs Foreverland Press, a Publishing Service and community that helps rekindle authors books who may have been forgotten in the digital age. According to the website they are "BRINGING BACK THE BACKLIST". The authors at Foreverland Press have won awards and done great things in the past and today. We recommend that you visit Foreverland Press and read what Susan Chehak has to say about authors that want to get recognized in the digital age.

Before you discovered 1DollarScan you were scanning your own books. How did you go about doing this?

I have several novels that were published in the 90’s and have since gone out of print. I had back the rights reverted back to me decided that I could turn them into ebooks, and in the process I'd learn how to do it for other authors whose situations are similar to mine. At first I was using a traditional flatbed scanner, scanning page by page. It was a long and tedious process, and I had to tear apart or cut the books. I couldn’t figure out any other way to do it.

How did you discover 1DollarScan?

Eventually I got smart and Googled for a service that would do it. I heard “1dollarscan” and was thinking “Really? “ Once I started using those services, the whole process became simpler and faster and easier for everyone.

I got students to help me scan and format with two of the books and when I came to publish my own work, Foreverland Press was born. It felt lonely with just my books in the catalogue, so I began to offer my services to friends who'd also had books published in the 80’s and 90’s These were great writers whose work had been well-received, but their books had gone out of print and I wanted to help them too.

How many authors have you helped with Foreverland Press?

We have 10 authors now and 15 books in our catalogue, but this was all only formed in the last year and we will at least double our output this year.

Five of the novels are by me and one is by Kathryn Dow, my alias. Hers is a "Foreverland First," our only one so far that is new and not a reprint. But our main mission is "Bringing Back the Backlist." The idea is that there are so many wonderful writers who are now out of print, yet when they were in print they were nominated for and won awards and made the New York Times bestseller list and all that, but the publishing and bookselling industry overall has been changing and these authors and their books are being left behind. The work is so good, but it's out of print and not digitally published, and so in danger of being lost for good.

The publishing industry can sometimes bring great despair. You can have good reviews, be well received, but now it’s more difficult than ever to even get an agent. Many writers like me haven’t changed, it’s the market that has changed. The rejection can be disheartening, and many writers just give up, which is a shame.
The good news is that all of our writers that have gone on to do great things, publishing new work again. Foreverland Press started with my own books and helping friends, but it’s grown and I have met with a lot of great writers and everyone's excited about the possibilities now.

And while you do all of this you have still been teaching and writing?

Foreverland is a hobby, but it’s a huge project. We are planning for writing conferences and a residency for artists to work together on collaborative projects. We’ve invited writers to participate by becoming a part of The Foreverland Project. For example, a friend who is a great songwriter has collaborated in a song titled “Foreverland” about a girl and these goblins and the stories that are a part of the Foreverland world. Foreverland Press is only part of the larger universe that is Foreverland.

Are you working on any more books yourself?

Of course, always. I have one finished novel called "The Deep Eddy" that is looking for a home, as well as a collection of short stories in progress, called "It's Not About the Dog," and Kathryn Dow is working on another book called "Bad," the first of a trilogy about a world in which everyone over the age of 27 has disappeared.

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