In short, I formed my own publishing company Blue Morpho Publishing. I shifted my focus from seeing my novel as a manuscript to seeing it as a product to design and release to the market. This was an easy transition for me, because I've always been an entrepreneur by heart. I studied business in high school and college. I was already operating my own successful business as a freelance film/video editor. I was so excited to be taking over the destiny of my book, that I jumped right in. I got some financial backing. I hired an editor, Karl Monger, to give my manuscript a professional polish. I was determined to have a cover that I was not only proud of, but it had to compete for attention of millions of other books out on the market. The cover is where I focused most of my budget. I hired Kathy Dunn to design the cover and Les Edwards to illustrate it. Here's the evolution from sketch to finished cover.
Brian@BrianMoreland.com for a free copy of my ebook PUBLISHING FROM MANUSCRIPT TO BOOKSHELF.
Most traditional publishers take anywhere from eighteen months to two years to release a book, from the day I decided to self-publishing, nine months later I was holding a bound copy in my hands. I'll never forget the feeling. Finally, after eighteen years, I had a bound novel with cover art and even a bar code on the back. It was ready to go to market. I originally released SHADOWS IN THE MIST in September, 2006. By October, it was on display at Barnes and Noble where I did two book signings. The goal-setting exercise I did paid off.
During its first year of publication, Shadows in the Mist received some great reviews.
"Equal parts horror story and spine-jangling thriller. An adventure not to be missed!"—James Rollins, New York Times bestselling author of Map of Bones and Black Order
"Fast paced and tension ratcheting, Brian Moreland's SHADOWS IN THE MIST is a page-turner sure to satisfy even the most fickle thriller junkie! This one definitely won't be collecting dust on your nightstand!"
—Deborah LeBlanc, Author of Morbid Curiosity and A House Divided
“Shadows in the Mist is chilling horrorfest, written by a bright new talent in the horror genre. But more than that, this novel is a terrific page-turner that combines the best aspects of mystery, dark suspense, and the historical thriller. Well written. Well researched. And a gripping, haunting read from the opening pages in a creepy Nazi-occupied castle to the grand guignol of the last pages."
—Gary Braver, Bestselling Author of Flashback and Skin Deep
"Shadows in the Mist is one of the best books that I've read this year."
—Horror Bob, HorrorReview.com
“Stephen Ambrose's Band of Brothers meets Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code meets F. Paul Wilson's The Keep. With Shadows in the Mist, Brian Moreland weaves together the best elements of military, supernatural and religious conspiracy genres, staking out a new territory all his own.”
—T.L. Hines, author of Waking LazarusSelf-publishing offered me the chance to do several book signings and a radio show and meet some incredible people along the way.