publisher Mark Kolke, in conversation with Lyn Cadence
The role and stage of a project where she becomes involved varies widely – but she says, “People call me because they don’t know what to do – some need a coach, some need help with everything.”
When I met with Lyn Cadence at her Elbow Park home to deal with this piece the streets were still dotted with way too many dumpsters of flood debris, she’d just got in, out of breath … and a client was calling her in a panic … so she sprang into action to solve a website problem. That quickly dispatched, she heaved a sigh and sat still for a little while to answer questions. Such is the frenetic pace of a busy public relations/publishing pro who describes her role as consultant, publicist, agent and researcher . . .
In the beginning … Manitoba, Alberta, BC, Toronto – and back, the stories of early days criss-crossed the country for a James Fowler High School grad who entered Mount Royal College, transferred to U of C and emerged from Simon Fraser University from which she launched into a lengthy career (24 years and counting . . . ) in publishing with a BA – English Literature major with a minor in Communications and Publishing which seems well removed from her initial foray into social work that didn’t take.
Her credentials include lengthy stints at Raincoast, Key-Porter Books, Fifth House, Volunteer Collective, Press Gang and a few other diversions. She’s not kept a tally but she estimates she’s had a hand in the publishing and/or promotion of more than 900 books. What’s next? “Your book is your business. Each book is its own different product. It is about taking risks. People publish books because they are passionate about it. And, most publishers take more chances and publish more than they can handle . . . “
What’s next? “I’ll be launching a new thing – a service for small businesses - coaching PR, helping people self-audit themselves and their needs 'What’s your story? Who cares?' analysis - and many more important questions . . . “
I asked Lyn how she sees the marketplace for publishing over the next 90 day?
… more and more books published by more and more writers published in more and more formats and read on more and more devices.
Over the next 5 years?
… I don’t know. I would be suspect of anyone who said they were dead certain. Lots of action in real books and e-books. In some categories, readers are gravitating back to books. Most popular categories will continue to be sci-fi, romance, mystery, thrillers – the mass market paperback reader continuing to go strongly to e-books. Better books will be read on phones, e-reader and good old paper. The free PDF/e-book will grow, often as a sweetener – something from the back list for free as part of a new purchase.
What qualities distinguish your preferred colleagues, collaborators and suppliers?
… they can do the job. Effective. They show up. Loyalty. Kindness, generosity. They are nice people. Price? …. but of course!
What distinguishes you that causes people choose Lyn to do business with – why are you selected over your competitors?
… mix of lots of experience, I know the business, I’m enthusiastically embracing new technology – pretty adept at those.
What do you lose sleep over, what do you worry about?
… I don’t pace the floor at 3AM
Who or what influenced you most – that has made a difference in your life, or that was a major turning point?
… pivotal event, while in Vancouver, applying for a student job at the Canadian Centre for Studies in Publishing that showed me THAT I WAS right in taking a leap of faith on a career in publishing. Lorimer Rowland, prof at SimonFraserUniversity. Starting my own business. I figured, if I’m going to be working that hard for other people, why not do if for myself instead? Taking control in an uncertain time. The impact of an wrote an article I wrote, “The truth as we know it about violence against women” in 1981.
Who is your hero – real or mythical – who inspires you?
. . . Emma Peel ….. Emma Goldman who said “If I can’t dance, I don’t want to be part of our revolution!”
Work life balance?
… cooking, cycling, dancing, walking, photography – and this year, add a wedding and a honeymoon, and the flood was its own category!
What are you reading?
… I spend a lot of time, both work and play, on lots of social media, Canadian lit. from various cultural perspectives, The Orenda by Joseph Boyden
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