Interview with Cypress Cove Publishing

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in south Louisiana in a little town called Opelousas, the third oldest town in the state, founded in 1720. This is in the heart of “Cajun Country.” I grew up listening to Cajun music, hearing Cajun French spoken by my parents and relatives, and eating Cajun food. The culture was ingrained in me from birth. So when the time came to produce “Down-Home Cajun Cooking Favorites,” I knew what the favorites were, so that project came together smoothly.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I wrote a monster story in sixth grade and the teacher liked it so she gave me an “A.”
How did you get into writing and self-publishing?
My whole life has been a journey up a series of stepping stones. In the 70s I obtained the rights to a report titled “How to Run Faster.” It was written by an Olympic athlete. I sold it through mail order ads. I got hooked on marketing when my mailbox got flooded with money.
I wrote a Biblical-based book in 1980, had it printed and sold that through ads.
I wrote a book on how to get hired by the U.S. Post Office and sold 3000 copies.
In the 90s I created a nutrition product catalog and sold 140,000 copies to nutrition distributors, and then I wrote a 16-page sales letter and sold 120,000 copies at $1 each.
I worked for a local publisher for 11 years helping him produce books and magazines. This was on-the-job training to accomplish my future plans.
I self-published my three cookbooks in paperback and sell them wholesale locally, as well as on Smashwords.
I see. So you are a publisher also. Do you help others get published?
Yes, I have had my own publishing company, Cypress Cove Publishing, since 2001. I self-published my own books from the start. I have helped a few others get their book into the market, such as "A House for Eliza: The Real Story of the Cajuns" and "Cajun Country Fun Coloring & Activity Book."
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
The Smashwords distribution platform provides a continual stream of passive residual income, which I am all about. Do the work once, then cover as many bases as possible, get the System working for you, and make a continual income.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I do cooking demonstrations and book signings locally. Without fail, someone will come up to the table to find out what is going on and say, “Oh, I have this cookbook! I love it!” It is a great joy to hear their comments about how their lifestyle has been improved by cooking easy one-pot meals using my cookbooks.
What are you working on next?
“Dad’s War Photos: Adventures in the South Pacific.”
My father took 800 pictures in WWII while in Australia, New Guinea, Biak and the Philippines. Using his photos, captions and the battalion’s Daily Military Record, I was able to trace his steps from boot camp to war and back home.
This huge work will be split into a set of five ebooks, as well as paperback, hardcover and DVD formats.
What do you like to read and who are your favorite authors?
In high school I read “The Lord of the Rings” twice, so J.R.R. Tolkien is my favorite fiction author.
I read mostly non-fiction books on book marketing, internet marketing and the business of publishing. Some of my favorite authors in the publishing genre are Dan Poynter, John Kremer and Shelley Hitz.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Constant change is here to stay. There is no end to the learning curves facing me, so I am always learning different things, such as how to launch a book properly, plus the challenges I find in learning and using social media. The list goes on and on.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I always search the internet for topics that interest me.
How do you approach cover design?
Oh, good question! I approach the cover from a practical standpoint. The front cover has to act like a magnet to attract you to it. The photo or artwork has to be appealing, the type font readable and large enough to be easily read as a thumbnail image. The sales copy you provide has to sell them and answer the prospect’s questions they are asking as they look at your cover: “What’s in it for me? Why should I buy this?”
What do you do to relax?
I heard this funny quote years ago which I like: “Sometimes I sits and thinks, and sometimes I just sits.” I relax in my recliner, and occasionally watch a good TV show or movie. I enjoy researching my family tree, having found ancestors going back 10 generations.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I don’t have a new-fangled e-reading device. I only use my laptop PC. That is sufficient for now.
Do you have a web site?
Yes, I have a few. My main website is Clicking on the book cover images will bring you to a descriptive sales page, usually with a video. I am also on Facebook and have a Youtube channel named “cookbookdude.”
Published 2013-08-30.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Creative Writing Competition Winners 2012-2014 - An Anthology from the Writers’ Guild of Acadiana in Lafayette, Louisiana
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 18,060. Language: American English. Published: October 17, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - multi-author, Nonfiction » Antiques & Collectibles
Murder mystery, poetry, science fiction, love stories, such as: >I knocked on his door and walked in. To my surprise, Richard’s creamy behind was doing the mamba with an unknown female. >If I am dead, how am I telling this story? Well, it’s complicated. What we did was wrong, but it was the only way. >As I looked at him in the casket, I realized this was the second time I had seen him killed.