Dara Beevas remembers falling in love with books as a child when she read “Striped Ice Cream” by Joan M. Lexau. Amy Quale fell in love with literature in second grade when she was required to memorize a poem for school – Shel Silverstein’s “Eighteen Flavors,” which she can still recite on command today.
It’s not a coincidence that these two lovers of books would one day come together with what they consider a “delicious idea.”
“Amy, I have an idea,” Beevas said between bites of her gourmet flatbread on a fall day in 2011. At the time, Beevas and Quale were colleagues at a Twin Cities independent publisher, Beaver’s Pond Press. Beevas’ idea was to create a blog that would share their passion for literature with independent authors.
“We worked with indie authors every day, and they’re the most inspiring people in the world. It takes such guts and passion to be an indie author. And it’s also incredibly challenging,” Quale says.
“Because of our close relationship with authors in our day job, we know their challenges, fears and concerns. We wanted a broader platform to share what we had learned from our authors. Our blog, Wise Ink, launched in the beginning of 2012 to do just that,” says Beevas.
It wasn’t long before the success of their blog led Beevas and Quale to found Wise Ink Creative Publishing of Minneapolis. They admit taking the leap to start their own press was scary, but say they had many great role models.
“We were so inspired by our authors,” says Quale. “They are the true dream followers. Our dream is to help them achieve their dreams.”
Wise Ink has published everything from novels and memoirs to coffee table books and self-help books. No two books are alike, but every project Wise Ink takes on has a common theme.
“The first thing we ask authors is: What do you want your book to do in the world? We know if we can shape a book around an author’s goals and dreams, we will have something really special,” Quale says.
About 60 percent of their authors are women.
“Our being women is an asset for our vision,” says Beevas. “As women, we approach our business from a personal place. We honor our authors’ passions. We believe that publishing is one of the bravest things you can do, because what you write is almost literally an extension of yourself. It’s your words, what you think, what you create, and sharing it with the world in book form is a courageous thing.”
“Sharing words and ideas is the first step to igniting any change in the world,” Quale says. “So publishing is much more than a business – it’s a springboard for change.”
Wise Ink has helped more than 75 authors around the country since it began publishing in 2012. Among the best-selling books are:
You Are the Mother of All Mothers by Angela Miller
The Resiliency Evolution: Your Stress Solution for Life – 60 Seconds at a Time by Jenny C. Evans
Bloodmark and Bloodrealms of the Bloodmark Saga by Aurora Whittet