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Stamford Native Shares Publishing Insights

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Books may not be the first thing you think of when you hear the word ‘festival’, but at the 16th Annual West Texas Book Festival, they’re the main focus. Authors, publishers and readers have gathered in Abilene this week to highlight the importance of reading and literacy in the community.

Callie Metler-Smith is the owner and editor of Clearfork Publishing in Stamford. Her love for reading and writing as well as her expertise, has brought her to this year’s West Texas Book Festival. The festival showcases local authors and provides a chance for writers, editors and publishers to share ideas. She will be part of a panel discussion on what publishers look for in perspective books and authors.

“From my standpoint, I own a newspaper and I own a bookstore and I own a publishing company and I write, so I kind of have a 360 view of everything that goes into a book and what people are looking for,” Smith said. “So it’s really, really fun to interact and find out what they think is important to book publishers.”

Smith, a native of Stamford, Texas, recently published her own book called “Swensons, Pinick, and the TCR”. The books covers the history of her hometown and the figures who helped create it. Being a writer as well as publisher, she knows exactly what elements to include in her books. This also helps her to lead other authors in the right direction.

It’s all about what the publisher is looking for and I think that it’s also important for writers to understand that they have an important voice to tell,” Smith said. “Just because they’re rejected for something doesn’t mean that there’s not going to be someone down the line that believes in their project, and it doesn’t mean the person rejecting them doesn’t believe in their project.”