On today’s episode of the Craft Industry Alliance podcast, we’re talking about publishing craft books with my guests, Sara Bercholz and Jennifer Urban-Brown of Roost Books, an imprint of Shambhala.
Sara is the Executive Vice President of Shambhala and the publisher of Roost Books. She started Roost Books with Jenn in 2012. Shambhala was started by her father, Sam Bercholz, in the 1960s and the company remains in the family
And Jennifer Urban-Brown is an avid knitter, a B+ sewer, and a dabbling baker. She has been an editor at Roost Books / Shambhala Publications since 2006, where she has the great privilege of working on books that truly inspire her and that reflect the things she cherishes most in life: creativity and community.
We begin the conversation by talking about Roost Books in particular, defining exactly what makes a book a Roost Book and how Roost fits within the overarching ideals of Shambhala. We discuss Roost’s roots as a publisher of bloggers, including Amanda Blake Soule’s first book, The Creative Family, and how the success of that book helped propel the beginning of Roost.
A selection of Roost Books craft titles.
Sara’s father, Sam Bercholz, founded Shambhala in the 1960s in California. She traces the roots of the company and how it became what it is today. We talk about some of the key topics Shambhala is known for – Buddhism, martial arts, yoga, and alternative medicine – and how they’ve gone from being radical, or counter-cultural, ideas to being mainstream and even commercial.
I ask Sara and Jenn to explain how to go about preparing and submitting a book proposal to Roost Books and what exactly they’re looking for. They explain what an author can expect when doing a book with Roost.
And, of course, I ask Sara and Jenn to recommend great stuff they’re loving right now. Sara recommends horticulture skincare and Jenn recommends Jennifer Hewett’s online printmaking class Design Carve Print (and look for Jennifer Hewett’s book with Roost coming in 2018).
To keep up with Roost check out their website, and follow along on Instagram and Facebook.
This episode is sponsored by Unanimous Craft. Unanimous Craft is a website where you can find places to sell your handmade and small batch work. This online index of brick and mortar shops, online selling venues and craft shows around the country is comprehensive, up to date, and easy to use. Visit unanimouscraft.com/naps for a special offer just for While She Naps listeners.
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Abby, this was one of my favorite episodes! Lots of great info, and Roost sounds like such a wonderful publishing option for those who are fortunate enough to work with them.
That’s great to hear. Thank you Sarah. And I agree Roost is a special place.
I am a designer and therefore a HUGE fan of Roost Books. Eery cover has made me open up the book and dive in and I’ve not been disappointed yet. They are all beautiful. Please check out my own book where I have lots of crafts and activities for kids. Horse Play! Encouraging kid’s passions. https://www.amazon.com/Horse-Play-Crafts-Activities-Horse-Crazy/dp/1612127592