This semester, Abigail Hoeft got an idea of what it’s like to publish a book.
The Weyauwega-Fremont High School graduate is a senior at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point where she is majoring in English.
During an upper-level English class called “Editing and Publishing,” Hoeft was one of about 25 students involved in publishing two books.
“It’s been really exciting. It’s probably been the most unique experience of my academic career,” she said.
She was an associate editor of the two books that were published this month by UW-Stevens Point’s Cornerstone Press – a small publishing house run by students enrolled in the college’s editing and publishing course.
Cornerstone has published 28 books since it began in 1984.
The two latest books to be published are Jake the Grizz and the World’s Fastest Snowboard by Kit Kiefer and Fugitive from Spanish Fascism: A Memoir by Miguel Dominquez Soler translated by Richard Barker.
The class published the books under the direction of Per Henningsgaard and with the support of Worzalla Publishing Company of Stevens Point.
When the semester began, students in the class self-nominated themselves for various positions, including administrative, editorial, marketing, sales and design positions.
Last June, there was a call for manuscripts, and the class collaborated to decide which manuscript or manuscripts it wanted to publish into books.
“We had fun as a class deciding what we would be able to market,” Hoeft said. “We had to think about the marketability and if we would we want to read these books.”
She enjoyed working on both of the manuscripts that were ultimately chosen, describing Kiefer’s young adult novel as lighthearted, and Barker’s translation as compelling and gritty.
As an associate editor, Hoeft’s role was to make sure that the manuscript remained consistent with the message the authors were trying to get across and true to their vision.
“I know a lot of the class will work next semester on getting the books out to the public. We have plans for a book release party with readings as well,” she said.
Hoeft sees the class as a great opportunity for anyone interested in writing and said students can actually submit their own manuscripts.
She likes the fact that a local university is involved in publishing books and said it was great to work with a more personal publishing house.
“I think it’s a really great stepping stone for anyone who wants to get into writing or editing or publishing their own writing,” said Hoeft, who would like to work as a writer or editor after she graduates from UW-Stevens Point.
“I love to write, and I love to read,” she said. “I originally thought about teaching but writing is really my passion.”
For more information about Cornerstone Press, email firstname.lastname@example.org.