This may be unorthodox — the co-owner of a publishing company hijacking their own company’s blog for a reflection post. But it’s been a year since Sword and Silk opened its doors. A year since we put ourselves out there and asked, “Will you join us?”
At first it was just five.
My magnificent five. Five women I’ve come to love, respect, and learn from even more this year.
There is no one I trust more with words than Jennia. No one who has better taste in books than Nicole. No one who can keep people entertained week after week like Kristin. No one who loves and gives more to the community than Jenna. No one who translates authors' words into visuals than Lucy.
They signed up for this magical mystery ride without us having to beg (although we would have. No shame) and I couldn’t be more proud or more happy with our staff.
But then it was another 100.
A hundred people saw us on Kickstarter, during the middle of a global pandemic when everyone wasn’t sure there would be much of an economy to turn to in the coming days, and decided they liked what they saw enough to put cold, hard cash into it.
Then it was two authors. Justine and Haleigh (and then more and more as our list has grown!). They came in with bells on. Ready to join our journey. Ready to trust us with their book babies.
And then slowly it was Twitter followers, Instagram followers, street team members, newsletter subscribers, blog readers (hey hey I see y’all!), and quiet onlookers.
It was people saying “I don’t have a book yet but I love you guys” and “Your social media team is awesome”. It was likes and comments and the quiet support that doesn’t often get recognized but means so incredibly much to small businesses like ours.
It was walking (virtually. I mean we are talking 2020/2021 here) into a room and people I don’t know already knowing who we are.
Don’t get me wrong. It hasn’t all been sugar plums and gumdrops. We pride ourselves on our transparency and this post will be no different.
There’s been a lot of hard work, sleepless nights, and praying like hell we’re doing everything right.
There hasn’t been a moment in over 365 days where I wasn’t thinking about Sword and Silk. But those feelings aren’t because I don’t believe in us or because there is anything wrong. It’s because I love our company, our mission, our staff, our authors, and our readers so much.
Seriously, there are moments when my love for everything Sword and Silk embodies makes my chest feel so full I think it might pop.
At any given moment I have approximately 20 things on my to-do list. And I love it. Because I know I’m making a difference. I know we’re making a difference.
I used to say that when I grew up I wanted to work at a company that changed peoples lives. But now I co-own one. I get to wake up every morning and change an author or a reader's life for the better.
It’s so much bigger than me in the best way possible.
I’d say I don’t know how I was blessed with such an amazing thing, but I do.
Years ago some random woman with sunglasses showed up in my Twitter DMs and asked to be friends.
And if you know me or MB you’ve heard this story (it’s an adorable meet-cute). But it was the closest thing to magic I’ve ever experienced. Suddenly my world was bigger. My life was fuller. I was surrounded by a group of amazing, supportive authors.
MB and her friends changed my life. They made all of this possible by not only believing in me, but believing in the two of us when we said “you guys want to hear the crazy idea we just had”.
In so many ways, we owe everything we’ve accomplished in the past year to everyone who has believed in us (even other publishing companies and organizations like the CLMP and IBPA). I think I finally understand how Tinkerbell must have felt coming back to life when Wendy chanted “I believe in fairies”.
So this is less of a reflection post and more of a thank you note. Thank you for believing in us. Thank you for allowing us to make dreams come true. Thank you for every like, comment, blog view, submission, book purchase, Kickstarter donation, newsletter subscription, and more.
I see you. Each and every one of you. I couldn’t be more grateful for your support.
And I hope we get to continue this wonderful journey with you for a very long time.