Parents in Business: Cassandra of Cahill Davis Publishing

Name of Business: Cahill Davis Publishing Limited

Your name and age: Cassandra Davis, 30

Tell us about your family: I’ve been married to my husband for almost 8 years and we live in west Berkshire (between Reading and Newbury) with our two daughters, aged 7 and 1. We live in a semi rural area with terrible broadband and almost no 4G signal.

What did you do before coming up with your business idea and how was it making the transition? I’ve been running a commercial advice business with my parents for the last 10 years and my background is in contractual change management! But writing and self publishing my first book in 2012 is where my interest in the publishing world started.

When did you launch? 2nd October 2020

How did you get started? After publishing my first book I realised there was a lot more to publishing a book than just writing it! I had to learn a lot about everything from cover design to marketing and PR. Since 2012 I’ve learned a lot about marketing books and getting sales but during lockdown, making a schedule with my eldest daughter for each day made a huge difference.  Making sure we had time for school work but also for fun every day, with a baby in tow, also gave me time for myself. I used that time to get back into writing another book, which I released on 24th August 2020. Once I’d written it I focussed on everything else that comes with selling a book again and that’s when I thought about starting my own publishing company. I know there are so many great authors out there who aren’t anywhere near as good at marketing as they are at writing.

What research did you do before launching? I looked into how to set up a publishing house for a long while before taking the plunge. I have a friend who worked in publishing before the birth of her son and another friend who has also set up her own publishing house. With their help and my business background, I knew I had what I needed to start. I spoke to the author connections I’ve made online and in person since I published my first book and there was a big consensus that they just wanted to write! Selling a book is a job all by itself and needs a completely different set of skills.

How have you funded the business? Setting up a digital first publishing house is a fairly lean start up so I was able to fund it myself.

How do you promote your business? What has worked best? So far I’ve been able to get some great local PR in the local paper and on BBC Radio Berkshire. Social media has also been a great way to get the word out and that’s how I got the first few manuscript submissions.

How do you fit in work with the family? So far I’ve been able to run the business during nap time and in the evenings. My eldest is at school and the baby has a 2 hour nap in the middle of the day, so I can get a lot done in that block. I’m grateful that my kids are both good sleepers! As the business grows I’ll be able to take on staff but we should all be able to work from home, so I can keep the flexibility around my family.

Have you got an exit strategy? It’s not something I’ve really thought about, there’s always the possibility of being bought out by one of the bigger publishing houses but who knows what the future holds.

Find out more about Cahill Davis Publishing: www.cahilldavispublishing.co.uk

Cahill Davis Publishing is currently looking for full-length commercial fiction in English and is happy to receive submissions from authors from all backgrounds and without agents. Submission guidelines and how to submit your manuscript can be found at https://www.cahilldavispublishing.co.uk/submissions  

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