Barbara Barth Launches her tour for A Dog Dreams of Paris: From Rescue Dog to Diva

Monday, June 29, 2015
& giveaway contest!

Like all people who share their lives with dogs, sometimes I wonder what they’re thinking about. Author Barbara Barth who shares her life with many dogs must have wondered also. And what she came up with turned into a simply charming book – A Dog Dreams of Paris: From Rescue Dog to Diva.

It all began when Barbara adopted April, a rescue dog who had a little trouble settling into a household that included five other dogs. She had trouble finding her place in the pack and preferred to sit quietly watching the other dogs and thinking about…what? April’s personality finally began to peek through during an Easter photo shoot for Barbara’s blog. She wore a vintage pink hat, complete with a large silk rose and was transformed from shy April to Miss April in Paris, a stylish canine. For a few months Miss April had her own blog, where she dreamed of visiting the City of Lights. That blog was the seed that blossomed into A Dog Dreams of Paris, a travel diary told from Miss April’s point of view during an imaginary trip to Paris. If, like Miss April, you dream of Paris don’t miss this unusual view.

Paperback: 52 pages
Publisher: Gilbert Street Press (May 5, 2015)
ISBN-10: 0983171556
ISBN-13: 978-0983171553

This book is available as a print book at Amazon as well as at your local independent bookstore.

Book Giveaway Contest:

To win a copy of A Dog Dreams of Paris: From Rescue Dog to Diva, please enter using the Rafflecopter form at the bottom of this post. The giveaway contest closes this Friday, July 3 at 12:00 AM EST. We will announce the winner the same day in the Rafflecopter widget. Good luck!

About the Author:

Barbara Barth likes a lot of things: turquoise jewelry, surfing the 'net, and margaritas, to name a few. Then there are the dogs. As many as her house can hold! After her husband died she recorded the year that followed in a series of essays that became her memoir The Unfaithful Widow. She has also written a romance-suspense Danger in Her Words and edited the anthology A Cup of Christmas. When she isn't writing you can find her at the local thrift shops or pounding another nail into the wall to hang the paintings she can't resist. She published a romance novel Danger in her Words before one of her dogs, Miss April in Paris, insisted it was HER turn to write a memoir. Miss April in Paris now refers to Barbara as "my secretary."

Find out more about the author by visiting her online:
Twitter: @writerwithdogs

----- Interview by Jodi Webb

WOW: Barbara, you're a favorite here at WOW. You've visited us with four different books--all in different genres--so it was no surprise to us that an author as prolific as you would take the step many writers are taking by starting your own publishing company. And we want to know all about it! First things first, what made you decide to start your own company?

Sometimes you learn by trial and error. In 2010, when I completed my memoir, The Unfaithful Widow, I used a vanity publisher. I had no idea what that term meant back then. I paid the company to design my book and they did a fine job of it. I thought that was self-publishing. I was thrilled to see my story in print. They followed my instructions for the interior of the book and designed the PDF exactly as I instructed. I paid the company extra for the privilege of using my own cover and had a friend design the cover PDF and submitted it to them. I used their ISBN.

As I learned more about publishing books, I wanted my memoir to be under my own ISBN and that is when my learning curve started. In order to do so with this company, I had to repurchase the program (expensive) and pay to have the changes made to use my own ISBN and then buy the PDF from them. I owned my story. They designed the book’s interior and they owned the PDF. It was a locked file that I could do nothing with. I did own my book cover PDF since they did not do that design work. The royalties from print on demand book sales were less than a dollar a book, and I got paid months after any sales. Plus, my wholesale price to buy books was expensive. They also designed the Kindle version, which I later realized had formatting errors. Luckily once they uploaded to Kindle, they were out of the loop with my e-book.

Needless to say, I discovered the error of my ways. I did not want to go this route again. I took a class, actually had the interior of my widow memoir reformatted, and was planning on closing out my account with the original publisher. Then The Unfaithful Widow placed as a finalist in the 2011 USA Best Book Awards and I decided to leave well enough alone. I would do something different with my next book. And Gilbert Street Press came out of that experience. My company is named after the street where I bought my first house. The logo is a tree with two dogs underneath it. Appropriate for me, with my crazy six-pack of dogs at home.

WOW: There are writers and there are business people. But as the owner of a publishing company you have to be both. Do you have business experience? How did you learn about the business details of publishing?

Barbara: I am still learning, although now I think I have a handle on things. CreateSpace with Amazon has made self-publishing so easy. While they offer free ISBN’s, if you use theirs, the book product description on Amazon will show CreateSpace as the publisher. I buy my own ISBN’s and bar codes from Bowker which makes Gilbert Street Press the publisher of record. I am more a creative person than a business person, but I love working with marketing. And I have the best book designer in the universe who takes my ideas and makes them a reality. My time is spent doing what I know and love – writing and marketing.

WOW: Are you a one woman shop or do you have employees? Do you hire out some portions to freelancers such as book cover design, etc.?

Barbara: My book designer is my sister. She is a one woman show with her company PD King Design. As a photographer her work has appeared on magazine covers and while living in the US Virgin Islands, she designed brochures for many businesses. Now in Florida, designing books and book covers seemed a natural turn of events. She is my go-to person with my books, but she also works with other authors. Pam has the experience and skills to create books and eBooks that reflect the author’s vision. A Dog Dreams of Paris is visually stunning because of her talent and patience. I thought white background and she saw Technicolor. We brainstormed the book over the phone and she met my unreasonable deadline. We had six weeks to pull it all together. I wanted April’s story on Amazon before I went in for hip replacement surgery.

WOW: What was the biggest surprise (good or bad) when you started Gilbert Street Press?

Barbara: It has all been good. I am fortunate to have my sister who does the technical side of designing and uploading the files to CreateSpace. I love that I am the publisher of record. I like the control of knowing my vision has been met with all aspects of my book. Right now I am just publishing my own work, which is uncomplicated. If I decide to open Gilbert Street Press to other authors, that will be a slightly different story.

WOW: What do you feel are the advantages of having your own publishing company? Any tips for writers thinking of starting their own publishing company?

Barbara: I am a very hands on person. My books are a total art project for me. And right or wrong, I am head strong and have a vision that I don’t want changed. Self-publishing gives me the control I like. It’s fun, it’s work, but in the end I have a product I am thrilled with. And if I am lucky, others will enjoy what I’ve produced. The best advice I could give anyone who wants to start their own publishing company is to do it with your heart and soul. Be sure your work is clean, edited, and can hold its own professionally with other self-publishers, for yourself, and more so if you take on a client.

WOW: Have you run into any bias against A Dog Dreams of Paris because you own the company that published it?

Barbara: Ahhh, that brings on the debate about self-publishing. The publishing industry is changing and self-publishing is a respected way to go now. Much different than when I wrote my memoir. I think the beauty of A Dog Dreams of Paris will be what stands out when you look at my book and I have my sister’s incredible work to thank for that.

WOW: Will Gilbert Street Press be strictly for your work or do you anticipate publishing other writer's work at some point?

Barbara: That is up for debate. I still have quite a few of my own ideas to produce!

WOW: What's next for you and Gilbert Street Press?

Barbara: My dog memoir. It is the book I’ve had on the back burner for several years. I’ve been writing snippets of it and posting on various blogs. I want to pull in all my essays and turn them into a fun book on living with six dogs. Whimsical, with photographs and my own illustrations. I hope to complete it this year.

WOW: What a coincidence, I'm reading another books about pets that will be touring with WOW in July: David Berner's There's a Hamster in the Dashboard. I can't wait to read yours! But I'm especially looking forward to the photos of your pack.

Barbara's pack! Bertha Barth, Miss April in Paris, Bray-boy, Annabelle, Rascal, and Chloe in her pink sweater.

----------Blog Tour Dates

Monday, June 29(today!) @ The Muffin
Stop by for an interview with Barbara Barth and a chance to win A Dog Dreams of Paris: From Rescue Dog to Diva!

Tuesday, June 30 @ Bring on Lemons
Wondering what young readers have to say about A Dog Dreams of Paris? Stop by Bring on Lemons today to find out from our 8 year old reviewer!

Wednesday, July 1 @ Lisa Haselton’s Reviews and Interviews
Learn more about author Barbara Barth and her latest book, the tale of a trip to Paris told through an unusual viewpoint.

Friday, July 3 @ Deal Sharing Aunt
Check out a review of Barbara Barth's quirky book for dog/Paris/travel lovers: A Dog Dreams of Paris.

Monday, July 6 @ Frog on a Blog
Want to support your favorite charity? Why not write a book! Author Barbara Barth explains how writing and charity can go hand in hand.

Wednesday, July 8 @ Building Bookshelves
Where do dogs dream of going on vacation? Apparently, Paris! Don't miss a review of A Dog Dreams of Paris.

Thursday, July 9 @ Words by Webb
Who is your favorite canine literary character? Barbara Barth answers this and other quirky questions in a 5W interview.

Friday, July 10 @ Oh My Dog!
Don't miss your chance to win A Dog Dreams of Paris and learn more about author Barbara Barth in today's interview.

Tuesday, July 14 @ Writer with Dogs
Celebrate Bastille Day with Miss April of A Dog Dreams of Paris. Miss April will be giving us the lowdown on how Parisian dogs celebrate Bastille Day.

Wednesday, July 15 @ Hott Books
Are your kids looking for a fun read? Check out a review of A Dog Dreams of Paris and add it to the summer reading list.

Thursday, July 16 @ Margo Dill
Barbara Barth, the author of A Dog Dreams of Paris, writes about...guess what...dogs!

Friday, July 17 @ Renee's Pages
Stop by and find out what Renee has to say about Barbara Barth's A Dog Dreams of Paris.

Friday, July 24 @ MC Simon Writes
Stop by to find out what MC Simon writes about A Dog Dreams of Paris by Barbara Barth.

To view all our touring authors, check out our Events Calendar. Keep up with blog stops and giveaways in real time by following us on Twitter @WOWBlogTour.

Get Involved!
If you have a website or blog and would like to host one of our touring authors or schedule a tour of your own, please email us at

*****Book Giveaway Contest*****

Enter to win a copy of A Dog Dreams of Paris: From Rescue Dog to Diva! Just fill out the Rafflecopter form below. We will announce the winner in the Rafflecopter widget this Friday, July 3.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!


Sioux Roslawski said...

Jodi--Thanks for interviewing Barbara.

Barbara--It was such a brilliant thing to do--begin your own publishing company so you can be in control. (That's why I had home births for both kids... but that was--literally speaking--a bit more of a messy story.)

Did you know that Chicken Soup for the Soul is looking for "My Very Good, Very Bad Dog" stories? The deadline is August 31. If you got a story accepted, it would be another way to market this book (actually, all your books) because you could list them in your bio.

Just a suggestion... Go to (then "Read" then "Submit Story" then "Possbile Book Topics") if you're interested and if you haven't already submitted a story to them.

Barbara Barth said...

Sioux, thanks for the info. I will do that. My life is all about dog stories! The only 'births' I've had are my dogs. Always thought there would be lots of children and there are . . . my fur babies! Heading to check the guidelines now!

Angela Mackintosh said...

Thanks for the interview, ladies! Barbara, it's great you started your own publishing company and your logo is fantastic. Thanks for sharing some tips about the process. I love the idea of A Dog Dreams of Paris and have put some thought into publishing my own photo collage and graphic novel. How much more expensive is it to produce a full color book? And which printer did you go with?

Thanks in advance for any tips you can share! And good luck on your tour. It looks like it's going to be a blast. :)

Margo Dill said...

I am very excited to be a part of this blog tour .And my 4-year-old is very excited about this book. She LOVES, absolutely LOVES, dogs. :)

Barbara Barth said...

Angela - Stick with me while I give you some comparison figures. The paper book is print on demand with CreateSpace. There is no charge to upload files to CreateSpace. My wholesale cost for the 55 page paper book is $4.49 per copy as compared to the paper copy of my novel Danger In Her Words, at 260 pages, which is $3.77. I priced A Dog Dreams of Paris to be competitive with children's books and gift books, at $10.95 for the paperback copies. My royalty per book on Amazon is $2.08. If I had chosen a higher list price, that figure would be more. If I buy books and sell them myself, my profit is much higher, which allows more that can go to my dog rescue groups if I do book signings, etc. At the moment the book is not available in retail outlets. This will be paper only, as the beauty of it would be lost in an e-book. My other books are available both in paper and e-books, but online only the e-book sells with those. At $2.99 per e-book, I get 70% royalty, so it is about the same money in royalties. I rarely sell my other books in any other format. The trick to producing a book like A Dog Dreams of Paris is to find the right book designer who understands your vision and can make it happen.

Barbara Barth said...

Margo, so happy to stop on your blog on my tour, too. I think your 4-year-old might love April making new friends in Paris the all dogs make friends, butt sniffing! Let me know.

Angela Mackintosh said...

Thanks so much for sharing, Barbara! That's not a bad wholesale price at all. And great idea of buying them yourself and selling them signings and dog events. I think holding the book in your hands and seeing the beautiful artwork would be a big seller. Your sister did a great job! I may have to consult with her on my project. :) I'm an artist and graphic designer and have done some of my own small print run comics, book covers for authors, and catalogues etc for businesses, but I've never interior designed a full-length graphic novel project.

I hope you do a series of these books! And I can't wait for your dog memoir. :)

Jodi Webb said...


We would love to hear what your 4 year old thinks of A Dog Dreams of Paris. You could be her "secretary". Tomorrow we're having a review by an 8 year old -- it's fun to have a younger viewpoint!

MissLiDe said...

Your book sounds intriguing! Thanks for the tip on buying your own ISBN. Were there any other hoops you had to go through to have your own publishing company? Is it considered a sole proprietorship? (The bookkeeper in me is coming out.)

Barbara Barth said...

MissLiDe - CreateSpace makes it easy. They also send out a 1099 for sales. Unless I make a profit it is set up temporarily as a hobby business with my claiming expenses up to my sales, so it is a wash. My expenses have been much higher, but I now fall under whatever that ruling is about only claiming a loss for so many years. I leave taxes up to my accountant. I plan to step things up in the next year or so, and we'll see how that works out!

Curso de Dog Walker said...

Love this. Thanks for sharing, Barbara!

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