Writing can be so cathartic at times. Even if your words are never seen by another soul, the simple art of putting pen to paper…. hands to keys…. can release an emotional storm. So how cool would it be if you felt inspired to share your private thoughts with the WORLD? How AMAZING to have the opportunity to share, via a published author, and see your private and innermost thoughts showcased as a tool to help others?
Then how much harder would it be to see that same publisher, take advantage of the work you created? Sometimes in the ever-glamorous world of book publishing, these things do happen. Such is the story of Wesley Caldwell.
Wesley knew from a very young age he wanted to be a writer. He attended college with his major in English and a hard emphasis on writing to help further his skill-set. He started out writing short stories of the sci-fi/horror genre, but it was his FAITH and Belief in God that led him to his first published work. “In 2012 I felt God calling me to write my testimony and daily devotionals. It took four years to get my story into the words that would become my book Why I Believe”. That book was completed in early 2016 and Caldwell began the task of finding a publisher. Like many of the Tate family of authors, he did an internet search for a Christian Publisher. Then, as they say, the rest was history. In March of 2016, Wesley submitted his near complete manuscript to Tate Publishing and within just a few days Tate not only got back with him, but offered him a contract. The publishing process happened quickly and his book was available to purchase in August of that same year. He saw immediate sales of his book and felt sure he’d found success. Sadly, it was to be a short-lived launch into publication.
In December of 2016, just a few months after his book hit the shelves, some of Wesley’s friends began to express concern that they could no longer order his book. Then, in January of 2017, Caldwell discovered Tate was closing their company doors. Not one royalty check was ever paid out on to Wesley Caldwell. He immediately reached out to contact every person he could within the Tate Publishing organization, but all he got was canned responses about Tate’s “transition period”. He never received a personal communication from his Tate Representative beforehand, nor has he to this day.
A similar story, sadly, as so many other Tate authors. After getting zero response from Tate, Wesley Caldwell did the only other thing he knew to do. He filed a complaint with the Attorney General of Oklahoma. After that, Caldwell had a choice to make. Stop all his efforts and give up, or find a way to push forward. Passionate still about his focus, Wesley decided to go ahead and sign a release for Tate (offered on their website to all their authors) and pay a $50.00 fee to get his files released to him.
Despite the truly unfortunate turn of events,
Wesley remains more focused than ever. Not only republishing his book, but now reaching out to other Tate authors in the hopes of helping them.
“My goal now is to press on and to help others as well by telling them how they can republish their book without losing any more money or sleep. My trust has been broken by Tate, but createspace by Amazon is proving to be trustworthy so far”. When I asked Wesley if he had any words to send out to Tate Publishing, he had a simple but powerful message.
“I feel this experience has taught me that as a Christian and an Author, the enemy, the devil is going to do all he can to stop me, but I will fight on, because I believe this is what God wants for me to do. As a messenger and missionary, I will continue to do God's will until He calls me Home.”
Inspiring words of a man undeterred from his goal. I applaud Wesley for his determination and fighting spirit. To overcome obstacles and push on is a character trait that is not often found these days. Determination is a mindset that writers, bloggers, and authors alike could stand to adapt! If you truly feel that writing is your calling, if you are drawn to share your insights with the world as an author or blogger, you may have to fight harder than you anticipated to accomplish your goals. DON’T GIVE UP! Hone your craft, do the work, push on, and JUST KEEP WRITING!
To learn more about Wesley and his writing, you can find him on:
Facebook: Wesley Caldwell
For more stories like this, check out:
Author Interview - Kathleen Mensinger
Author Interview - Lita T. Cruz