Part Eleven: The wise women in the woods

The hero’s journey has many recurring themes. Supernatural aid, the wise man, the helper that appears innocently dressed as a beggar, shop keeper, or editor supreme, is as prevalent in my story as it is in… my story.

With my manuscript complete and heart filled with joy, I stepped bravely into the forest of self-publishing… and got lost immediately. Thankfully, there are those who have walked this path ahead of me. Some were kind enough to leave breadcrumbs. was my one-stop-shop for finding and partnering with developmental editors, proofreaders, illustrators, interior designers etc. It was also a veritable treasure trove of information on how to publish your book once you were eventually finished.

It was there that I partnered with true professionals, freelance editors, artists, and authors willing to offer their time and expertise helping other dreamers find their way through the trees. Like most things in life, you get what you pay for, so no, these services were not free— nor should they be. But what I found was a range of options at varying degrees of experience and cost. I chatted with perhaps 30+ individuals through various stages of this project, and never once did any of them make me feel like I didn’t belong.

There are other sites, other communities on Facebook and Twitter that were also helpful in navigating through those first critical steps. The important thing is I realized quickly that despite the fear of the unknown, I was far from alone. Every hero needs a guide, that mystical figure that seems to nudge you in just the right direction. To the Tom Bombadil’s of the world— blessings!

Thanks for reading.

Salt and Ruin,


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