Former Parkite Stacy Dymalski wins a NYC Big Book Award
For information about Stacy Dymalski and her book “The Memoir Midwife: Nine Steps to Self-Publish Your Book,” visit TheMemoirMidwife.com.
For information regarding Stacy Dymalski’s Park City School District Compass online class “Nine Steps to Self-Publish Your Book,” visit registration.xenegrade.com/pcschools/courseDisplay.cfm?schID=7646" target="_blank">Copy">.
Author Stacy Dymalski, who teaches a virtual book-publishing class through Park City School District’s Compass leisure learning program, is an NYC Big Book Award winner.
The second edition of her how-two manual, “The Memoir Midwife: Nine Steps to Self-Publish Your Book,” was recognized earlier this month as the 2020 winner in the Writing and Publishing category of the world-renowned global contest.
The competition is judged by book-industry experts — publishers, writers, editors, designers and copywriters — who select winners based on overall excellence, according to a press release.
Submissions streamed in from six continents and more than 100 cities, and included books published by an array of independent publishers, the release said.
Dymalski, who is also a TEDx speaker, comedian and screenwriter, said the award came as a surprise.
“Every month I send out a newsletter, and a couple of months ago, the headline article was about book contests,” she said. “One of the people who read the article asked if I did contests. I hadn’t entered one in a long time, so I decided to enter this one. And I won.”
“The Memoir Midwife: Nine Steps to Self-Publish Your Book,” published by Saffire Press, originally hit bookstores in 2015. It leads writers through the self-publishing process and includes end-of-chapter checklists to keep the writers on track.
The title, “The Memoir Midwife,” refers to the idea that creating and self-publishing a book is akin to giving birth, Dymalski said.
“I think creating any type of art is a form of giving life to something,” she said. “It’s like your children. You love it. You nurture it, and even if it doesn’t turn out the way you hoped it would, you still love it, and stand by it.”
Since much of the information needed an upgrade, Dymalski began revising the book in the middle of 2019 for the second edition, which was published right before the following Labor Day.
“I had been collecting data for a while, because technology, which is a big part of the book, changes so quickly,” she said. “I just started compiling and updating my notes and updating chapters, which became the second edition.”
In addition to an editor, Dymalski asked some of her friends and followers to read the updates.
“I wanted to make sure what I wrote was understandable for the people who would use it,” she said. “The great thing was most of those who read the new book wrote reviews, so when the book came out, I already had several reviews.”
Winning the award is an honor, but also a big deal, Dymalski said.
“Book awards are like music awards and movie awards, because they give you some kind of credibility, even though I’m the same person I was before,” she said. “They do make a difference and I have noticed my book sales have gone up.”
Although Dymalski moved to Los Angeles four years ago, she still keeps her Park City and Utah pipeline open.
“For five years I taught self publishing at the University of Utah’s Lifelong Learning Program, and I also taught at the Park City School District Compass leisure learning program,” she said. “Since I moved to Los Angeles, I began teaching story development and self publishing at Pasadena City College and at Glendale Community College. When we pivoted to online classes because of the pandemic, I called the people I knew at the U.’s Lifelong Learning, and at Park City School District to see if I could teach for them again. And they said, ‘Awesome.’”
Dymalski is currently teaching classes for this semester’s Compass lineup, and will teach “Nine Steps to Self-Publish Your Book” on Nov. 10 and 12. She will begin teaching her University of Utah classes during the winter quarter after Christmas break.
“I actually like online classes more than in-classroom training,” she said. “I like the flexibility of it. People also seem less intimidated about asking questions, so the class becomes a dialogue. I’m not one of those teachers who tell their students to hold their questions until the end. I would rather people ask questions when they think of one.”
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