In the January 2010 issue of the SPAN Connection print newsletter, I announced SPAN's plans to create a certification program for publishers. (Read certification article here.) With a working designation of Professional Independent Publisher or PIP, the certification will be awarded to publishers who meet certain criteria with their publishing.
As mentioned in the article, the goal is to give excellent independent publishers the PIP designation and have the certification improve the access for PIP publishers to reviewers, distribution, and other industry services.The goal is daunting. I decided the time is right because the need is great. I believe, in time, the PIP Program will make a huge difference in increasing independent publishers' potential for success.
This is great news for writers! One difficulty with small or indie presses is that many of them haven't been around very long. They have no reputation, they have no track record, they might still be learning the ropes and some, let's face it, might not be on the level. With the PIP program, writers can be sure the indie presses to whom they're submitting meet a certain level of industry standard and are worthy of the investment of their manuscripts.
The program guidelines have not been established but Indie Debut will be following this story closely. More information will be posted as it becomes available.