Hey there, time traveller! This article was published 6/12/2011 (2271 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Author Sarah Yates has got plenty of game in the publishing world.
Yates, who lives and works in Osborne Village, recently celebrated the conversion of her young adult novel Lucky Lou Gets Game to an e-book at a signing session at Chapters at St. Vital Centre.
Kindle and KOBO e-book readers can now download the book, which was self-published on paper by Yates’ own Gemma B. Publishing in March 2011 and has since been selling "slowly but well."
Yates — who describes herself professionally as a writer, editor, publisher and researcher — said when she founded her company in 1992, many people frowned upon self-publishing.
"Now people recognize the market has fragmented, making it more economically feasible to target a specific market" Yates said.
"Reading habits have changed with technology and many people, especially young people, prefer e-books.
I wanted my book accessible to these readers because they are often the young generation who read this book."
Yates said Lucky Lou Gets Game is a funny, inspirational coming-of-age novel in which the lead character tackles an unfriendly neighbourhood and learns to play baseball one fateful summer.
The story draws inspiration from Yates’ own life. Her daughter, Gemma, 23, who attends the University of Manitoba, has cerebral palsy — and she wanted her to have a literary role model "who is as active and engaged in life as I wanted Gemma to be."
"Our daughter Gemma is smart and actively involved in her own life. She inspires me with her humour, her persistence and her insights. Like my heroine, she has difficulty speaking, but communicates well."
Winnipeg iconic band, the Weakerthans, also played a role in creating two of the characters. They lent copyright permission to reprint certain song lyrics, which helped establish Winnipeg’s ambiance in the story, Yates said, noting she hopes to collaborate with the band again.
"My next goal is an audio book and my secret wish would be to work with Weakerthans in some way to make this exciting," she said. "I am going to write to John K. Samson about this after Christmas."
Despite her continued success, Yates is quick to point out the chameleon-like qualities needed to survive in the business.
"The thing about being a writer, if you don’t work for the newspaper or a radio station in Winnipeg, you must be able to adapt to change at a moment’s notice," she said.
And despite her deep-rooted love for Winnipeg, Yates started her life across the Atlantic Ocean.
She immigrated to Canada from London, England with her parents and four sisters in 1952.
"My father joined the Canadian Army; they needed doctors and we needed the cash," she said.