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Meet Lindy Kirk of Birdhouse Press in Pico and Robertson

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lindy Kirk.

Lindy, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I first knew I wanted to be a writer when I was eight and my dad told me that writers can live anywhere and still work. Right then, my interest was piqued. He said it to me shortly after he realized I didn’t have a career in engineering ahead of me (he had to tutor me in math from third grade onward). I always loved reading and books; I had a vivid imagination as a kid (you can ask my imaginary friends; they’ll back me up).

But saying “You want to be a writer” is kind of like saying you want to be a supermodel. It’s a very difficult, competitive thing to become; almost unrealistic.

However, I was very lucky, in my early 20s, to land a couple of internships that allowed me to build my resume, hone my skills, and increase my confidence.

With a trusty English degree in my pocket, I got my first grown-up job in the corporate world. I was essentially writing all the marketing copy for an international beauty distribution company. And while my title and salary sounded good, I hated it. To offset the soul-sucking nature of that job, I began volunteering my writing skills for a shark conservation nonprofit. I wrote their monthly newsletters, I wrote their press releases; basically, anything they needed written, I did. After about a year of volunteering for them, they offered me a full-time position in Los Angeles. So I packed up and made the move out west.

Surprisingly, there’s not a lot of money in saving sharks, so the funding dried up, which landed me back in the position of taking soul-sucking marketing-writing jobs.

In 2014, I got hired by a business development company that specialized in helping people in various industries increase their exposure in their fields. One of the ways they did this was by ghostwriting a book for their clients, and they hired me to be their writer-monkey. Quickly, I realized this process could be done far more efficiently and cost-effective for the client (frankly, they were being ripped off!). But I had no idea how I would ever go about getting clients.

Later that year, I went to a networking event with a guy I was dating. After he introduced me by the wrong name four different times, I wandered off to talk to other people on my own. At that event, I met a plastic surgeon. Through the course of our conversation, it came up that he wanted to write a plastic surgery memoir. We had a mutual “a-ha” moment when he realized that I was a writer. That encounter began an avalanche of serendipitous introductions to people wanting books written and edited.

Within a year, I looked up and was able to quit my job with the business development company. Birdhouse Press itself came into being when several of my clients, whose books I’d ghostwritten, did not want to take the mainstream publishing route. So I formed Birdhouse to provide them an avenue for independent publishing.

And now I sit here, with two titles published, one in the works, a new editing project, and the luxury of being able to focus on my own writing as well!

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Leading up to this, there were a lot of false starts and jobs that were bad fits. However, once the ball got rolling, it’s been a smooth ride.

The biggest challenge — because writers tend to be solitary — was learning how to collaborate, in a ghostwriting partnership. And learning that I’m not always right.

And that I can’t necessarily always persuade people to see things my way just by flashing a dimple.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Birdhouse Press – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Birdhouse Press collaborates with people who want to bring their ideas to life on the page. Writing a book and getting it published is a huge undertaking. As it’s said, “No man is an island.” We guide clients through the entire life cycle of ghostwriting, editing, and publishing regardless of what stage the client begins at.

We deal with all stages of a book, whether a client comes to us with just an idea or a full-fledged already-written manuscript.

I take so much pleasure in helping someone make their idea a reality. It’s rewarding to watch someone take a thought and put in the love, the energy, and the hours to turn it into a tangible book, out in the world forever.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
I never thought in a million years that this was where I’d be. So I’ve learned just to take it a day at a time, and not focus too much on the future. Things have fallen into place pretty well so far; all I can do is hope that this continues, and put in the hard work required to keep it going.

I’m really lucky to have a terrific senior editor, Jelani Yancey, and a delightfully talented intern, Dakota Ladd, in my corner. Just by being here, both of them provide me with much-needed support, encouragement, and proof that this business is a worthwhile endeavor.

If this doesn’t work out, I can always fall back on my ability to… to… oh crap, this really has to work out.

Contact Info:

  • Address: 8812 W. Pico Blvd, Suite 206
    Los Angeles, CA 90035
  • Website: http://birdhousepress.com
  • Phone: 940-735-1811
  • Email: lindy.kirk@gmail.com


Image Credit:

Vanessa Foerster
Jelani Yancey

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