About Salish Ponds Press

 Salish Ponds Press is located a stone's throw away from the banks of the Salish Ponds in Fairview, Oregon. The two ponds were once gravel pits. When the pits gave out after the great Oregon gravel rush of 1899, the city filled the holes with water, and now fisherman line the banks most mornings. Salish Ponds Press doesn't have anything to do with the ponds, the gravel pit, or the fisherman, but every press needs a name and Salish Ponds makes a fairly good one.

Salish Ponds Press was started in 2009, by Orrin Onken as a way to publish a murder mystery he had been writing. He learned from browsing the internet that if he wanted to get his book published he should write a query letter to a literary agent describing his book. If an agent took him on, the agent would sell his book to a publisher, and then he could go down and see his book on the shelves at Barnes & Noble.  Orrin didn't like the idea much, having had a bad experience with a real estate agent once, but he went ahead and wrote an email to a New York agent with a sample chapter of his novel. The agent never answered his email, proving that he had been right about agents all along.

Orrin decided to start his own publishing company. He registered his limited liability company with the Oregon Secretary of State and even paid the extra five dollars for the stamped copy of the registration. He found a used fake-leather binder to hold the registration and the by-laws of the LLC. He bought a block of ISBNs, the numbers used to identify books in the marketplace. He registered a domain name, got himself a web host, and found a printer for the book. Salish Ponds Press was born.

If all this doesn't seem very professional, that is because it isn't. Orrin is not a good businessman, so the chances of Salish Ponds Press ever making any money are extremely remote. Orrin is not a brilliant writer, so the chances of Salish Ponds Press ever publishing a book of serious literary merit are equally remote. The purpose of the company is to publish entertaining fiction set in the world of addiction, recovery, and twelve step programs. The target audience is people who live in and embrace that world. A lot of those people can't read worth crap, and those who can read seldom go to the effort. Test readers from outside the recovery community have liked the books, but nearly all of them were related to the author. Thus, the demographic for Salish Ponds Press books may not even exist.
On the other hand . . . Well, there really isn't an other hand. If you have been in recovery for a while--long enough be be off the pink cloud and not so long that you have become a humorless bleeding deacon--then the Salish Ponds books offer a good night's entertainment. Leopold Larson, in The Duke of Morrison Street,  is a down-and-out lawyer who, on the way to a legal battle with the biggest firm in town, finds a version of AA that offers a lot more than just sobriety. In Malady Manor
you get a nostalgic tour of residential drug and alcohol treatment as it was done in the 1990s, a tale that shows the more things change the more they stay the same.

If any of you actually got this far in this back page article, you are probably the kind of reader that would enjoy the books. Buy them. Salish Ponds needs the money. Then go to the blog and comment. Orrin will do his best to record the trials and tribulations of the Salish Ponds project there. He would love some company.