Meredith Maslich, CEO


 

I’m a book nerd. One of my favorite childhood memories is going to the bookmobile on summer mornings. I’d walk the few blocks with my mom and little brother, clutching my books from the previous week and wondering what new books I was going to find. When we got to the parking lot where the bus was parked, we’d run ahead to join our friends, and as I made a child’s version of small talk, I’d have one eye on the dark interior of the bookmobile, anxious to get inside.

As the other mothers ushered their kids on board, I’d feign a shared exasperation, but secretly I was relieved to finally be climbing aboard. Slipping into the cool, dark interior that smelled wonderfully and comfortingly of oldBookMobile books and yellowing plastic covers was like slipping into another world. I’d linger in the back, running my fingers over the raised letters of the category labels, waiting for a great title or cover design to catch my attention. I’d stand in the narrow aisle, breathing in that wonderful booky smell, savoring the potential of each book as I flipped to the back or inside flap to read the description as my mom had taught me.

This was my happy place, as much for what it was as for what it gave me: books to keep me company and fill my mind all summer. At night, I’d stay up till sunrise reading, feeling so grownup, so bold being the only one awake in the house.

When I was in high school, I was trapped in the house during an unexpected ice storm with only one unread book. And it turned out to be a terrible book. The characters were unrealistic, and the plot had zero tension or conflict. I’d never given up on a book before, but in a fit of frustration, I threw it across the room, yelling the question that had been repeating in my mind since page 1: “WHO CARES?!” I was angry and, honestly, a little bit heartbroken at being so disappointed by a book. I felt personally betrayed by the writer. She’d failed to entertain—or, at a minimum, occupy my mind. I left the book splayed on the floor for months as its punishment, and every time I looked at it, I’d shake my fist at the waste.

Of course, by the time I finished college, I’d realized just how vast and deeply subjective was the category of “bad books.” And as I tried my own hand at writing, I learned how easy it was to fall into that category of “bad writing.” But I also discovered that I enjoy writing almost as much as I enjoy reading. However, most of my writing ended up being academic papers as I earned my master’s in organizational management from George Washington University and started my first company, which was a nonprofit consulting firm.

Shortly after, I discovered Story District and the world of first-person narrative storytelling, and I was immediately as at home as I’d been in that bookmobile. After telling a few stories about my life on stage, I joined the board of directors and then the teaching faculty, and as a result, I’ve had the privilege of spending nearly a decade studying, analyzing, teaching, and practicing the art of storytelling. If I was a stickler for strong narrative elements like tension and climax before, now I’m straight-up obsessed.

I never planned to start a publishing company, though looking back it seems like an inevitable stage in my personal and professional development. As the CEO of Possibilities Publishing Company, I can use my degree and experience in organizational management to build and run a business that lets me spend all day reading, talking to writers, talking about writing, and helping to put high-quality books out into the world.

Our authors are book nerds and lovers of words who know how to tell a story (even the nonfiction writers). I only publish books that I think would have been worthy of a spot on those crowded bookmobile shelves, the kind that you start reading at bedtime and don’t put down until sunrise. Books written by authors as excited as I am to not only share their words, but to push the boundaries and norms established by traditional publishers.

Now that you know a little about me, learn more about Possibilities Publishing Company.

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