The Team

by Jan King

In order to better illustrate how to self publish with the right assistance for aspiring self published authors, we are blogging about an actual project with an author on this site. Below are the bios of the team members who work full time as publishing professionals. The professionals who are taking on new clients give their contact information.


Kim Pearson, Author, ghostwriter and editor
Primary Sources
Issaquah, WA
Kim Pearson is an author, ghostwriter, developmental editor, and the owner of Primary Sources, a writing service that helps others become authors of polished, professional, and compelling books and blogs.  She has authored 6 books of her own, including award-winning Making History: how to remember, record, interpret and share the events of your life; and Dog Park Diary (ghostwritten for a dog!) She has ghostwritten (for people) more than 40 non-fiction books and memoirs, and edited many more, which tell the stories of a wide variety of people and cover a broad range of topics, from saxophones to finance, city histories to hypnotherapy, psychic horses to constipation, and many points in between.  Her program “Living as a Ghost” teaches others the fine art of ghostwriting. Her blog From the Compost shares her musings about the writing and ghosting life:



Jan B. King, author advocate, book coach and publishing strategist
Phoenix, Arizona

She began her career with Merritt Publishing, a then 30-year-old publishing company, in 1983. When the company’s founder retired in 1990, she became President and CEO. Ms. King transformed this small niche publisher into an employee-owned business as well as a recognized brand for financial information to professionals and consumers. She doubled revenues during the first half of her eight-year tenure, finally leading the company through an employee-buyout and its eventual sale to a leading computer based training company in 1998. In 1997, Merritt Publishing was named the 44th largest woman owned/run business in Los Angeles by the Los Angeles Business Journal.

She was one of the founders of the eWomenPublishingNetwork, a division of eWomenNetwork and devoted to transforming women who are experts with important contributions in their fields into successfully published authors. Every year for six years in July just before the eWomenNetwork Conference was a two-day publishing conference that Jan created.

She is the author of several books. Her book Business Plans to Game Plans is praised by academics and business people alike and is in its 3rd edition (John Wiley & Sons, 2004). She is currently working on a book for new authors, Author Smart which will be available in early 2013. She has also published two Kindle only ebooks detailed on this website and sold on Amazon. Ms. King is a long-time member of the Author’s Guild.

She is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Southern California with a BA in History and Economics, is a certified NxLevel Entrepreneurial Training Program instructor and holds the SPHR (Senior Professional in Human Resource) designation from the Society of Human Resource Management. In 2002, she received the award for “Outstanding Performance as a Small Business Woman’s Advocate” from the SBA/California Small Business Development Centers.

Ms. King’s views on business and on publishing have been widely quoted in Investor’s Business Daily, Fortune Small Business, Working Woman Magazine, the American Bar Association’s Bar Leader magazine, Small Business USA, Business Finance, the Los Angeles Business Journal, and on numerous business web sites. She has also appeared on Making It! a small business television program on KTTV Los Angeles, The Economic Journal, a PBS business program, as well as on numerous nationally syndicated business radio programs. She writes and speaks extensively on publishing, employee ownership and participative management, and business planning.


Janica Smith, virtual author’s assistant
Austin, TX

Janica is the owner of Adminismith, which she founded in 2007. She became an entrepreneur after 25 years as an administrative assistant in a variety of businesses. She has provided bookkeeping services to a variety of non-profit organizations, small businesses, and individuals.
She also has over 10 years in a variety of direct sales companies both being responsible for training and coaching and having held management positions in two companies.
She currently works with professional speakers to manage their calendars and speaking engagements, coordinating their travel and presentation details to allow them to focus on delivering messages to their audiences.
She also works with authors through the process of writing, publishing and marketing their books, and has a particular affinity for working with “non-techies” to teach them the basics of using social media for getting the word out about their business.
She enjoys taking care of details and providing the framework that allows creative people to flourish.
Michelle Scappace, Virtual Author’s Assistant

Michelle’s Virtual Assistance
Mesa, AZ
(919) 951-9574

HiRes-Michelle_Scappace-8048-Edit2As an Author’s Assistant, Michelle possesses the knowledge of navigating the publishing process and has the ability to save the author time and the skills to help speed up the publishing process. Her goal is to assist authors and publishers overcome any obstacles getting in the way of their productivity and impending success.

She is a graduate of the Professional Chef Program at the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts and has a passion for creating delectable foods for her family and friends. She has worked as a freelance writer for online promotional product advertising; writing web content, creative product descriptions and scripts for informational PowerPoint presentations and YouTube videos.

Michelle is a business professional with over twenty-five years experience providing executive administrative support and office management.  She has expertise in marketing and has been responsible for scheduling and overseeing developer conferences and trade shows throughout the United States and abroad.



Lauren Hidden, editor
New Cumberland, PA

Lauren Hidden is the founder of The Hidden Helpers, L.L.C. Started in 2003, Lauren provides editorial services, including manuscript reviews, writing coaching, editing, proofreading and virtual author support to traditionally published and self-published authors. She also collaborates with high-level professionals to develop and polish their writing.

Lauren is the co-author of the books, Write It Right: The Ground Rules for Self-Editing Like the Pros and Entrepreneurial Freedom: How to Start and Grow a Profitable Virtual Assistance Practice.

Lauren is a graduate of Shippensburg University with a B.A. in Communications/Journalism. She is the past Marketing Director and IVAACast Managing Editor for the International Virtual Assistance Association and is an active volunteer for VA League. She is a certified Professional Virtual Author’s Assistant and a certified Social Media Marketing Specialist.

Joy Reyes, web designer
Manila, The Philippines

Joy T. Reyes was born and raised in Manila, Philippines and spent 5 years earning a degree in Computer Engineering.

In 2001, the company she was working for needed a website. They didn’t have a web development department at that time so they browsed through our old resumes to see who could handle the job. That was when they learned that Joy was a painter and that she enjoyed dabbling with graphics software.

It was the turning point in her life. As soon as she learned that she could convert graphics to HTML she instantly fell in love with web designing and the constant challenge of learning new things everyday. She does it all – from composition to typography, to color schemes and grids, to CSS to theming applications and many other applications yet to be discovered.

The web design community is both inspiring and competitive and Joy says it’s impossible not to become a better designer after surrounding yourself with creative people. Now that she has over 9 years of web design experience she says, “If I can create and translate ideas into graphics and make someone happy because of it, that’s a dream job if there ever was one.”


Cathy Davis, book designer and brand consultant
Davis Creative
St. Louis, MO

As a veteran marketing professional, Cathy’s love of books was sparked early-on while providing catalog design and retail window display for a high-end regional bookseller. Followed by almost two decades in marketing high-net-worth financial services as Creative Director for Bank of America Trust and then TIAA-Cref Trust, Cathy began working for herself in January of 2004, providing Brand Strategy and Graphic Design services. She came full-circle as authors began to seek out her services, and now, as a Professional Author Consultant, Cathy helps her clients become authors, and her authors become independent publishers — utilizing self-publishing as a creative marketing tool.

Specializing in custom book design for both print and ebooks, her passion is to help authors look good, get noticed and build a business around their book — both on the retail shelf and online. Her network of professional alliances includes virtual assistants, ghostwriters, editors, proofreaders, indexers, publicists, web designers and illustrators. To-date, Davis Creative designs have been disseminated throughout 41 states and 11 countries.

Cathy is author and illustrator of Seemore Frog and the Midnight Flight of the CanBees, a motivational children’s coloring book, in limerick format for ages 6 to 16.  She also oversees a compantion website (, Planting Seeds of Positive Perspective, where their designs can be ordered as products for home and office.

Cathy is a board member of the St. Louis Publishers Association and sits on the Education Committee of the Missouri Venture Forum.  She lives in St. Louis, Missouri with her husband and two guard Schnoodle dogs.
Sheila M. Ryan, Indexer
Ryan Indexing
Portland, OR

Sheila M. Ryan has been indexing professionally since 2007. She is a member of the American Society for Indexing and served as Treasurer for the Pacific Northwest Chapter of ASI from 2009–2010. Born and raised in Wisconsin, she currently lives in Portland, Oregon, where she enjoys sweep rowing on the Willamette River.

With degrees in oceanography and environmental management, Sheila specializes in indexing science texts but also write indexes for trade and scholarly publications in numerous subject areas. Prior to indexing, Sheila worked for state government as a regulatory analyst, reviewed environmental impacts at a consulting firm, and performed water quality tests at a marine lab. Her science education and work experiences trained her to write clear, concise text, which is also critical for writing indexes that are the most helpful to readers. Sheila enjoys the creative process of writing an index and watching its structure form as she adds key concepts and creates cross references. Each index is a new challenge and Sheila enjoys working with authors to help them realize their project vision.