Meet the Author
Carolyn Schriber hated history classes when she was growing up because they required little but memorization. Once she was so bored by the material that instead of answering an essay exam on the Revolutionary War, she filled in the space by writing several verses of “The Star-Spangled Banner.” The professor gave her an A, which may have suggested that he was as tired of names and dates as she was. Or maybe he was just impressed that she knew more than the first verse.
Eventually, however, she discovered a teacher who was an enthusiastic story-teller, and her love of history blossomed. While her husband served as a career Air Force officer, she taught high school Latin and English wherever they happened to be stationed. Then she went on to earn her doctoral degree in medieval history from the University of Colorado and spent the last seventeen years of her teaching career as the kind of college professor she had always wanted to have.
After her retirement from teaching at Rhodes College, Schriber used her training and talents to examine a little-known event at the beginning of the Civil War. Taking her great-uncle’s letters as a starting point, she analyzed the strategic errors that turned the Battle of Secessionville into a rout (A Scratch with the Rebels, 2007). In 2009, tired of the rigmarole and delays of traditional publishing, Schriber decided to become a self-publisher. She founded her own company, Katzenhaus Books, and since then has assumed total responsibility for producing eleven of her own books, including second editions of two that had formerly been issued by traditional houses. (The name “Katzenhaus“ came from the four cats who shared their house with Carolyn and who spend their days in her office, making sure she kept writing.)
Being an independent publisher, she notes, is not easy. It involves dealing with outside service providers who provide editing, design, formatting, and printing. It also calls for knowledge of computer programs, social media, public relations, and finance. But it also has its own rewards, giving the author-publisher complete control over the final product and a closer relationship with customers.