Sonja Hakala was ten when she decided she wanted to be a writer when she grew up. That’s the same year she discovered the world of books at her town library, a place she describes as akin “to Ali Baba’s cave.”
She started writing professionally for the Valley News, the daily newspaper published in the area everyone calls the Upper Valley, a clutch of towns in Vermont and New Hampshire surrounding White River Junction and Norwich, Vermont and Lebanon and Hanover, NH.
Once she a had a bit of experience under her belt, she branched out into writing and editing in the magazine segment of the communications biz.
But her goal was always book publishing.
An inveterate do-it-yourselfer, Sonja wanted to know about the book publishing business so she would have more control over her writing career. So she plunged in, working as a marketing manager for a traditional publisher, learning how to design the interiors of books and their covers, sharpening her editorial skills.
When the company she worked for was sold to a bigger fish in the publishing pond, Sonja decided to freelance, publishing her own work as well as helping other authors find their way through the publishing jungle.
With the advent of online book selling (think Amazon.com) and the digital printing of books, Sonja established her own publishing company, Full Circle Press LLC.
Full Circle Press is a book production company which means it provides the services and guidance authors need to independently publish their own books.
To help this process along, Sonja wrote Your Book, Your Way: How to Choose the Best Option for Your Book, Your Wallet and Yourself. This book is an overview of the entire publishing landscape with in-depth information about the way it all works behind the scenes.
In 2013, she wrote Publish Your Book Your Way: A Workbook and Guide to the Business of Independent Publishing. This workbook is specific to the needs of folks who want to take control of their writing careers.
She teaches workshops and classes based on both of these books.
But you want to know about the Carding novels. Well, they’ve been developing for quite a while.
Part of The Road Unsalted is based on a true incident that Sonja observed while she was a reporter. The second Carding novel, Thieves of Fire, is currently in the editing process and will be published in early 2014. The third book, Queen Without a King, is being written.
All of the Carding novels are inspired by Sonja’s passionate love for her home state where she lives on a river with her husband, their dog Goldie, and their cat George Burns.