Stairway Publishing

Stairway Publishing was founded in 2005 by Pete Umoff to handle the publishing duties for "A Fine Kettle of Fish", a children's picture book written by Mr. Umoff and illustrated by his long-time friend Craig Tyler.  It was born out of their shared desire to produce the finest children's picture book possible, according only to their own lights, and their jointly held belief that that would not be possible utilizing the traditional publishing model.  It is what would probably be termed a vanity press...not that that's a bad thing.... The role of the vanity press is well-established in English literary lore and tradition.  At its best it connotes the ability of the creator of a work to control its production and thus ensure that his or her original vision is realized. By definition, then the product of the vanity press is only as good as the vision it seeks to realize.  And, of course, the resources devoted to the effort.  But in reality that is true of  any published work. 



What the traditional publisher brings to the party is, really, capital and distribution. What it wants in return is control.  What it promises, but certainly doesn't guarantee, is profit.  Where the ultimate objective is truly the quality of the product and profit is only secondary, the perceived need to seek the services of the traditional publisher diminishes. And where the author has the ability and the willingness to devote sufficient resources to realize the vision, the only question is, ultimately, the clarity of the vision.  And if that's the only question, the perceived need for the traditional publisher diminishes even further. 

 When all of these things come together, the vanity press is born.  Stairway Publishing is such a vanity press.  We hope that "A Fine Kettle of Fish"  clearly demonstrates the quality of our vision and the of depth our commitment to excellence. 


We are proud of our accomplishment. At the same time, Stairway Publishing is unlike the usual vanity press in another sense.  At least for the time being it will focus only on projects in which Mr. Umoff is involved, some involving Mr. Tyler and some not. 

Thus while it serves Mr. Umoff's vanity quite nicely, it will not follow the historical vanity press practice of publishing works of other authors who are willing to pay for its services.  At least, as we said, for now.  In this way we hope we can stay true to the vision and avoid the temptations of mana.  Not that we hate mana, mind you.  To the contrary, we hope that in the long run, by staying true to our vision, we will achieve our primary objectives from which other good things will then flow.  One thing is for sure:  we will have fun doing it.