Welcome to PulpFreePress.com…
I’m Rick Miller and I’m a software engineer, author, and publisher based in the Falls Church, Virginia area. I’m the owner of Pulp Free Press and here’s a short story about how I got into this business.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always liked to write, and I enjoy translating difficult concepts into language that laymen can understand, which led me to another occupation I’ve always felt compelled to pursue, and that is teaching. I’ve served as an adjunct faculty member for several universities and colleges since obtaining my bachelors degree in the mid 1980’s, including Chaminade University of Honolulu, HI, National University, San Diego, CA, Southwestern College, Chula Vista, CA, and Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC), where I currently teach a variety of information technology and programming courses.
The germination for my first book, C++ For Artists: The Art, Philosophy, and Science of Object-Oriented Programming, started towards the end of my navy career, while I was teaching at National University. I was constantly reorganizing the material from the popular C++ textbooks of the day to arrange it so it would flow better into my student’s brains…if that makes any sense. Also, most every textbook presented only short snippets of code, contained numerous typos, and more often than not, examples contained errors that prevented them from compiling, and implementation details were left out or annotated with the dreaded comment: “// Implementation goes here”. These obstructions to understanding frustrated students and motivated me to say “I can do better!”, but getting a book published was no easy task.
I started work on C++ For Artists in 1999 and by 2001 I had enough material ready to submit to a major technical book publisher who visited the Northern Virginia Community College, Annandale campus soliciting authors. After waiting six months during which time the material was subjected to a review by “experts”, the publisher rejected the book on the grounds it was “too advanced” for the community college market. When I asked them to clarify their reply left me stupefied: “Textbooks must be written at the 10th grade level. Your book’s language targets college sophomore engineering students.” It was on that day I decided to publish the book myself and I have never looked back.
Did that last sentence lend you the impression that self-publishing a technical book is a cakewalk? Far from it. I had a lot to learn and the book that guided me in those early days was a nice little work titled The Self-Publishing Manual by Dan Poynter.
I started Pulp Free Press in 2003 and released C++ For Artists late that same year. Since then I have written and published five more titles, not a lot of books, for sure, but I’m proud of each one, and customer feedback assures me I’m on the right track.
Thank you for visiting Pulp Free Press and taking the time to read this story. I sincerely hope you’ll find something here that helps you to better understand the complex world of modern programming languages and technology. If there’s anything I can do for you please contact me directly. My contact information is on the Contact page.