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Our Author's Guide

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    About Stories To Tell

    Stories To Tell is an author services company for self-publishing. We are unique because authors keep all rights and royalties, hiring us for just the help they need. We publish print books and ebooks with CreateSpace, Lightning Source, and with printers across the country.

    Our team of editors and book designers can help authors with all levels of editing, book layout, custom cover designs, and much more. We help authors at every step to create and publish a professional-quality book. We produce fiction, non-fiction, and creative non-fiction works, and specialize in illustrated books, family histories, and memoirs.

    Nancy Barnes

    Nancy Barnes is the founder and managing editor of Stories To Tell, a team of editors and book designers who help authors to prepare their books for publishing. She helps to plan the book's content, edit text and images, and design professional, unique books, suitable for private printing or commercial publishing.

    Nancy Barnes is the author of Stories To Tell: An Easy Guide to Self Publishing Family History Books and Memoirs. Building on a career as an award-winning teacher, Nancy has worked as a writer and a “book doctor” to develop fiction and non-fiction. Since 2007 she has specialized in the “creative nonfiction” of memoir and family history. Nancy also has experience in graphic design and commercial publishing, coordinating projects with marketers, designers, and printers. Her successful career path was recently featured in Starting Your Career as a Freelance Editor by Mary Embree.

    Merritt “Biff” Barnes

    Biff Barnes is a writer, educator, and historian. He earned his MA in History from the University of San Francisco, and was a William Robertson Coe Fellow in American History at Stanford University. He taught history and writing for 28 years. His work appears in California Publisher, California History, California Living, and American West. Biff has extensive experience with historical research, oral history, and interviewing techniques. He provides editing and coaching to fiction and nonfiction authors as they gather and prepare their stories for publication.

    Nancy and Biff are seasoned presenters who work together to create an interactive, upbeat audience experience. Their story is told in the new book Public Speaking for Authors by Patricia Fry. Nancy and Biff speak frequently at national and regional writing and family history events.

    Michaela Slattery

    Michaela Slattery brings her talents as a graphic artist to our clients who seek a unique work of art for their book's cover or for interior illustrations. For 25 years, Michaela worked as a graphic designer and produced everything from logos to annual reports. A few years ago, she found a new passion: designing book covers. Now she uses her love for type, photography and painting to produce outstanding art. She’s an original New Englander who now lives in Arizona.

    Sarah Hoggatt

    Sarah Katreen Hoggatt has authored and designed several books, including the recently released In the Wild Places, and numerous articles. A freelance writer, editor, international speaker, and spiritual director with a passion for ministering to fellow souls, she holds a Masters degree from George Fox Evangelical Seminary. Sarah lives in Salem, Oregon; her website can be found at



    Todd Samovitz

    Todd Samovitz is a Los Angeles-based oral historian. With a background as a lawyer, a Writers Guild screenwriter, and a history major, Todd offers ghostwiting services based on in-person oral history interviews. Todd "creates a professional and contextual narrative of your past that will come alive like any other published biography." Learn more about his background and services at

    Ben Kostyack

    Ben Kostyack is currently an intern at Stories To Tell. Ben is a journalism student and a talented writer who is gaining skills in media, web communications, and the self-publishing industry. He is contributing to the Stories To Tell blog by exploring topics that are of interest to developing writers. He has been a sports writer for his school newspaper, The Wilson Beacon, for three years. Ben has earned academic honor roll for his three years of high school. Ben’s goal is to earn a degree in English. He currently lives in Washington, D.C.


    Our Commitment

    Each of our books is the outcome of much work and dedication. They have lasting value, and we are dedicated to historical preservation. In addition to the books we create, we help our clients to preserve precious family documents and photographs. All materials, including sound recordings, story transcripts, and digitized images prepared for each book, as well as all the design files, are available to clients free on CD, and they are backed up forever in our archive.



    International Society of Family History Writers and Editors