Author’s Corner: Kingsport woman releases two books, helps other authors self-publish

Holly Viers • Updated Jan 19, 2019 at 1:07 PM

KINGSPORT — Model City resident Cassie Kitzmiller knows a thing or two about writing and publishing books.

In addition to releasing two of her own books, with more in the works, Kitzmiller helps other local authors share their stories by walking them through the process of self-publishing.

“The margin to get out there is lower than ever before,” she said, “and anybody can get their books into the world if you’ve got a story to tell or a passion project.”

What is your background?

Kitzmiller was born in West Virginia, grew up in Memphis and moved to Kingsport. She earned a degree in interior design from East Tennessee State University and previously owned Gracious Designs, a home décor and interior design store with locations in Jonesborough and Johnson City.

After having her third child, Kitzmiller stepped into other roles. She now owns Noelle, a seasonal décor shop in Jonesborough, and is also an author and small business coach.

Describe your books.

Kitzmiller’s first book, “The Art of the Tree,” was released electronically in November 2017 and in print in October 2018. Using her background in interior design and professional decorating, Kitzmiller provides simple tips for decorating Christmas trees.

“It was kind of a mix of background and passion and experience,” Kitzmiller said. “A lot of people have really enjoyed it, because it’s basic tips, but I teach a lot of things that you may not think of and different techniques, so it’s applicable to almost everybody.”

Her second book, “Three Sneezes in a Row,” is written with young children in mind. Released in March 2018 and illustrated by Mark Nino Balita, a Filipino illustrator, the book was inspired by a real-life story involving one of Kitzmiller’s sons.

“I was sitting on my sofa and my little one sneezed three times, and a little rhyme popped into my head, and I thought, ‘That would be the cutest little book,’ ” Kitzmiller said. “I had self-published (“The Art of the Tree”) at this point, but I hadn’t done a children’s book, so I wanted to go through the process of finding an illustrator and kind of walking that route.”

Where can the books be purchased?

Both of Kitzmiller’s books are sold locally at Noelle in Jonesborough. They’re also available on Amazon in electronic and paperback versions.

What’s next?

Kitzmiller is planning to turn her children’s book into a series, with the second book, “Three Ballerinas in a Row,” to be released in the spring. She also has ideas for more holiday decorating books, though they’re still in the planning stages.

In the meantime, she hopes to help more prospective authors find success through self-publishing.

“Self-publishing has just really opened the doors to allow more people into the market without quite so much up front,” Kitzmiller said. “You may not make as wide of a reach, but you have more control over who you reach and how you reach them.”

For more information, search for “Author Cassie Kitzmiller” on Facebook.