Editorial note: This is a guest article featuring one of our Evalogue.Life readers, Jeffrey Probst. 

I am Jeffrey Probst, and my writing actually started back in the 1980s.  My brother and I (that’s us to the left) were avid backpackers, and every year we’d gather booklets from the Division of Wildlife Resources, U.S.G.S. maps, and any other info we could find on the High Uinta mountains of Utah.  Keep in mind, this was pre-Internet.  After 20 years of this, we thought there had to be a better way to plan a trip.  There wasn’t, so we decided to create a guidebook with everything needed to plan a backcountry adventure.  High Uintas Backcountry was born in 1996 and revised in 2000.

An instant self-publishing success

The book was self-published and an instant success, becoming the #2 best-selling trail guide in Salt Lake City.   My brother and I delivered the books to sporting goods stores throughout Northern Utah and to businesses surrounding the mountains we loved.  It amazed us to sell cases of books to gas stations, convenience stores, and even liquor stores in the many small towns.  The lesson learned was that bookstores are not the only outlet for book sales.  Perhaps you own book has other markets. It is time to resurrect High Uintas Backcountry by Jeffrey & Brad Probst, and we have just released the third revised edition (chock full of new photos).  It is available on Amazon.com, and we will stock the stores soon.  It is back by popular demand and remains the best guidebook for the High Uintas.  Is it time to plan your next adventure?  Click here to check it out on Amazon. 

(Editorial note from Rhonda: the high Uinta back country is my happy place, and I’ve been a fan of the Jeffrey Probst books for years with several on my shelf. So I was excited to meet him in person and feel delighted when he became a regular reader of the articles on this site).

Transitioning from nonfiction to stories

My new writings are in novel form.  As you might have guessed, I am older than some of you.  I am a Baby Boomer.  I write of my passions, combining love of Nature, traveling, relationships, and issues faced by the growing senior population.  Not coincidently, many of the same problems and desires are shared by younger adults.  Humor and inspirational thoughts are sprinkled throughout my upcoming books.

Deleting a third of the book

I started writing my next novel over five years ago.  It has evolved.  In the first draft, I crammed all my feelings into it.  I wanted to include everything I was passionate about.  There was too much fluff, and I had deflected from the main message.  I deleted a third of the book, removing content that diluted or detracted from the story. Recently, I attended Richard Paul Evans, Premier Author Training.  I asked him how many times he edited or revised each of his novels.  His answer astounded me.  “Seventy.  Polish, polish, polish,” he replied.  I made four more passes through my book, polishing and revising, which resulted in 8,000 fewer words.  Now I’m left with a crisp novel of 67,000 words, and have evolved myself—into a better writer.  I realize this book, or any other, will never be perfect.  If I wait until it is, it will never be published.  It is time to turn it loose.

My new novel is Colors of Truth.  In this book, retired Jackson Richards realizes the truths he has been taught in life are incomplete.  Some are false.  He turns to Nature and the open road to resolve his questions.  With his wife as his companion, he travels the western states, visiting National Parks and Route 66 Americana.  Their journeys lead to trouble and triumph, and ultimately to knowing more about their relationship and personal truths.  Late in life, Jackson is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and he contrives a way to live and die on his terms. I would love your review of Colors of Truth.

Get a free advance copy

If you would like a free copy, please fill out the contact form below and Rhonda Lauritzen will email it to you.  Should you read it, please sent your remarks to me at outlandpub@yahoo.com. The above title is my second fiction work.  The first is Seasons of a Boy.  All my books are available on Amazon.com.  Search for Jeffrey Probst. Best wishes on all your adventures,  Jeff

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Jeff has published several outdoor guidebooks and self-help books.  He is a recent graduate of Richard Paul Evans, Premier Author Training.  The revised High Uintas Backcountry has been released, and look for a new novel later in 2018, Colors of Truth.   Happy trails on all your adventures.

Disclaimer: This page contains affiliate links which means if you purchase one of Jeffrey Probst’s books, we (at Evalogue.Life) make a small commission on Amazon. We appreciate when you buy with our links because it helps fund our free articles. 

2 thoughts on “Tips from Jeffrey Probst, a self-publishing success

  • April 25, 2018 at 6:20 pm

    Fantastic piece and some great tips from Jeff. My reading pile seems to be growing higher again!

    • April 26, 2018 at 11:10 am

      Thank you Stephen! I picked up publishing/marketing tips from him, and and yes my reading stack got bigger too.

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