Pubslush is a global crowdfunding platform for the literary world. It enables authors to raise money and gauge the initial audience for new book ideas, as well as allows readers to provide financial support and help bring books to life. Pubslush is about giving an opportunity to authors, giving a voice to readers, and giving books to less fortunate children who do not have access to literature. For every book sold, the company donates a kids’ book to a child in need.
Pubslush was founded by educator and philanthropist Hellen Barbara, who serves as president of the company. Pubslush takes its name and inspiration from the slush pile, which refers to the manuscripts sent to publishers and literary agents by authors. Most manuscripts in the slush pile are never published, and Barbara created Pubslush to give authors a chance to be discovered.
“It was my hope that just as American Idol provided an opportunity for singers across America to be showcased, Pubslush would provide an opportunity for great writing talent,” she says. “I was impressed with the idea of crowdfunding, and I thought it could be a good fit for the publishing arena.”
Though Barbara feels it’s important to be aware of what’s happening in the publishing industry and the world, she doesn’t concern herself with competition. Instead, she focuses on generating out-of-the-box ideas and finding ways to be a better person and make a difference. She also encourages her team to say what’s on their minds.
“There’s no idea that I consider too far-fetched or crazy,” Barbara says. “Any idea that’s presented is discussed.” If everyone on the team thinks it can work, they then make it happen.
Prior to starting Pubslush, Barbara founded and served as president of For the Kids Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to improving education in New York. She is fluent in Spanish and Italian and enjoys golfing in her free time.