December 26, 2012
Books, mailing labels and mailing envelopes arrive! Open the first box and a proud father moment. Autographing all the books. Loading them in envelopes and applying mailing labels - Cecil Uyehara (father in law), Vera Uyehara (wife), Morgan Wood (son) and me; images by Lilia Wood (daughter)
We've started a new Christmas tradition - packaging up books* to mail out. My relatives, who thought they were coming to have a nice meal and share presents, ended up stuffing (carefully) books into bubble mailers and sticking on mailing labels. And tomorrow we visit the post office for the 3rd time with 36 packages to mail - mostly overseas this time. Each package takes the post office clerk about 30-40 seconds to process, much to the disgruntlement of people in line behind me. I am learning that the hardest part of publishing a book is not writing it, but distributing it. Maurice Collins and I decided to do all of the work ourselves rather than work with an established publishing company. This gives us complete control over the process but is certainly a lot of work. Nominally, we make a greater profit than normal publishing's 15%, but that depends on knowing what we are doing and this is definitely a tremendous learning experience. In other words, I underestimated postage rates by a factor of two for the first 30 foreign orders, filling out customs forms assumes my time is worth zero dollars/hour, and various other unanticipated issues occur. But I think Maurice would agree that despite all the work involved in creating, printing, marketing and mailing this has been a great experience and we are - almost - ready to do it again. We hope that if you like our Atlas you'll let your friends, astronomy clubs members and others know. Tomorrow I'll share information about a Christmas present I received...
- The book is, of course, the 21st Century Atlas of the Moon
After today's trip to the post office 88 copies of the 21st Century Atlas of the Moon have been mailed - about half of the pre-orders received. I would very much like to learn when your copy arrives and if it is in good condition. And if you have any comments about the atlas itself. You can post such information in the comments section of the Atlas page. And I await the discovery of the one error - not a typo - that I have noticed so far.
Yesterday's LPOD: Comments?
Tomorrow's LPOD: Another Good One