Book Publishing Operations: Printers, Publishing Editors, and Cats on a Warm Tin Roof

9 May

Greetings from lovely Albany, Texas! Albany is a small West Texas town northeast of Abilene, Texas, and, as I’ve noted before, home to Rue Judd’s Bright Sky Press. Later on this afternoon I’ll be meeting with Rue, some folks from a university press over in Abilene, and reps from the printer Rue uses in Hong Kong.

Print on demand is all well and good if you have small print runs but, unfortunately, the price of one copy is pretty much the same as a thousand copies. So, to make enough money to be self-sustaining as soon as possible, we’re trying to put some bigger projects together. That way there will be a real price break in the printing costs by virtue of printing 2,000 to 3,000 copies as once. Of course, my big fear is to having 1,800 copies sitting in inventory forever so we’re carefully packaging these upcoming publications to make sure that we can sell all that we print.

West Texas is notoriously arid but lately they have been having a lot of rain. As you can see from the picture below from the doorway of my room at the Albany Motor Inn—click the thumbnail to see a larger view—even early yesterday afternoon it was very dark, pouring rain, and flooding the street behind The Behemoth, the truck I’m using on this trip courtesy of David Day, Transportation Cluster Director at TSTC Waco.

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This morning, thankfully, the skies had cleared and it is shaping up to be a beautiful day. If you look closely at the picture below taken from the doorway to my room—once again, click the thumbnail to see a larger view—you’ll see several cats warming themselves on the metal roof over the house’s back porch.

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This afternoon everyone will have arrived for meetings about all things publishing so I’m hoping to have interesting things—both large and small, anecdotal and professional—to relate in the near future.

Finally, on a different note, I’d like to welcome Todd Glasscock to TSTC Publishing as our new publishing editor. Todd has an undergraduate degree in history and a graduate degree in English, both from Texas State University in San Marcos, Texas. In addition, for many years he worked at the Temple Daily Telegram in Temple, Texas.

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Todd joined us on May 1 and is currently hard at work preparing a new math book for TSTC Harlingen for page layout by Grace Arsiaga, our graphics specialist. Upcoming projects he’ll be working on include developing two technical dictionary projects, line editing on the hand tools book being finished up, and many other books in various stages of production and/or development. In addition, he’s working on a style guide to be used by our editorial interns. We’re certainly glad to have him come aboard!

Mark

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