real time web stats

Saturday, March 18, 2017

This Week at a Publishing Startup: Decisions

This week in a #publishing startup: a week of decisions. Doing the calculations, I found out that to make the potentially 480pg illustrated 8x10 hardcover Series 2 "The Owl from Oblivion" economically feasible to sell, I would have to have a 5000 book print run with 1900 books being received by people contributing $60 to my planned Kickstarter. That's a big #Kickstarter. I'm sure the book will be worth it but communicating that to a prospective donor in a way that will motivate enough people to go that far will be an immense marketing problem. It won't be the biggest book Kickstarter ever, so that will be good. Anyway that's a marketing problem that will have to be solved in the future. The decision this week is who is going to print this book and how would I receive the books. The interesting thing is that China is gone as a possible printer. China printers do not want to risk the Trump irrational response so they have chosen not to play. They have raised shipping costs and printing costs to high levels to cover the perceived risk. Here's irony for you: "The US is too risky a country to be a good customer." One went so far as to think it was okay just to dump an ocean shipping container on my doorstep. Ha ha ha, too funny. So I confined my search to North American offset book printers and finally found two that offered economically viable prices. They both seem to be very good printers that will do a very high quality print job, which is important since many pages are illustrated. This search was very hard. Most American presses print books at outrageous prices, especially a fine color collectable book like this one will be. They like to print cheaply made books on crappy paper in black and white.  I guess that's what the masses still want to buy. Read and discard, not keep as a treasured item. When you are starting a company in a place with some of the highest real estate prices in the world, receiving 12 42"x42" pallets weighing 1750lbs each is no easy matter. But I believe I have that problem solved. The hardest problem though will be to convince you to show up to the Kickstarter and convince you to donate and receive this beautiful book as a gift.