speaking of e-books

With the recent release of the iPad and the latest iPhone, there’s been a lot of buzz lately about e-books. Here I offer up some thoughts on the subject. You do realize, don’t you, that the “book” part of “e-book” is a metaphor? It’s used to describe a way of presenting text through electronic devices. [...]

a brief history of book printing and binding

The other night in my Print Production Workflow teleclass, some questions came up about terminology and how, exactly, the physical book got put together. Youtube is an invaluable source to help us visualize a process. Here is a curated overview of book printing, from letterpress, the same process that produced the Gutenberg Bible, to the [...]

scanning tips

With good quality scanners available for a few hundred dollars and services advertising pennies per scan, it seems like this is a commodity service. But to get from a faded photograph to a handsome photo printed in a book involves both aesthetic judgment and technical expertise. Here are some tips for making your scanning process [...]

time tracking: what are the numbers telling you

Last week I wrote about the importance of keeping track of all the time you spend on a project: billable and not billable, productive and spinning-your-wheels, brilliantly executed and fatally flawed. This week I want to show you the next step in my process: categorizing and analyzing the time. I used to have much finer [...]

time tracking: are you doin’ it?

I just spent most of a gorgeous Sunday afternoon figuring out how much time a project actually took compared to the proposal estimate. That part was easy: twice as long. Gulp! Now the more difficult question: how much of this was “beyond scope” and can be billed, how much was attributable to poor estimating on [...]

working with a designer-part two

In working with a designer-part one I offered some suggestions on how to begin to select a book designer. That post ended with arranging a time to talk to them on the phone to find out more. So what is it you want to find out? [No, actually, “What will it cost me to do [...]

working with a designer-part one

Yesterday I had a great time being a Speed Coach at the Association of Personal Historians’ Conference Town Square. I met people who have great work and personal experience and skills that they are now bringing to the field of preserving the stories of individuals, families, businesses, organizations and communities. Because they haven’t worked in [...]

partnering for profit

Being among a small community of book designers within the Association of Personal Historians [APH], we often discuss among ourselves how to find more opportunities to partner with writers on book projects. On Saturday, October 24, I will be part of a panel discussion at the APH Annual Conference in Valley Forge, PA, entitled “Partnering [...]

personal histories and freedom of speech

“Freedom of the press is guaranteed only to those who own one.” That was A. J. Liebling’s cynical remark in the early 20th century decrying the monopoly of William Randolph Hearst to control and influence the news. As we celebrate National Freedom of Speech Week, I’m wondering how Liebling would view our world of everyone [...]