From Hot Metal to Cool Books
Discouraged about ever publishing your book? Don’t give up. There are [letterpress] options you may not yet have explored.
Do-it-yourself publishing has become an affordable and, sometimes, relatively easy way to turn your manuscript into the book you have long dreamed of publishing. But in this world of ho-hum, print-on-demand books, what chance does a writer have to make his or her book stand apart? We have become locked into the idea that computer-generated books are our only option: electronic publishing or nothing. And this prison of either/or has left many writers frustrated. Absolutely, there is a place for on-demand-publishing. It has opened up a world of possibilities for writers to sidestep the cumbersome and discouraging routine of searching for an agent or filling desk drawers with stacks of rejection notices.
But while the publishing world has been transformed by print-on-demand, it has been condemned to a new world of formula books, books that are cranked out by the hundreds of thousands in modern book factories that pride themselves on “instant” publishing. These books look alike because they are alike. They have to be if those printing factories are going to survive. But in this race to the bottom, in the passion to cut costs, much of the charm and appeal of books published long ago has vanished.
Print-on-demand is no longer the only option
Until recently, print-on-demand publishing, either with traditional paper books or new electronic books, has been the only reasonable alternative for people with limited budgets.
But times they are a changing!
Interestingly, while electronic do-it-yourself publishing has become the go-to option for authors, old-fashion letterpress book printing has enjoyed an amazing revival. It’s no secret that in the past few decades, letterpress printing has been rediscovered as the gold standard of printed wedding invitations. But often it is incredibly expensive. Certainly, high prices add a mystique to the process as some printers have purposely crafted the illusion that letterpress printing must be expensive printing. It feeds their bottom line.
As the old song says, “It ain’t necessarily so.”
This is particularly true with some innovative letterpress printers who have turned their attention to printing short-run books. Whether it be poetry, short stories, novels or memoirs, self-publishing the letterpress way can be the most cost-effective way to transform your manuscript from the ordinary into a keepsake and do it within a budget.
Explore your options
Having your book typeset into hot metal and then letterpress printed isn’t free, but for those with a yen to step away from the ordinary while confined by budget restrictions, it no longer beyond your reach. Call me for a one-on-one consultation and a free quote.
Of course, I would like to be your book printer, but I am not the right one for every author, nor for every book project.
Over the years that I have been typesetting and printing books, authors have asked lots of questions about the letterpress process. Rightfully, you will want to know whether having your book letterpress printed makes sense. I have pulled together the most frequently asked questions and will attempt to answer them both on my web site and through my blogs and occasional newsletters. If you would like to receive my newsletters, just fill out this simple form.
If you have special questions you would like to discuss, please feel free to write or to call. I will do what I can to answer your inquiries. Whether you select me as your printer, choose another letterpress printer or decide to use on-demand printing, I hope you will at least explore all available publishing options and not be locked into thinking you are condemned to print-on-demand.
A little about my shop and services
Here in this old-fashioned printing shop, I offer a range of editorial and publishing services to make the process of getting your book published as easy as possible:
- Help with editing your manuscript.
- Ghost writing, when needed.
- Design recommendations.
- Binding advice.
I was frustrated with people telling me that while they dream of publishing their books with letterpress printing, they can’t afford to do so. I knew it didn’t have to be that way and figured there had to be ways to make the process more affordable so that people with limited resources could have their dream book done in hot metal and printed letterpress. I worked to streamline the entire typesetting/printing/binding process and, as a result, I have been able to print affordable letterpress books for people across the United States. You might call my shop a Kindle-free zone where I specialize creating limited-edition books and pamphlets for discriminating writers who want their manuscripts to exude a refined, quiet elegance. Letterpress can do it classically and affordably.
Letterpress books a step above the crowd
With my collection of handset type, Linotype and Ludlow typecasting equipment and platen and cylinder presses and my in-house book binding service, together we can take your dream from manuscript to finished book all under one roof.
What some say about their letterpress books
Some of the authors who have had their books typeset, printed and bound by me shared their observations with me and you may find their comments useful. So have a look at what they wrote before deciding whether letterpress printing makes sense for you.
Please contact me if you would like more information about the letterpress options available and about how we can work together to craft the book you always dreamed of publishing. You can be an independent publisher and enjoy the satisfaction of seeing your book(s) become reality. When working with me so you don’t sign away your rights, you enjoy total control over every aspect of marketing and you keep all your profits. That’s just part of the streamlined process I have created to make letterpress books affordable.