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David Spivak-Focus Magazine
11-Mar-2008, 13:18
Is now ready to accept submissions for photography books. After going over prices with different paper, binding and printing companies, I am confident that we can we offer photographers, museums and galleries books and other printed materials (direct mail pieces, calendars, etc.) at a very high quality, but we can offer these products at a price that's less expensive than you would get through going to one of these printers on your own. Where we really come in for you is that we take care of a lot of the other work for your book (barcodes, ISBN, etc.) and take care of marketing and advertising the book as well. The website is now fully operational. If you'd like to visit it, please take a look. www.focuspublishing.net.

And for all those wondering, yes, Michael Smith and Lodima Press can offer their services to you through us and if you'd like, he can work with you on everything from beginning to end on making sure this book meets not only yours, but his standards for how a fine art photography book should look.

Feel free to E-Mail me with questions or ask for a quote if you're interested in doing a book.

PViapiano
11-Mar-2008, 17:30
It might be a good idea to get rid of the Enter splash page, especially since it is a Flash page and the visitor must click on it twice to activate it, etc, etc, etc...

All best practices web standards designers will tell you the same thing...

Merg Ross
11-Mar-2008, 18:13
Also check for typos. I noted one on the submission page.

David Spivak-Focus Magazine
11-Mar-2008, 18:15
It might be a good idea to get rid of the Enter splash page, especially since it is a Flash page and the visitor must click on it twice to activate it, etc, etc, etc...

All best practices web standards designers will tell you the same thing...

The splash page is there to be able to have a true HTML page that will allow keywords (something I'm working on as we speak). You cannot have keywords in a flash only index page. This will increase traffic and hopefully future customers.


Also check for typos. I noted one on the submission page.

Where??

Merg Ross
11-Mar-2008, 18:30
"numer "of pages

David A. Goldfarb
11-Mar-2008, 18:43
"We are here to help you publish your book for [sic] less stress" [...]

There are more grammatical and stylistic errors, but since it's not possible to cut and paste from your Flash pages, you'll have to find them yourself.

Dan Schmidt
11-Mar-2008, 20:17
I found it odd that the pictures are covers of Focus Magazine issues. It makes it seem like the emphasis is on publishing in a magazine, not producing a book.

Yes, I have read the earlier threads on the subject and do get the gist of what you are trying to do, but still I found it peculiar.

Also it really seemed like an instance where flash was truly not needed. If you really want to get the content of your website (content is better than keywords as I understand it) flash is probably not the way to go.

David Spivak-Focus Magazine
11-Mar-2008, 22:49
I found it odd that the pictures are covers of Focus Magazine issues. It makes it seem like the emphasis is on publishing in a magazine, not producing a book.

Yes, I have read the earlier threads on the subject and do get the gist of what you are trying to do, but still I found it peculiar.

Also it really seemed like an instance where flash was truly not needed. If you really want to get the content of your website (content is better than keywords as I understand it) flash is probably not the way to go.

Since we have not published a book, yet, it would be impossible to use images of books. Although Michael did say I could use book covers from books that Lodima Press did, it wouldn't be a fair comparison. Lodima's Books are printed by the best printer in the world.

Once we get a couple of books printed, those images will be replaced with book covers.

I understand yours and others' reluctance to FLASH. I can definitely appreciate everyone's opinions on that subject and I thought about offering an HTML version, and perhaps that's something I'll do in the future... right now, we just wanted to get a site up and running that actually gave information and not just the ability to sign up for a newsletter.

Thank you for everyone else pointing to me the errors. I think I updated the wrong FLASH version that had these typos... I e-mailed my designer to send me the latest FLASH file. I think all of the errors will be gone by then.

IanG
11-Mar-2008, 23:47
Book publishing is far more than getting something printed.

Could you elaborate on how these books would be designed, edited and also the marketing and sales strategies.

There's a huge difference between magazine publishing and quality book publishing. It's not many weeks since you were asking about online publishing services like Blurb & Lulu.

Dewi Lewis, formerly of Cornerhouse, has written extensively about publishing Photo books, and has a book "Publishing Photography" on the subject. It's an essential read before anyone begins going down the avenue of getting their work published. I should add this comment is about the Photographer preparing his work and text for publishing.

Ian

David Spivak-Focus Magazine
12-Mar-2008, 00:31
Book publishing is far more than getting something printed.

Could you elaborate on how these books would be designed, edited and also the marketing and sales strategies.

There's a huge difference between magazine publishing and quality book publishing. It's not many weeks since you were asking about online publishing services like Blurb & Lulu.

Dewi Lewis, formerly of Cornerhouse, has written extensively about publishing Photo books, and has a book "Publishing Photography" on the subject. It's an essential read before anyone begins going down the avenue of getting their work published.

Ian

I'd be happy to. I will most definitely admit I am still a student in this field and my knowledge, overall, isn't as much as some of you. This is why I've retained the services of Lodima Press when needed and why clients can choose the option of working with Lodima to help them from as much or as little of the book as they'd like. With Michael's help and a few books where I've had a chance to see this all in process, I will definitely receive an education. Where I come in, specifically, is being able to acquire the deals with design, paper, binding, printing, etc. and handle the other details of the book (ISBN, barcodes, etc.).

I think that there will be three types of people who will want to take advantage of the service we offer:

1: Someone who knows what they want, the order they want the photographs sequenced in, the size, paper, etc. of the book and just wants to take advantage of the lower cost of printing and advertising. This is someone who has most likely published books before. They will require little to no help.

2: Someone who is like #1, but needs some refinement. Perhaps some help in sequencing of the photographs in the book, perhaps some help with marketing, etc. This is where we offer the services of someone who lives and breathes this stuff, where we use the services of Lodima Press. After an initial conversation with Michael, the customer will then have a good idea of what they want to do and come back to us with that idea. The customer will then work with Michael on every single detail of that book, from cover to cover. As far editing of text goes, I have those resources.

3: Someone who has an idea of what they want, but doesn't have a specific idea of the sequence of their photographs, whether they want them reproduced in tritone, quadtone or what. This is, again, someone who will work with Lodima Press but require more time and more attention.

Layout and design of photography is something we do every day here. Handling of specific images is something handled by the printer as far as scanning, or digital optimization of files.

After the book is complete, we then offer them a standard marketing and advertising package, which is included in the final price. This includes:

A year of full page 4C ads inside of FOCUS
A standard size (6 x 4.25) direct mail card as an outsert (in between the magazine and the pollybag) sent to every single one of Focus Magazine's subscribers after the book is published
A press release sent to over 3,500 Focus Magazine newsletter subscribers announcing the book.
A free listing on a soon-to-be-launched online bookstore photobookconnoisseur.net
A free listing on amazon.com

After we've published a few books, we will offer other marketing and advertising packages to our clients where we can do a co-op advertising for all of the books we've publishshed. Unfortunately, the biggest resource I was going to use for this, PhotoEye Magazine, has ceased publishing the print version of their magazine and will now only publish online -- and they were not very clear with me as to when that will be. But there are a number of other great magazines out there that I can advertise in. We will also be able to offer our clients the opportunity not only to sell their book we published, but also their work at Photo LA and other upcoming photography art fairs where we can obtain a booth.

IanG
12-Mar-2008, 01:29
Fair comments David, but just a couple of points. First all the marketing is through Focus magazine, that may very well not be the correct target audience for a particular book. Things like Amazon and listings on other websites are very easy and most photographers would probably be best doing this for themselves.

Your help options like using Michael Smith/Lodima Press would probably be inappropriate in many cases, due to the higher costs involved and far more importantly being at the wrong level of expertise.

Ian

David Spivak-Focus Magazine
12-Mar-2008, 22:00
Fair comments David, but just a couple of points. First all the marketing is through Focus magazine, that may very well not be the correct target audience for a particular book. Things like Amazon and listings on other websites are very easy and most photographers would probably be best doing this for themselves.

Your help options like using Michael Smith/Lodima Press would probably be inappropriate in many cases, due to the higher costs involved and far more importantly being at the wrong level of expertise.

Ian

I appreciate your comments, Ian. I disagree with them, but I respect your opinion. I'm not 100% sure what being at the "wrong level of expertise" means. I cannot comment on how much a book would cost, you'd have to come to me and give me specifics and I wouldn't do that in public. Let's just say that I've priced about 3 or 4 of the most popular book sizes, added in the cost of Lodima Press, added in the cost of having to scan every single print or optimize the digital prints, added in every single cost possible and I'm close to $10,000 less expensive than your other high-end printers and they don't throw everything in that I am.

I look forward to starting this venture. We've already had some really great inquiries and I can't wait for more. We're going to find that perfect first project to work on real soon and I have to admit feeling like a kid in a candy store looking at all of the opportunity around.

j.e.simmons
13-Mar-2008, 05:06
As I read this, you are offering to be what is called vanity press in the book publishing industry. The cost of publication would be borne by the photographer? Am I correct in this?

There is nothing wrong with this business model, but based on the confusion you've had in the past with submissions to your magazine, I would think it would be good for you to make this clear.
juan

David Spivak-Focus Magazine
13-Mar-2008, 07:53
As I read this, you are offering to be what is called vanity press in the book publishing industry. The cost of publication would be borne by the photographer? Am I correct in this?

There is nothing wrong with this business model, but based on the confusion you've had in the past with submissions to your magazine, I would think it would be good for you to make this clear.
juan

I think this has been made perfectly clear through numerous threads and is very clear on the website.

Ted Stoddard
16-Mar-2008, 07:54
I would have to agree to some but not all comments here when you go to the website you usually can make the page bigger to me its a little annoying for me but not a big deal... I would love to see what they get published and how it sells before I would even consider publishing a book with them but it doesn't mean I will never do it you have to see other books published by them before making a comment on the printing... I would love to submit for a book but the cost is my concern 10g is alot to have a book published than what happens when or if it doesnt sell... You basically end up with a 10G book door stop... definitely not a good way to sell your work in my opinion...

David Spivak-Focus Magazine
22-Mar-2008, 14:20
The link opens on one page and I have to click to get to another page and that one has small type and the page can't be enlarged so the type is big enough to read.

So, I closed it rather than have to futz around with computer screen settings.

I'm trying to get my website designer to create an html version of the website so it'll be easier for some people. Right now he's busy with the new online bookstore and revamping of two other sites I have... the man only has so much time. The idea, though is the same and there isn't much more information that the website can provide for you that I haven't already provided here. The website does not, like Lulu or some other self publishing services, give quotes on quantity of books. I do, however and I give them really quick -- usually within 24 hours if I already have the specs on hand.

David Spivak-Focus Magazine
22-Mar-2008, 14:21
I would have to agree to some but not all comments here when you go to the website you usually can make the page bigger to me its a little annoying for me but not a big deal... I would love to see what they get published and how it sells before I would even consider publishing a book with them but it doesn't mean I will never do it you have to see other books published by them before making a comment on the printing... I would love to submit for a book but the cost is my concern 10g is alot to have a book published than what happens when or if it doesnt sell... You basically end up with a 10G book door stop... definitely not a good way to sell your work in my opinion...

I would be happy to ask my printer to send samples of books printed on his press to anyone who is interested in working with us. Feel free to send me a private PM.

David Spivak-Focus Magazine
22-Mar-2008, 14:28
Still can't get the page to show larger on the computer screen.

But, why not offer an 'early discout' for the first 5 or so who sign up to do a book? As you said, you are just learning how to do this so why do those who are going to provide you with an education and learning experience need to pay full freight?

Put out some first and let others see a first class job and then raise the price to the full amount.

You have a good idea, Dakotah. The first 5 photographers from this or any other forum *cough*TRADITIONALPHOTOGRAPHER.NET*cough* that wind up publishing a book with us will receive a hefty discount on our services and still receive an amazing quality book with all of the services previously mentioned.