Sunday, February 23, 2014

I will probably be closing my storefront soon...

Wait-wait-wait! Before you start freaking out, that doesn't mean my print offerings will be going away.

Long story short. I have been involved with an ongoing "battle" with for almost a month now, regarding a "less than satisfactory" product order I received (10 damn copies of my own titles, no less!!!!). I won't get into the details, and will say nothing more than this... I believe that one less-than-stellar vendor doesn't realize his default settings on his printer are "off" (which is adding inside gutter margin, and forcing the book to trim WAY too close to the copy in the outside margins). Also, this vendor is making obvious production "shortcuts" (e.g., when you print a heavy-as-hell film/UV style cover stock, you HAVE to score it if you want the product to fold well). Problem is, and I'm probably the only one complaining about this vendor (because many people getting books just don't know better). The bigger problem is this- because farms out to whichever vendor claims the order, there is no quality control.

On a related side note, many of you may have noticed my absence in posting over the last couple of weeks. I've been finishing up a big pro-bono project for my wife's school auction. BUT THERE IS A HUGE SILVER LINING!!! The local resource I had print the auction program (as a digital job in a relatively low-quantity run) did a GREAT job with it! AND AT A STELLAR PRICE!!! (Sorry for all the caps here, but I'm terribly excited).

So here's the long-and-short of my situation...

Everyone's incredible reaction to the d30 Sandbox Companion, as well as revived interest in the d30 DM Companion has given me a little bit of working capital. This working capital, as well as my recent discovery of a great local digital printing source will allow me to print and ship my own books. Unfortunately, right now, this shipping will be limited to continental US (with the possibility of shipping to Alaska and Hawaii via flat rate envelopes). More importantly, because I'll be getting a SERIOUS price-break on the printing (since I'm printing in quantity and not paying Lulu's awful markups) I think I can actually sell the book including shipping for the prices they are currently selling on (which doesn't include shipping)... and still be able to offer the occasional sale price! More importantly, I will personally see each copy that ships; if it's a faulty product, it won't ship. Simple as that.

I've already started setting up my Square storefront. (I signed up with Square to be able to take credit cards when I sell at cons.) The products are already entered. I just need to set up a new bank account for record keeping purposes, and hope that completed by end-of-week. Then it will take a couple of weeks to get some inventory printed, and my shipping materials gathered and set up. If all goes as planned, I will transition sales from to my personal storefront in about 2-3 weeks.

In the meantime, my products will still be offered through, but if you are reading this and thinking about buying a print copy, I suggest you try to wait for a few weeks.

Thanks for your patience during this process.

BTW, here's a pic of the auction program...
(my photo does not do justice to how good the cover really looks)

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