After last minute visits to the NA and having worked through several additional books for more information about the planning of the Battle of the Somme, the book is nearly ready to go to print. A visit to the IWM Photo Library was very useful and I have ten prints on order. The cost of a 7"x5" print is a not unreasonable £5.70 and I hope to get them later this week (in spite of a glitch in processing the credit card order!). I also had it confirmed that for print runs below 1,000 the IWM does not levy a copyright charge which is useful. Once they have the Negative nos for the prints needed they will issue a copyright waiver. As I don't plan to print more than 200 copies I am well within the limit.
I have also now downloaded a pdf program (not Acrobat!) which seems very good at producing accurate pdf files which is the format preferred by the printers. The pdf program I am trying is called pdffactory and is available through their web site www.pdffactory.com and seems reasonably priced, especially compared to Acrobat which seems to get a lot of bad press.
Last things to be done are the final maps and then correcting and updating the indexing which is a time consuming process even if using a concordance file. So, the plan is to have the book finished by the end of the month. Designing the cover artwork will be the next thing to do and I really have no idea what this will consist of yet.
Next project then is the promotional web site which is planned but not yet built. I used a site called www.uk.hosting-review.com for information on which internet service provider to use and, at the moment, the choice is between Fasthosts and 1&1 which seem to offer a huge amount of space, bandwidth and many useful extras in the form of scripts for all sorts of things. Looks like the site will cost about £100 a year which I will have to factor into the total costs of the project. To date these are (ignoring the costs of travel, etc.):
£550 per 100 soft back books of c. 450 pages
£58 for IWM photos
£100/annum web site
I cannot guess at the amount of money I have spent over the years getting material copied at the NA but it must be £200+ plus another £50 at the IWM. Overall, costs look like about £1000 which, depending on how I price the book (e.g. between £15 and £20) means I need to sell 50-70 to break even. Not too bothered if this happens as I really just fancy the idea of having a properly printed and bound copy of the work that it has taken me over six years to produce. Vanity of vanities; all is vanity!
Oh well, onwards and upwards!