IBPA Independent Magazine – Article Archive

Article Archive

While IBPA members receive IBPA Independent magazine during the month of publication, we’re happy to post a limited selection of each issue’s articles below 3-4 months after publication.

IBPA members requested easier access to information from IBPA Independent magazine. We’re happy to help! Using the search functionality below, you can search by Category, Author, Article Tag, or a specific Category-plus-Author combo. If that’s not enough, the “Search Articles” box will conduct a full text search of every article in the IBPA Independent database. If you have any trouble using the new search below, please call the IBPA office at 310-546-1818.

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Independent Articles
Paula E. Langguth, Pellingham Casper Communication, May 1997
Five Tips for Improving Your Business »

(1) Have an 800#. You can get one very cheaply through your long distance carrier. Sprint provides mine, and it costs $10 a month, plus the cost of calls that come in. It’s set up as a Wats line, so it’s very inexpensive. I highly recommend Sprint because of their Free Friday campaign good through …

Janis Paris, May 1997
How to Hire an Indexer »

Getting Started in the Hiring Process The nice thing about hiring an indexer is that you can ask for a work sample and verify that the caliber of the index matches your needs. Of course, if the person you are considering has a list of publications a mile long from highly regarded establishments (especially if …

Jeffrey Dobkin, May 1997
Getting Your Press Release into Print »

I seldom recommend an ad campaign until a press release has tested the media, and has proven that we can get a qualified response from the target audience. We don’t always get in with our press releases, but we always try. On the flip side, for industrial marketing, an ad is the logical conclusion to …

Ken Lee, Michael Wiese Productions , May 1997
Notes from the Frankfurt Book Fair, Part II »

In my last article, I reviewed key tips on pre-planning your trip to the Frankfurt Book Fair. In this article, I’ll review more tips on making your trip to Frankfurt as productive as possible. Ordnung Ist Das Halbe Leben (Order is Half of Life) When you visit Frankfurt, you’ll understand exactly what this old German …

Moira Allen, May 1997
Confessions of a Small-Town Publisher »

“Hello… Ah… I wanted to know… Ah… Do you publish poetry?” Every so often, a poetry class is offered at one of the local colleges. I have yet to find out where, or whose class it is — but when I do, I think I’ll have a few words with the instructor. I always know …

Curt Matthews, IPG/Chicago Review Press, May 1997
What about the Internet? »

Will the Internet radically change the book business, not to speak of civilization as we know it? Not quite yet, in my opinion. The Growing Internet Marketplace Here are some reasons why I may be dead wrong in my previous statement. Amazon (the cyberspace bookstore) continues to grow at the rate of 25% a month, …

Jan Nathan, Executive Director, April 1997
What Can I Do About Marketing? »

Many times I hear this question when a publisher calls to try to understand why his or her title has gotten onto the shelves of a certain market (bookstore, gift shop, major chain) but isn’t selling. When asked what type of action plan they had in place before getting it into these retail outlets, I …

Mary Westheimer, PMA Internet Chairperson, BookZo, April 1997
Going Online at PMA »

THE AUTHOR QUESTIONNAIRE, which was mentioned in Curt Matthews’s January newsletter article, is generating a lot of interest on the PMA Website athttp://www.pma-online.org these days (find the form itself athttp://www.pma-online.org/author.html). The actual document, which is used at Matthews’s Chicago Review Press, is printable from the screen. It came in handy recently when one of the …

Article originally appeared in Thomson-Shore's new, April 1997
Ideas on Individual Book Fulfillment »

Individual book fulfillment is not something we do much of but it is something our customers ask about. So, after some customer requests that we do an article on it, I made some calls to a couple very small publishers who do their own individual book fulfillment, a mailing house that primarily does journal fulfillment, …

Jeffrey Dobkin, April 1997
“We Tried Direct Mail and it Didn’t Work!” »

When any of my clients tell me they’ve tried direct mail and it didn’t work for them, I always ask, “What exactly was that campaign?” The kind of response I usually get? “We mailed to our top twenty-five prospects, and none of them bought anything! Damn, they were our best prospects too.” I then take …

Curt Matthews, IPG/Chicago Review Press, April 1997
Advice for the Accounting Impaired »

Few if any of us decided to become publishers because we loved accounting. It’s books we like, and accounting is just a necessary evil. But how much of this evil is really necessary? At Least Know the Basics First a disclaimer: I am a recovering academic and have never had any formal business training of …

Robert C. Brenner, M.S.E.E., M.S.S.M., April 1997
Personal Observations about the PMA Listserv (Why You Should Be a Part of This Forum) »

For the past five months, I’ve been a member of PMA’s online forum, the listserv. When I first “subscribed,” I was unsure what to expect. Although I’ve been in publishing for 10 years, I’m new to online activities, especially those related to e-mail and the World Wide Web. I guess I’m one of those who …

Robert Goodman, SilverCat, March 1997
Thoughts on Distributor Contracts »

The contract is the defining document of most publisher-vendor relationships. Written by the vendor, the boilerplate contracts generally favor the vendor’s perspectives and interests. All of these boilerplates are subject to revision, and negotiation should be undertaken before the contract is signed. Almost everything in a proposed contract is negotiable. Still, as Ivan Hoffman reminds …

Dr. Robert Sullivan, Author & Publisher, March 1997
Libraries — The “Perfect” Customer »

Regardless of whether you are working with a large publisher or a small press, every author should know that to make their book successful (that is, to sell a LOT of books) requires a continued involvement in the promotion and marketing of the book. Your distributor will probably take care of”traditional” bookstore sales (to the …

Jan Nathan, PMA Executive Director, March 1997
Small Press Week: March 24-30, 1997 »

Through a grass roots effort, we know that we can deliver the story of the independent press throughout the country. The theme of Small Press Week 1997 is “Hot Off the Press! Titles from Independent Publishers Offer a Pizzeria for the Mind.” The Small Press Center in New York and PMA have joined forces to …

John McCabe, author of Surgery Electives: What to , March 1997
The Interview From Hell! »

Today I was interviewed for a LIVE BROADCAST on a New York City radio show. Here’s how it went. As I wait to be interviewed, I hear them introduce the guest before me. Then all of a sudden that guest is connected to my phone line and not to the radio interviewer and we are …

Curt Matthews, IPG/Chicago Review Press, March 1997
What Should Things Cost? »

I am going to list here some prices that my publishing company has paid for various book-related goods and services during the last year or so. We all worry about being taken to the cleaners when we need to work with outside suppliers. My hope is that you can match some of these numbers with …

Ken Lee, Michael Wiese Productions , March 1997
A Journey Down the Amazon.com River »

In a year filled with frustrating statistics for the publishing industry (huge returns, low margins, another book by Howard Stern), a Seattle-based company has guided the book industry down an unknown path with an eclectic mixture of high-tech wizardry, marketing savvy, and a genuine passion for books. For those who haven’t heard yet, here are …

W. Paul Coates, February 1997
The Challenge of Publishing On Demand »

Last year, Black Classic Press took a giant leap of faith. We acquired an On Demand Publishing system and began shifting our production methods in order to take advantage of supposed lower inventory costs, less waste, and more specialized production of our books. A little background. Black Classic Press was founded in 1978 with the …

Jan Nathan, February 1997
Introducing Nancy & Don Tubesing Whole Person Associates/Pfeifer-Hamilton Publishers »

In an effort to assist PMA members in learning some of the tricks of the trade used by surviving publishing companies, I have decided to interview PMA members and share some of their thoughts, failures, and successes with you. Yes, even the successful ones have failures along the way. This month, we’re introducing two companies …

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