Publishing 101 or setting the price for the book

I am setting up a new price for A Guide to Organic Chemistry Mechanisms. The book hasn’t been selling very well and there are other books mechanism books that are less. Let me go backwards through this. Read More...


Well, I knew I wouldn't be a big blogger. Let me update you on what has been happening (or not). In some ways, I too wonder, what the heck I have been doing.

I have been answering a lot of student questions on various web forums. This included my own. An additional word about this. My webforum was becoming heavily spammed and I wanted to cure that. I was looking for some phpBB hack that I could use. Long story short, my ISP was un-helpful, I changed my forum software twice and now operate with punBB. It hasn't been spammed yet and future is to install some hacks to moderate forum and block spammers.

Answering questions tells me two things. One, it tells me the kinds of questions or problems that students are having ... Read More...

Changes to AGOCM

This is what is on my mind. I was going back over the chapters and writing notes for changes, new reactions, errors, and notes that might be made.

One, in order to keep the changes orderly for owners of the book, I am going to create an update that contain only the changes. This will involve new reactions, changes to reactions, and errors corrected.

Two, I need to decide how many notes I am going to include. The book was supposed to be a workbook. It was never supposed to be an organic chemistry textbook. Read More...

Update of A Guide to Organic Chemistry Mechanisms

I had created Adobe Acrobat files in December for each chapter of TLOC. When I did so, my objective was to put them in proper order and to protect them. I had begun to wonder why many people have examined the files for a few minutes and then moved on. Showing them the book is the best I can do. Why aren't they printing any pages? You really can't learn organic just be looking at a few problems. You have to do them. I don't see how people can do them without printing them.

So, tried my own site. I clicked on a page, but it wouldn't do anything. It wouldn't start Adobe Reader or anything. I went to Windows XP and it opened fine after entering my password as expected. I printed a page. Adobe Document Center logged the printing. This confirms that people are just looking at pages without doing any arrow pushing. Read More...

Publishing objective

      Nassau Street in Princeton
I stopped at the Princeton University bookstore. This is the reality they expressed. They only order books through the major distributors. If I want my book accessible on a large scale, I must register with one of these distributors. I had planned this, but this note makes it rather more imperative than I otherwise thought.
I have been experimenting with Adobe InDesign. I have a bit of a learning curve for using it, but I also have a problem with reformatting the chemistry files. InDesign requires an additional step. In contemplating how the book will appear, I need to determine the best way to do this. I have numerous smaller files in MS Word that print directly. This method was good because MS Word took care of some of the accounting, formatting, etc. To the negative, it was also true that MS Word limited some aspects of formatting. InDesign is different and can provide different solutions to those problems.

A third option is to use iWork Pages. Pages is in between MS Word and InDesign. It has a number of formatting options similar to InDesign and is more compatible with the ChemDraw files without creating an intermediary structure.

I'm currently experimenting.

Make individual chapter pdf files available for A Guide to Organic Chemistry Mechanisms

   Bridge over Millstone River in Kingston
Slowly, I am learning. I was experimenting with the Adobe Document Center yesterday. I can control the .pdf files individually. That is, I can specify who can see and print each file. That means that I can make individual chapter files available. So, anyone interested, look for the ability to access an individual chapter real soon now.

The marketing advice I found on the net suggests that I also start advertising on Google in addition to or rather than Yahoo. That, and to sign on with Lightning Sources, Inc., re-write the book in InDesign, possibly change page sizes (??), increase my organic forum contributions, I guess my work is cut out for me.

Update of A Guide to Organic Chemistry Mechanisms

I think I am arriving at acceptable web content. I did receive a question about putting some sample pages up. I had started doing that around Christmas, but I had wanted a more sophisticated way of doing it than just a string of pages. Read More...