Accounting for what goes in the library

A big part of what I do at Day Job is a non-profit association’s book marketing: what sells, what doesn’t, what costs us more than it delivers, and other gritty parts of the book trade.

My conclusions, as applied to a denominational or ministry press, are:

  • Cheap books aren’t worth printing.
  • Most people don’t appreciate how much good materials cost to produce.
  • Free materials are also often expensive to produce. This comes through when you see a lot of small church websites.
  • Fair alternative means of paying-for and delivering free materials is a must.
  • Pamphlets are the worst of all world. (Little wonder they’re vanishing in a webbed world.)

None of these rocket science, just the kind of thing you think about when you’re applying Day Job realities (which does pretty well) to a church situation. I’m thinking of the diminished UU World — which I think should be able to pull in better ad revenue — and the role of the UUA website for mission.

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