This afternoon Chielamangus’ AMONG THESE MATES went to the printer! I am elated because we went through 4 or more proofings. It’s never my desire to allow a bad product. As I wrote some where, I had spent $1200 on a book where my keyliner (paste-up person) got the chapters out of order. It went into the dumpster. I lost my booty on that book.
So it was submitted, hopefully just in time, because that printer has downtime maintenance tomorrow.
The whole idea of this book written by Chielamangus was a parody of the Australian chess scene in the 1930s, written under that pseudonym by CJS Purdy. When you have the “right” mood going for you, it is hilarious. But for me to really dig it took several readings to fill in the blanks.
In one story Purdy had just hired a new publicity director to boost the number of subscribers for Purdy’s Australasian Chess Review and this nitwit, after his marketing efforts have flopped, found that the magazine had the SAME number of subscribers it already had when that guy (Roosevelt T. Schnapper) came on board. Clearly, nothing but an outrageous expense! And the Editor (Purdy) lets him have it. Sort of like Michael Caine flipping out as the director in the movie “Noises Off.”
There are a variety of stories, basically no two alike. Purdy even allows for the possibility that not everyone will like every story in the book but if by chance someone does (!), he wants that sentiment sent to him on a postcard where he will have it framed and put on his wall.
Inside the book are many positive references to the humor and stories in this book by various newspapers around the world that publish chess stuff and of course, even some of them are faked!
I haven’t given the printer the number to be printed yet until I know the reaction from customers for it. It’s going to be an extremely limited edition (100-200 copies) at $34.95 (plus S&H, $5 in the USA and $12.00 to other parts of the world) each because in general chess people have a really lackadaisical attitude about paying anything for chess literature but are willing to pay more for it 5 years later when it is no longer available!!
One publisher is doing a 2 volume book by Mark Dvoretsky in hardcover for $80-$85 (ridiculous even if autographed–if it taught you how to win almost every game of chess you played, then maybe.) If one person in 1000 (in the USA) knew that Magnus Carlsen was the world chess champion, imagine how many would know who Mark Dvoretsky was? (1 in a million?) The Big D has written a lot of books, some he never got paid for writing (Batsford). I’ve seen the picture of Dvoretsky signing for 500 numbered frontispiece copies and he doesn’t look all that happy about it (Though I wish him well).
I can’t do that with Purdy, I think he would resent being taken from a better place and being returned to here!
Anyway, there is a good chance I will have the books about Sept. 22. My Purdy fans (and fanatics) will mostly enjoy this. I have no plans for doing a reprint. It will look nice, the cover is in color. The book runs about 110 pages or so. Clean type, everything well-spaced and proofed. MY BIG thanks for the splendid proofing job goes to my good friend Phil Wong in Chicago.
Another good friend, Steve Schooley, sent a picture of Carol and myself sitting at a big sales table from the Aug. 16th Iowa Open even in Coralville thanks to an invite from another friend, Mark Capron. I wish you could see how we presented the books and the Grand Turk on the table. I’ve been other places where the reseller would stand the books on end, spine up, where the covers couldn’t be seen. I remember a competitor doing this in Nebraska (Lincoln?) years ago. My tables “clocked” him. He told me how well he did. That surprised me he would do that but I think he was trying to shock me. He almost turned white when I said, “Hope that was satisfactory for you!” We outsold him like 3 or 4 to 1.
Anyway, that’s enough for today. Carlsen signed on for the world championship against Anand with threats from FIDE if he didn’t (isn’t it nice when you “know” the crooks at FIDE don’t have your back?)!
You can pre-order the new book AMONG THESE MATES by contacting me at firstname.lastname@example.org That way you can be sure you will get one. My office is only so big and I don’t store new books in my basement so I don’t “over order.”
Take care chess guys.
Bob the “Butler did it” guy.