December 15, 2008

RPG Anthology Weekly Update

Work continues on the Anthology of Roleplaying Game Blogs. As of today I have received over 350 reviews from the seven Anthology Reviewers who, by all accounts, are busting their tails getting these reviews done before the end of the month. There were 135 nominations made to the Anthology, and now every nomination has received at least one review at this point.

On the art front - My open-call for volunteer Anthology Artists also had a bigger than expected response. Seventeen artists signed up within the first two days after the announcement, and I'm happy to report that I've selected four of them to help with the Anthology. Each of these artists are uniquely talented and have very diverse styles. Moreover, as best as i can tell, they are also all fans of RPG blogging community so there's a second level of connection as well. Please join me in thanking them for offering to help! The four artists are listed below along with links to their online galleries:
Currently they are working on sketches of border designs and page numbering graphics while we wait for the reviews to be completed. Also, I've asked them to sketch concepts for the cover of the book - so hopefully I'll have some to show the community soon. Once the reviews are done, the artists will have the opportunity to work in earnest on interior artwork for the book. It should be exciting to see what comes out it.

On the funding front - earlier in the week I announce a T-shirt fund raiser to help raise the funds needed to provide free copies of the book to the volunteers, contributing authors, and artists. Unfortunately, no one has bought one yet (can you say "flop"?) but I have received requests from three people regarding straight out sponsorship of the project or advertising (two people) within the book - both of which I am open to. My goal is to raise about $600 to cover the costs of these free books, so if you are feeling generous during this holiday season please consider being an Anthology Sponsor by donating to the project using PayPal.

That's about it for now. Have a great day!



  1. Have you consulted with someone who knows publishing to make sure the $600 is well spent?

  2. Well, all $600 will be spent on the publishing costs (zero markup) of the comp' books I intend on sending to the volunteers, artists, and contributing authors. There's a quite a lengthy discussion about this, and many other topics, over at Open Game Table. You are welcome to check it out and join in as well (its open to everyone).

  3. OK, here's the relevant thread. It looks like you don't really expect any up-front "printing costs" -- you just decided "I want to print 60 copies, and they're $10 each, so I need $600." So basically a $50 donation buys five copies to send out to the contributors.

  4. That's basically correct. The estimated cost per copy of the book comes in at around $5.50/copy from Lulu (assuming we keep to the 8.5 x 11 perfect bound format and ~100 page count)

    The cost using is about the same. And, of the hand-full of smaller press publishers I've spoken with, the cost of a 100-copy print run is more than that.

    There's also the real benefit of ease of use. I'm donating my own time (about 10 - 20 hours / week at this point) to this project - using a POD service like makes the process of publishing a bit more plug'n play so to speak. This allows me to focus on the design of the project instead of wrangling with publishers and trying to get the book "picked up" by some larger publisher.

  5. May I suggest something ?

    Why not start with a cost-free pdf version ? Even modern pen & paper rpg publishing houses do pdf because it's cheaper.

    Once you start getting attention you can try getting it published by prima.

    There is no way books that size cost 5$ to make. Paperback of 500 pages get sold for less than that, not counting mangas. You just didn't research the proper way to publish a book. For your book size, it should be under 50 cents.

    When you pay a book 10$ at a book store, 5$ goes to the shop, 2.50$ goes to the distributor, 1.25$ goes to the printing shop, arround 1.00 goes to the publisher (pays for the cover artist, employees, and some profits) and 0.25$ finally goes to the actual author

    Anyway, sounds really odd.... and I don't even see why you need more than one author to write an anthology of computer games. There are some pretty col (and free) detailled articles on this on the web

    Hope it's not an attempt at scamming peoples

    by the way, maybe the issue is just you not understanding the way the publishing world work. It seems to me you're trying to get donator to fund what's basically a limited edition fan-made-for-man-magazine of some sort....

    While I was in college we usually self-published thoses with simple xeroxing, leaving only the cost of professional binding (verry innexpensive). We latter learned to do the binding ourselves. It's really not that hard, just ask a pro to explains it to you.

    Paying 5$ for a 100 pages document is totally ridiculous. I didn't even paid that much for my professionally bound master degree thesis.

    Looks to me like it's a scam to buy yourself new games or a ps3/xbox 360. That's about the right price.

    Despite your innocent look, I don't think someone can be a naive as you claim to be about publishing documents. Not with today easy access to xerox machines, scanners, digital camera, lazer printer, binding tools.... nearly anyone and their brother can publish a 100 page book for under 25 cents.


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