Pop culture treasure, high culture trash.

Tuesday, May 31, 2005


Impress-yr-graduate-TA-style comprehensiveness as only the Noo-Yawka can lasso it. I'm all over the Kurt Weil and the Flanders & Swann and the "In My Life" harpsichord solo. But dude--modern urban environments, "often so chaotic, soulless, or ugly"...retreating to yr "comfy chair" to listen to Beethoven and Billie Holiday and avoid "rock clubs...full of kids who make us feel ancient"--if you hold that there target age/class demographic any closer, as Groucho Marx would say, it'll be in back of ya.

Din-din tonight was had in a large castle on the banks of Lake Erie. Inside the castle is a Mexican restaurant. Inside the restaurant are love + ecstasy + six kinds of cheese sauce. Oh El Castillo Grande, with yr chip refills, $5.99 entrees, vegetarian options A-F, waterless moat and stolid clientele--I want to marry and grow old with you.

XKatieX packed up her 7 inches and her parasol tonight and drove off into the sunset. She left behind roller skates, a dust buster, and one very sad pogo princess. She also asked me to be her pen pal and I am hella thrilled to oblige. KBomb, I'm gonna miss you, love.

And now it's time for a breakdown

Whoa, this is sweet like Flavorite ice cream topping. Especially if you're me and a mosquito on the back of the publishing waterbuffalo. And also, um, a big, big dork.

What makes books, especially translations, so expensive?

*Paper costs go up by at least %10 per year. Paper is the largest single cost in printing.

*Books aren't widgets. Each one is a separate product, with different production expenses, different sales potentials and different prices.

*The first printing of a book is often small because there have been no reviews yet and no one knows how well the book will sell. A low first printing means a high unit cost.

*Add on to translated books the cost of translation, another $2,000 to $3,000 on top of the royalties paid the foreign publisher.

*How do the costs break down?

For a book costing $9.95:

$2.98 Printing and production

$3.98 Bookstore commission

$1.49 Distributor commission

$1.00 Royalty to foreign publisher

$ .50 Shipping

$ .50 Publicity

$ .25 Profit

*It's important to realize that publishers must pay all the production costs within thirty days, while distributors and bookstores have ninety days to pay. A successful book sometimes means that that a book must be reprinted before it has made back even its initial costs.

Rebel Rebel

I totally just made this at work. Rock. Somebody stole my pH tester pen and I am peeved. OPEN MESSAGE TO pH PEN THIEF: Hey, dude/lady, it's no big, I'm nice and everything. We can so share. Just put it back on the desk, please.