Dewey B. Larson
755 N.E. Royal Court
Portland, Oregon 97232
Nov. 19, 1983
If we are beginning to get to the point where we can say definitely that we are going ahead with the publication of the new book, it is also time to consider how we should introduce it to the people from whom we are expecting some advance orders. I am enclosing a suggestion as to the text of such an announcement, and I would like to have your comments on it. My thought was that this should be sent to your members and to those who have purchased one or more of my books during the last two or three years. Unfortunately, this list is not very long, because most of the books are sold through dealers, but NPP should be able to dig up a few hundred names. They can begin with the more recent ones, and work backward until the mailings are no longer sufficiently productive.
As I said in my letter of Oct. 16, if the cost estimate for 1000 copies turns out to be in the neighborhood of $12,000 (a figure based on Edwards Bros. prices, which appear to be on the high side), then I think we should set the price at $24or $25 and allow a $5 discount on the pre-publication sales. But if we can get the cost down, I think that the selling price should be lowered. To explain my attitude toward these prices, and the number of copies to be printed, I will say that I intend to see that those who advance funds to help make the initial publication possible get their money back sooner or later, out of my own pocket if there a.re not enough sales. The most important thing from may standpoint, therefore, is to avoid getting stuck with a lot of unsold copies. A few more sales is more important in this respect than an increase in the revenue per book, Much the same considerations apply to the number of copies to be printed. I would prefer to keep this as low as possible -- just enough to give us an average cost per book that can be recovered through sales. If we sell out, and have to order a second printing this is no problem. The extra cost of the smaller printings is not important, once we have the composition out of the way. The prices shown in this draft of the announcement are those that I would suggest if we can get the cost estimate for 1000 copies down to around $8000 in one way or another.