Your Dissertation Isn’t a Book—But It Can Be

Credit where credit is due: much of this is based of a spiel from Bigbossman to grad students attracted by the promise of free food and cheap books.  By the way, locusts descending on a ripe field have nothing on a bunch of grad students who have heard that there are $3 books.  Also, a lot of it I may have discussed already; however, there were a few new things, and some points of discussion worth, well, discussing.

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Books! Books! Books!

CUA Press is having a book sale!  Those of you who are in the DC area and have any interest at all in anything liberal arts will probably want to come to this.  None of us are exactly sure what we’ll be selling, but seeing as every press collects a certain number of random books between remaindering, publicity copies that never get sent, and just general who-knows-how, we’ll have something interesting.

Best part: nothing’s over $10, most things are $2 or $3.  Even that critical edition of Scotus.

The intern wants it gone.  The philosopher wants to bring a truck and buy half of it.  I’m not sure these are competing desires.

The Semi-Official Flyer, for those who might want to attend.  It’s this Thursday, 29 March, from noon to 3:30 or so.  No, we won’t let you come early and horde books.  Yes, this is a problem when you combine grad students and cheap books.  I may have to be a Burly Goon and repurpose that Scotus volume . . .

Why the Intern Liked Your Book

Okay, enough with the snark, it’s been done already.  I’m pretty sure a goodly number of the people who read this and aren’t looking for insightful commentary on Yves Klein’s monochromes (which accounts for a shocking amount of the traffic ’round these here parts) will have to publish academic books at some part of their tenured lives.  What follows is a short list of things, from my standpoint as The First Person Who Reads Your Proposal, that you might want to know. Continue reading

Your Book Will Not Sell

Another Great Authorial Self-Delusion popped: if you’re publishing with an academic press, don’t expect to get rich from it.  Heck, count yourself lucky if your book doesn’t get remaindered.

Yes, fine, you’ve seen the numbers, you get it, your contract offers you royalties of 5-10% on every sale—but academic books are expensive, right?  That money has to add up!
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Naming Roses

I alluded to it a bit in my last Google Penance post, but it’s time to address the semiotic nastiness directly: why bother with symbols when you could use names?  If you’ve got all those attributes of saints to remember and recognize from across a nave—assuming, of course, you’re not looking at some local bishop-saint, who looks like every other local bishop-saint—why not just write the names somewhere nearby? Continue reading