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Section 4.1: Automotive Reference
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4.1Automotive Reference
4.1.1Book Overview
4.1.2Book History
4.1.3Book Collector Feedback
4.1.4Book Preview
4.1.5Gift Specifications
 Page Notes

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4.1   Automotive Reference

Reference Book:
Automotive Reference

A New Approach To The World of Auto/Related Information
2002 Collector Edition


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4.1.1   Book Overview

Resurrection of a Great Out-of-Print Classic

The book first appeared in March 1987. It wasn't fancy. There were no illustrations, except for the book cover. Size was kept manageable (8.5x11 inches, 470 pages, 1 inch thick) by using a somewhat small font size.

Librarians, readers, and book reviewers quickly discovered an immense collection of carefully and uniquely organized automotive knowledge - found no where else (to this day). An automotive reference book like no other.

Important book reviewers evaluated the publication including: major USA car manufacturer VPs, auto journalists, editors, librarians, car owners, and truck drivers. They expressed positive and enthusiastic opinions. Libraries were particularly fond of the book.

In time, thousands of libraries (USA and Canadian) adopted it. Several thousand people from all walks of life did as well. Most libraries catalogued the publication as a reference book, allowing it to only be used in the library. This frustrated numerous library patrons. Many relented and bought their own copy. According to the author, he never got a single complaint from a customer or library. They all believed it was money well spent (modest price).

The closest books today are: half the size, less half the number of pages, and don't even begin to cover the subject like this timeless classic does. Truly one-of-a-kind.

Interesting Side Notes

China Copyright Agency: In the late 1980s, China's copyright agency expressed interest in buying the reprint rights to the book. Those rights were not granted.

Print Version: The print version (1987 Hardcover Library Edition; ISBN 0-937591-01-7; $49.95) has been out of print since 1991.

A Timeless Classic Ressurected ...

In a quiet place,
a forgotten tome rested.
Watching and waiting.
For years.

To return.
But, only - when the time was right ...

Time and technology marched forward.
Electronic books emerged.

was now possible.
But, only if the look was preserved .. as is.

this trusted old friend
was ushered back to a rightful place,
before individuals who choose their written words carefully ...

-- author of, Automotive Reference

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4.1.2   Book History

Self-Publishing. For the author, this was the only acceptable path. He wanted complete control of the book creation and marketing process. The elements of self-publishing chosen by the author included: researching and writing the book, acquiring the necessary book production equipment, producing print runs of book pages, producing screen print runs of the book covers, assembing the various book parts into hard and softcover books as orders arrived, getting book reviews, marketing the books, and processing book orders. As you will learn, this approach has its strengths and weaknesses.

Writing The Book. The book was conceived in 1984. It took the author over one year, full time, to write it. More than once, he took a brief break to get some air and perspective. Refreshed, he returned to the task at hand. After six months of writing, he showed the manuscript to a few people. They thought it was complete enough. But, the author did not. So, the writing continued. For another six months. The finish line for the first edition was reached almost 13 months after the marathon event began.

Making The Book. For the author, writing was not enough. He wanted to personally create each book by hand. The book's large size (8.5x11) and numerous pages (470) made it a challenge to produce. Pages were printed on a small printing press. Pages were organized by hand, and on a large rotary collator. Book covers were screen printed on paper and cloth, then glued to backing materials. Finally, individual book parts were assembled to make the final desired hardcover and softcover books.

Marketing The Book. Marketing was next. Writing and book production were both time consuming, but marketing ended up being a big challenge for one person. For maximum efficiency, the book was promoted primarily in one market, the libraries. This approach was ultimately successful, because of: good book reviews, an identified knowledge gap in many libraries, a reasonable price, and the option of libraries being able to order a hardcover or softcover edition.

Multiple Book Print Runs. The book went through 3 printings before going out of print, in 1988. Hardcover and softcover editions were available through all 3 printings. Unusual for a new book.

Going Out Of Print. In the end, the book's success made it difficult to juggle the various elements of self-publishing. It was a challenge: keeping them in sequence, alloting enough time for each, preventing overlaps, and making time for future writing projects. A future edition was planned, but the whole process needed to be streamlined. So, the book languished, gathered dust on its lonely shelf, and faded into the mists of time. It waited and waited for some miracle to bring it back to life.

Persistence of Book Purchasers. After the book went out of print, prospective book owners were persistent. They kept contacting the publisher. Some wanted to get a copy. Others wanted to know when the next edition would be out.

The March of Time. Time moved on. Interest in the book remained.

Ebook Technology Emerges. The author felt a more productive book technology was needed before he would consider re-printing the book. Ebooks (electronic books) appeared, allowing an entire book to be stored in one or more computer files, and viewed with a computer. Such books could contain: text, video, audio, and images. Putting multimedia information into a regular printed book, beyond text and images, was not possible. Ebooks offered a whole new reading and learning experience. Another advantages was their compact size. Hundreds of ebooks could be placed on just one CD-ROM.

Ebook Technology Resurrects Automotive Reference. Ebooks streamlined and solved many of the production problems mentioned previously. In the summer of 2001, the author concluded ebook technology had sufficiently matured. He decided it was time to resurrect this old friend. He began by creating an electronic edition of the 1987 print edition with one guiding principle:


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4.1.3   Book Collector Feedback

In today's Book Collector circles,
original copies of the book's 1987 softcover and library hardcover editions ($49.95 price)
are valued up to $100.

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4.1.4   Book Preview

To preview several different parts of the book: Click Here

The book preview provides a glimpse
into a vast storehouse of automotive knowledge.
If you're tired - of automobiles ruling your life and pocketbook,
if you want to master them,
you'll know what to do.


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4.1.5   Gift Specifications

Gift ID: 1004-1
Gift Type: Reference Book
Gift Description: Automotive Reference, A New Approach To The World of Auto/Related Information. 2002 Collector Edition (HTML compiled ebook format). ISBN 0-937591-04-1
Gift Value: $30
Gift Donation Amount: See Mine Donation-Gift Form
Gift Acquisition: To acquire this gift: see Mine Donation-Gift Form
Gift Delivery: Gift(s) can be delivered online or offline. See Mine Donation-Gift Form for complete details.
Gift Copyright: January 2002. All Rights Reserved.
Gift Availability: After January 02, 2002
Gift Format: HTML executable file
Gift Use Requirements: Windows 95 or greater. IE4.0 or greater on computer.
Gift Guarantee: See Mine Donation-Gift Form
Gift Details:
[1][Replica]: Of the March 1987 Library Hardcover Edition (in ebook format).
[2][Author-Approved Format]: Carefully-formatted author-approved reprint of the original classic.
[3][Personalized/Numbered Copy]: Each book is individually prepared, personalized, and numbered. You know the book belongs only to you.
[4][Unique Ebook Philosophy]: Author and publisher's unique views on ebooks provide extra value, flexibility, and enjoyment for the reader. Details.

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