Archive for December, 2011

2011 in review

December 31, 2011

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 3,100 times in 2011. If it were a cable car, it would take about 52 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.


The Real Kalmbach

December 18, 2011

Clueless or greedy? That’s the question for you to answer if you follow their latest foray into digital media.

So, I get an email last Tuesday promoting their digital versions of their books available for purchase and downloading. The downloads can be read using the Zinio reader. I looked around to see what might interest me. It was not a pleasant experience. Whoever designed the site doesn’t know anything about shopping on the web. I found a book on steam locomotives but I had to practically order it to find a price. But I looked around until I found the right page and the price of $18.95.

Now it happened that my wife, a published author, was in the dining room with her three critique partners — all published writers of women’s fiction. They meet weekly to review each other’s manuscripts. I asked how much their books sell for in digital versions on Amazon. They responded with a range of $7.99 to $9.99 — for books that sell for around $29.99 as hard covers. When you remove printing and binding, warehousing and shipping plus returns, you can make a lot of profits with digital downloads while substantially reducing the cost to the customer.

When I reported that Kalmbach is charging the same price for a downloaded version as the printed version I set of wails of laughter at the stupidity of this marketing tactic.

Does Kalmbach think we’re stupid? Evidently so. It’s time to support the ascendency of a competitive magazine for model railroading. If Railroad Model Craftsman could get a new art director it just might be up to the challenge.