Book arrives, stares at me from the next room...

Dick Richards of Richard's Publishing in Gonvick dropped off 3907 copies of my new book last evening. There they sit, about 50 boxes in the middle of the floor of the nursery sales room. I can't imagine selling that many at this point.

It is always a pleasure to do business with Dick and his crew. Larger printers have a bureaucracy that is sometimes difficult to penetrate. With the last printer I used, you had to go through a sales rep in a fancy office, who went through somebody else, who went through another person, and good grief, you never knew what was going to come out the other end. But Dick's company has all the modern printing equipment with a small town touch. They let me go up there and watch the stuff come off the press to see if I like the colors, and that is fun. I know the guys in the back. I always like to know the guys in the back! Businesses which don't let you meet the guys in the back bother me.

Dick's roving sales representative is James Hanson. James proofs the Gonvick paper, owned by Richards, and he proofed my book as well. He's sells advertising and printing for Richards. Even more importantly, for me, he gets me to stick to deadlines by innocently asking me "So, when are you going to have that ready, then?" I grumble and moan and say stop by next Monday. Sunday night, I get busy, and by Monday morning I have things ready when James rolls in the yard. If James wasn't so attentive, I wouldn't get these books out at all.

I should also mention Sue Eck. She works as a typesetter for Richards, but her talents go far beyond that. She formatted my book, and designed the cover. She's a real pro. When we are tweaking things near the end of a project, I go up to Gonvick and sit down next to Sue and we try some different things, and usually we get it figured out in five minutes. With a larger printer, when you are working back and forth through a sales rep, the same process would take a week or more.

In matters of business, I am prejudiced towards the small! It is a pleasure to work with the great bunch up in Gonvick.