from the desk of
author LInda Rigsbee
When Rigsbee began publishing in 1986, there were two choices; traditional publishing or self-publishing (usually paying thousands of dollars to have someone publish your book.) Self-publishing back then was socially unaccepted by traditionally published authors and publishers. After all, the book could be junk. Anyone could publish anything they wanted - kind of like the internet today, right?
Rigsbee created a third alternative - Home-Publishing. She still uses this process for some of her books, in spite of the fact that self-publishing has become simple, affordable and socially acceptable through companies like Amazon KDP and Smashwords.
Unlike self-publishing, Rigsbee's home-published books have always been welcomed as unique handcrafted items. She marketed them locally anywhere crafts were sold.
Marketing handcrafted books before internet became popular. Here are pictures of some of her books back then.
Early books were either comb bound or had sewn binding covered by white duck tape. Later, she figured out a method of glue-binding. The process was labor intensive and generally expensive due to the cost of ink. She used photos she had taken and e-paintings she had created as cover pictures. Here are some early glue bound books. Notice there is always an unprinted margin.
Over a period of years, she improved the process, but ink remained an issue, gradually forcing her to stop making all but the simplest books at home. Another issue she faced was cutting the printed book. She had a simple guillotine paper cutter that would only reliably cut about six sheets of paper at a time. This resulted in inconsistent page width - and ultimately, to pages that didn't stay in the book.
With the purchase of a new printer and programs that would print borderless, and a paper cutter that would take up to a 2" thick book, she was able to create a book that was comparable to a professionally bound book. The new printer came with an ink program that made printing less expensive.
Here are some of the new books she created, next to professionally bound books.
If someone wants a book tomorrow and she has none in stock, she can make one. This comes in handy for gifts. Probably most rewarding, though, is the ability to make books any size. She makes miniature books as Christmas ornaments and books that can be tucked into a pocket. She is working on a book that explains the process of home-publishing and is available for short talks on the subject. Contact her through email for any questions.