Way back in October, I wrote about my attempts to clean up the digitised text of Ernesta Drinker Bullitt’s account of her journey through Austria Hungary and Germany in the midst of the first World war.
At the time I fully intended to clean up the text, proof read it and contribute it back.
About the same time as I started on Ernesta, I took the decision to retire at the end of 2015. The need to finish off various bits of work meant that Ernesta took a back seat. Coincident with all of this we took the decision to sell up and move out of Canberra to country Victoria, something that’s taken a ginormous amount of time to organise, so I’m afraid that poor Ernesta has languished in a corner of my cloud storage account.
But I did want to read the book, so a month or so ago I gave in and ordered a print on demand version from one of these Indian specialist print on demand companies. I’ll admit I partly did this because there’s a couple of old reference texts I wanted that are available through the same people, so I thought I’d try out the process on something less crucial.
Well the book took an age to come, something I’ll blame on the Indian postal service more than anything else, but it arrived well packed sealed in plastic inside a cardboard sleeve, and covered with a zillion postage stamps.
Print quality was good and clear – yes there’s the odd artefact from the scanning process but the book is perfectly legible, and well bound with the edges nice and sharp. The paper used is good quality, perhaps a slightly lighter weight than I would have specified, but otherwise fine.
The cost of the whole thing was about what you’d pay for a new Penguin Classics paperback here in Australia – not extortionate but not remarkably cheap either.
That said I’d certainly go down this route again with hard to find texts, especially those that I was using as reference material …