PAPER AND TREASURE CHESTS

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I’ve nothing against digital books and, in fact, read them quite often. There is, however, something wonderful about holding a book that the digital experience cannot quite match. The paper texture, the scent of the ink, the crispness of the pages, the ability to physically bend a page. It’s an entire experience, and I would certainly miss it were it taken away.

In the not-too-distant-future we’ll be offering our catalog of books, which is currently available in print format only, in digital format. Because even though I enjoy physical paper books, I’m just one person. You may feel entirely different than I do, and you may be asking, “Why can’t I get your titles on Kindle?” It’s on the horizon along with various other goals.

Today, our first full-length novel went on sale. It’s entitled One of the Madding Crowd and was written by author David W. Dutton. It’s telling, I think, that this is our first-published novel. Telling because David was such a joy to work with–so open to changes and suggestions–that he’s likely spoiled me. In the months that we collaborated on transforming his manuscript to a printed, bound book, we developed a smooth working cadence. The manuscript was also fairly tight, which also made my job a bit easier than it might otherwise had been. Lastly, David was very responsive to target deadlines and, in my opinion, went way above and beyond what I’d expect of an author. But I know, too, that he did this because it’s his name on the cover and title page. DPP published the book, but David was extremely proactive in identifying and helping to solve whatever challenges arose during the editing of the manuscript, and for that I’ll always be grateful.

One of the Madding Crowd is the story of Marc Steadman. You don’t know Marc, but trust me, by the end of the book, you’ll come to know and understand him quite well. You’ll discover Marc’s strengths and weaknesses–his finer points and the flaws that make him all-too human. As an author, David has many strengths, and one of his greatest is characterization. Whether you experience David’s story via a paper book or a digital file, I think you’ll enjoy it. I’ve read it several times, and each time have walked away with a greater appreciation of David’s ability to clearly and concisely tell an interesting story.

While I’m pleased with each of the titles DPP has published in our first year of operations, I feel especially fortunate to have David’s book in our catalog. It’s a little treasure that now just happens to be in our treasure chest. For a long time, David’s book resided in the digital world–as an electronic manuscript. No doubt it still exists somewhere on his laptop, but it’s also here, as a 262-page print novel, in my hands, in David’s hands, and perhaps in yours as well.

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