“The RoseBouquet”

About and FOR friends of Ruthe’s Secret Roses


“The RoseBouquet”

The Making of Books

I thought I might show you my process for the making of books. (You know of course, that in reading my RoseBouquet you are stuck with whatever experiences I’m having).

I’m sorry if you find this boring; I happen to enjoy the making of books. But I confess I got very exhausted last week in this particular project.

Because I hoped to give my advance reviewers enough time to read and mark up their copies by the end of August so that I can use those tips in the final polish before the book goes to the professional printers. Hopefully, before the end of September. This meant that I was sacrificing blocks of my daily time that I had considered “my time.” That included gardening, housekeeping, and even sometimes email time.

I praised God that on Wednesday I was able to get about 68 batches of double-sided pages printed. That saved me on paper and ink for my printer.

On Thursday I still had about 28 pages where I had printed the black/white page on my old Horse (b/w) printer, but needed to get the side with colour images done yet. However, since I could only lay out about 20-21 piles of pages for collating, I got started on that while these last few pages were printing.

printed pages waiting for collating line up

This is a view of pages needing the other side printed yet…

sorting the bundles of pages printed at the office

Here I was sorting out the bundles of pages printed at the office and getting them in sequence with the other page bundles.

pages lined up on a shelf board over a chair for collating

To make more room for spreading out the pages for collating I brought in some shelf boards from the basement, and put one across a chair…

more pages lined up on another board across the table

The longer one I laid across my small dining table, and I lined up the pages.

But this is where I started to have a backache. With my osteoporosis, I’ve lost 5 inches in height, and so when I’m on my feet for more than an hour or two, my vertebrae begin to grind on each other. I have lots of will power, but after a while of going round and round the room and layering up sections of the book – I just had to sit down once in a while to rest my back. As soon as I took the weight off my spine, I began to feel better.

Remember this book has 333 pages, so I had to lay out a fresh batch of another 20 or 21 piles of pages many times!
I began to think about the miles and miles of walking exercise I was getting, and feeling a bit sorry for myself.

books collated and ready for covers and binding

Finally, about 10 pm in the evening I had all the 20 books collated and was ready to start on the covers and binding.

I had an idea for photos on the back cover of the various buildings our mission has been in over the 76 years, so I got to sit down at the computer for a while. Then I laminated the covers.

But it was after midnight and I decided to leave the binding for Friday.

most of the books now bound - nearly done!

My sister had given me the old handle-operated hole-punch machine and the binding machine when she moved to BC in 1994, so I brought them up from the basement and STOOD for those steps. Again my back was whimpering, so after every second or third book, I sat down a while. Here you see that I was nearly done. By the evening I got even that job finished!

I’d also made some phone calls and sent emails to invite those on my select list to come pick up their copies. (I lost interest in driving around to deliver them). Some came on Saturday. A number came yesterday, and another former co-worker is on her way over right now. I’ll be able to hand out a few more at the office tomorrow.

Yes! But now I’m focused on finishing the People Index in the Appendix, and designing the cover collages. And I hope to go get some quotes from printers tomorrow. Then when our Executive Committee has decided on a price, I will start to write a letter which will be mailed out to our mailing list and everyone else I can track down who might be interested in placing an advance order.

These books are to come back to me by Sept. 2. Then I’ll try to incorporate their suggestions and changes into the final polish before it goes to the professional printers.

I do enjoy the making of books, but right now I’ve had my fill of it for a while. 🙂


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