Tuesday, December 06, 2011

The INDEX is DONE, and I'm Feeling High on the Price of My New Book --

What's worse in a book than no index? An index with names but no page numbers! ... I nearly brought this off, minutes before the final version of my Inside the Changing Circus: A Critic's Guide (due out Jan.) was on its way to a print vendor (the soul, I think, who recruits the best press offer, something like that). Doing an index is torturous enough without trying to proof the damn thing. Which I forgot to do. Horror of horrors! Gerard Souls back there, but all by himself, without a page number. And a spec "Old Vienna" and four guys named Dominguez, whose first names were so confusing, I nearly went crazy trying to figure out how to list them (seems three of them hail from the famed family Quiros) ...

Only a primer, that up there, on how comatose indexing can make me feel and act -- and review, read on, though I fully respects its critical usefulness to a book. Much more so than the damned annotation numbers I've been chained to in the last too many books. Not, thank God, on Inside the Changing Circus! I HATE text littered with numbers. Here, I have listed key sources in an informal section back of the book. That I value.

Another thing I love about BearManor Media, whose young publisher, Ben Ohmart, currently hangs out in Japan (he married a Japanese lady a few years back, not indexed) , is this: My book, in paperback at nearly 300 pages, is priced at only $19.95! Good going, BearManor! I've been embarrassed in some recent publishing episodes with books of mine that were priced sky high; might that be why the editors insisted on annotating? To foster a more scholarly image, thus justifying the extreme price? ... Sure, this means I will get less royalties, but so be it. I'd rather write books that people who might want to give them a chance can afford to. ...

Blame it on the index: That review down there about Cirque du Soleil was composed -- or decomposed -- during the final stages of my indexing obligations. I think it managed to be even more a bore than the show -- Tote Tote Totem, Good Bye! -- that it purports to review. So, I've chopped it down to the humdrum essentials, something like I wish Cirque would do.

I might continue this latter. Lots of big top bits backed up in e-mail. Blame it on cyber courier Don Covington for failing to send footnotes.

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