Posts Tagged ‘book’

I do not subscribe to very many magazines. I receive Boy’s Life and Scouting magazines, of course. I own a Macintosh computer so I receive Mac/Life and MacWorld magazines. I also get Entertainment Weekly just for the fun of it. Once in a while I may subscribe to Consumer reports or Popular Science. A magazine I once subscribed to and enjoyed was American Scouting Digest (ASD).

I liked receiving American Scouting Digest. It was a magazine published and written by people who cared about Scouting. The articles were well written. The photographs were outstanding. There was even an “Ask Andy” section of the magazine.

The magazine was a high class printing. Each page was thick stock paper and in color. The photographs were great to look at. The articles were well written. Each issue was only about 44 pages long, but they were worth looking at. The magazine was a fine addition to the official magazines I receive that are published by the Boy Scouts of America.

Tonight, I was sorting through a pile of magazines that had accumulated in my rack (about a two foot tall pile) and I came across my last issues of ASD. The last one I recieved was the Fall 2007 issue. I do not recall getting a subcription notice in the mail so I went online and checked out their site, and noticed it was very out of date. My first thought was, “I guess they quit printing the magazine.”

I did a little more digging on the site and found a phone number to call about subscribing, so I called it. To tell the truth, I did not expect to get on answer, or if I did that it would be the operator telling me this number has been disconected. I was surprised when, after a few rings, Ron Miller ( I think) answered the phone. Mr. Miller is the publisher of ASD.

After a short conversation with Mr. Miller, I discovered that the magazine is printed only after they have enough advertising to cover the printing costs. They do not accept paid subscriptions anymore, but send out issues free to those who ask for one, when they get around to printing one. I asked that he add my name to his mailing list.

I look forward to once again receiving American Scouting Digest, but I realize there may only be two or three issues per year. I hope they find more advertisers to get things running again to printing four to six issues per year. That would be great.

My assistant scoutmaster is eighty years old. His name is Eymard, which is a unique name in central Minnesota. He has been my assistant for nearly twenty years. Eymard is very active in the church and community. He is active in several organizations and wears many hats. He has held many titles over the years.

This week he adds one more title to the list. Eymard is now an author. He has finished writing a book about his life experiences and thoughts. It is a project he has been working on for over two years.

The first draft was written by hand in a spiral notebook. After many revisions and corrections, Eymard had a family member type the book into a computer. Once again, corrections were made after the first copy was printed on a home printer.

I entered the process when Eymard asked me to help him get it published as a softcover book. He was not looking to get it placed in any bookstores, but he wanted to have two hundred copies of the book made for family, relatives, and friends. He had checked with a few local printing companies and discovered the cost would be higher then he would like to spend. Someone suggested to him to have it printed through an online publisher. He knew I spent a lot of time on the internet so he asked for my assistance.

The first online publisher we checked out was not what I would call “user friendly”. Then I remembered hearing about a site called We found it much easier to use, and it had very reasonable prices.

I quickly discovered that I needed to have the book formated as a Word document. I am not fan of Word, being the Mac guy that I am, but I did have it on my computer so I used it. We had to set up the novel exactly the way we wanted it to appear in the book. All chapter headings, margins, and the overall design of the book had to be done before I uploaded it to the website. I also needed to design a front and back cover. It took a few evenings to get things the way Eymard wanted it, but we finally got it ready for its first printing, which would be one book, just to see what it would look like.

When the book arrived, Eymard reread it and discovered that a few more corrections would be needed. He also wanted to add several more photographs. I made the corrections, scanned and added the photographs, and ordered a revised version of the book.

I received another phone call from Eymard last week after he received the revised version. He had found one more correction that needed to be made. One of the chapter titles needed to be renamed. After making the change, we placed the order for two hundred copies of the 183 page publication.

Eymard, his wife Lucille, and their family are very excited about this project. And I have to admit, so am I. Though it was a bit of a challenge, I am honored to have had the chance to assist my assistant scoutmaster in becoming a published author. I know there is one chapter about his Scouting experiences, and I look forward to reading it and the rest of the book when it arrives.

I found an interesting blog post by Gene Kinsey called Living the Grand Life. A recent entry was about a book titled, The Dangerous Book for Boys. I have seen this book in the stores, even picked it up and looked at it. It was quite interesting.

Gene writes in his blog, “I think our experiment in changing the nature of boys hasn’t worked too well. Boys need a little danger. They need to learn to build a fire even if they sustain a little burn. They need to learn how to use a knife and an ax, even if they cut themselves.” and “they need to learn it in a context of responsibility.”

How true that is. I have seen how our current society in this country has been trying to change boys into (shall I dare say it?) a bunch of sissy girls. Boys are not allowed to be boys any more. Boys need to have a little danger in their lives.

Scouting provides an outlet for boys to try building fires, play with a pocket knife, and climb cliffs in a fairly safe environment. Yes, Scouts get nicked, get bruised, and sometimes even get hurt. But in Scouting we try to teach boys how to take risks responsibly, and we try to teach them to be safe, honorable, and dutiful.

Oh yeah, we also teach them basic first aid skills.