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Questions about The Beatles Bible
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2 August 2010
Forum Posts: 4392
Member Since:
31 March 2008
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MrBig said:

A physical book version of the Beatles Bible would be awesome…

Wouldn't it! I have mixed feelings though. Some thoughts:

1. I like owning and publishing my own stuff, and having control over what happens to it. I don't want to hand over copyright to a third-party publisher.

2. I like the idea of a website being free to use but advertising-funded. It means I get paid a certain amount each month regardless of whether I work on it or not, though it's nowhere near enough to give up the day job. However, if I turned it into a book a) someone else would get a cut, and b) I'd get paid only for book sales in the short term, and if it went out of print I wouldn't make any more money.

3. I've quoted fairly extensively from some sources. This is allowed under fair use laws, but if presented in a single printed volume it might look somewhat questionable. See also the photos in the gallery. Clearing all that would be a bloody nightmare.

4. I'm not sure this site is distinctive enough from the various day-by-day or song-by-song Beatles books already out there. As a site I think it works well, whereas I'm not sure we need another printed guide to The Beatles' lives and times.

5. I can update the site when new stuff happens or I have corrections to make. I've lost count of the number of times I've seen careless things written in Beatles books that the author should have checked and changed before it went to print. Afterwards there's no way back.

6. You couldn't have a forum in a book.

7. I'd rather keep The Beatles Bible as it is, but write a book on a separate, unique angle on The Beatles if I'm able (time, ideas, sanity are the normal limits). I have some ideas.

8. Including the writing I'm preparing offline, this site has around 750,000 words. That's just the content of my articles; it doesn't include any of the user-generated comments and forum posts. Now, if an average book has 400 words per page, The Beatles Bible would run to 1,875 pages. And I'm not finished yet. If Bill Harry hadn't already written a book with the same title, a multi-volume leather-bound Beatles Encyclopedia (Encyclopedia Beatlica?) might work. Maybe I should look into self-publication.

That said, if any publishers happen to be reading, let's talk. a-hard-days-night-john-6

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