Shevat 5773 / January 2013
Our First Anniversary
They say that publishing a book is like having a baby. Continuing this analogy, by virtue of the fact that we published five new titles in our first year of operation, it’s as if we not only became new parents, but we became new parents to twins and triplets!
The world of skeptics was waiting to see how our new titles would turn out. Would the content be quality material? Would the editing and layout demonstrate a high standard? Would the bookstores respect our titles the way they regard those of established publishers?
To tell you the truth, I was also a little concerned about the same things.
It wasn’t easy, but our team persevered until we achieved our goal of excellence. Yes, our covers looked as nice as the others. Yes, the contents matched the beauty of the covers. Yes, they were placed alongside the others in the bookstores. And yes, our titles sold well, and were enthusiastically received by their readers.
We are extremely grateful to Hashem for all of the siyata d’Shmaya He afforded us over this first year, and we also thank our many peers who encouraged and advised us as we were entering new waters.
I would like to take this opportunity to give you a glance behind the scenes to see how we established ourselves in the past year.
First of all, we searched for established authors and hidden talent. We were zoche to find just what we were looking for in the personages of Dovid Sussman (Prime Suspect), Rabbi Avi Shafran (It’s All in the Angle) and Rabbi Yirmiyohu Kaganoff (From Buffalo Burgers to Monetary Mysteries)—all experienced writers, as well as in Shani Brown (Izzy and Ezzy and the Winning Play and Izzy and Ezzy Enjoy a Snow Day), a talented and creative newcomer to the field.
Next, we assembled a friendly team of editors, proofreaders and graphic and layout artists, all working together under my careful coordination.
When the time came to print our books, we printed some in Israel at Old City Press on Rechov Beit Hadfus, and the others in the United States of America (it’s on the western shores of the Atlantic Ocean). We might even try printing in China after Pesach.
Then our good friends at Judaica Press took care of contacting all of the Jewish bookstores worldwide, as well as making our titles available on their website and Amazon.com.
Concurrently, we established our own advertising campaign by choosing the appropriate, dignified style that we wanted to represent us, and we ran our ads in several periodicals and websites (Mishpacha, Binah, Hamodia, Yated, Zman, Ami, The English Update, Yeshivah World News and Baltimore Jewish Life).
Not satisfied with that, we contacted the bookstores directly to let them know about our special titles (just in case they didn’t know already), and we arranged book reviews in several venues around the world of print and cyberspace.
Do you think that was hard work? Believe me it was. How can I deny it when Chazal say that kol haschalos kashos (all beginnings are difficult). Mainly for that reason I decided to slow down a little and skip this coming Purim-Pesach season of new releases. You could call it “maternity leave.” I’d rather take my time and produce the next rounds of books carefully than rush to release some right now. And that’s exactly what I’m doing: managing the production of another seven titles to be released next Chanukah and Purim b’ezras Hashem. (I’m still looking for a few more.)
Just as the year 2012 came to a close, so too Torah Temimah Publications completed its “shanah rishonah.” Baruch Hashem we had a good year. We transformed from dreamers to realists, from candidates to contenders.
We hope and pray that Hashem should help us continue going “from strength to strength,” bringing His light to the modern world through the medium of old fashioned publishing.
Rabbi Eliyahu Miller
Publisher and General Editor