Why the Epic of Bisbee

Once upon a time, I started writing about Bisbee’s history.

Much of that has been published, in one form or another (and most all is now out of print), while quite a bit has never seen the light of day.

Not too long ago, I decided that all of this work needed to be organized, edited, updated and — most important — brought back into publication, for a long-term audience.

Early publication by Gary Dillard

This is one of my early- mid-range publications (1998) in the form of a 28-page booklet, printed and assembled in-house.

I need to publish a book. I’ve published in just about every form other than the book and I need to get my stuff out there in that form. I’ve had lots of them in mind, and have gotten most of the way toward publishing on several occasions, but have never made it all the way. Margaret says it’s because I’m too much of a perfectionist — this needs a little more research, amother chapter is needed, an illustration would help this, that needs to be vetted by someone else who knows the subject matter . . . .

There’s always something in the way.

Finally, I think, I’ve come to terms with those issues. I have hundreds of thousands of words of stuff that has been researched and written; I have research notes or documents that could lead to hundreds of thousands more.

And Bisbee needs this stuff to be written. It’s an exciting city (both currently and historically), but it’s been riding too long on just a few stories from the past, and those mostly in short form, so more stories and more details are needed.

That’s what the Epic of Bisbee series is to be about.

Firstly, there’s a new publication form. Not all that new, perhaps, but its advent was long after I started publishing. That is “print on demand.” The form I have chosen is CreateSpace. It doesn’t require tens of thousands, or even thousands, of dollars to get started.

Perhaps more important, it’s really easy to make changes. If, over the first year that the Deportation book is in print, for example, I find 10 things I need to correct and 20 things I need to add, I can do it in a second edition.

Printing + internet = wonderful pairing

Secondly, there’s the availability of a wonderful pairing — the printed (or digital) book and the internet. If, the first day after the book is published, a few errors, whether significant or spelling-related, are discovered, those can be posted on this website. The book will let people know that updates will be posted to the web, so readers can make a point of coming there to discover whether, indeed, there are such emendations.

And in between is the email newsletter, which can reach out to readers to let them know that such additions are available for them.

Thirdly, I now have available to me the time necessary to get this work done. That’s a story I won’t detail here, but it has pushed forward the time I though I would have for this work. Not too long ago, I thought it might be a retirement project. But that’s still quite a few years away, and I didn’t want to wait. So being able to start now is a joy.

Finally, the availability of print on demand allows for the “long tail.” Because they don’t have to be physically stocked somewhere and replenished regularly, these books will be around for the long term. I was going to say “forever,” but “the long term” is more accurate. None of these methods, whether physical or digital, requires that I have to find time to print a book and distribute it. That means I can be off creating something new, instead.

So “thank you” to each of you who is reading this, who has signed up for my Facebook or Twitter page or email newsletter (when it becomes available.)

I’m looking forward to sharing what I enjoy so much with those of you who also possess some of those feeling about Bisbee.



Why the Epic of Bisbee — 2 Comments

  1. Gary: I am so looking foward to your new Epic of Bisbee!!!!!!!!

    Great job!