Family Histories

pilgrim-familythanksgiving-800px.png
 
 

Puzzle Mountain Digital (PMD) handles non-technical publications as well. Use our services to help your family publish stories, essays, poems, photographs, and other materials in book form. Explore this page to discover what you can do. Thank you for considering PMD for your book project.

On this page, you’ll find information you need to publish your family’s collection of stories and other materials. Pricing is simple, as are PMD's submission guidelines. Payment procedures are easy to follow. Lastly, PMD wants your book project to succeed, so we’ll help however we can.

PMD has been in business since 1997. It started out in technical publishing and has evolved a long way since then. Today PMD specializes in books and digital collections that help families preserve memories, occasions, and stories most important to them. Please get in touch to find out how we can help you create the family publication you’ve been thinking about.

Services

Here’s what PMD can do for you:

  • Consult with you as you plan your project.
  • Cast your text in an attractive, professional format.
  • Create a simple, pleasing cover for your book.
  • Prepare your text and cover files for printing.
  • Handle all the details for production and printing of the collection.

Family Stories

You can tell family stories in a lot of different ways. They might include audio or video recordings, photographs, children’s essays, family histories, or items you’d like to preserve in a digital scrapbook. You can publish your collection as a traditional book, or in digital form. PMD can help you plan what you’d like to include in your collection.

Resources

Coming soon to our site is the resource center, which contains short articles and helpful links. Think of it as the blog portion of PMD's website, because that’s just what it is!

Options

You have four standard options available to you as you plan your project. The option you select depends on your budget, and on whether you would like to publish your book in paperback or electronically. If these options don’t quite fit what you’d like to do, contact PMD to see what arrangements might work.

These options outline PMD's submission guidelines. Detailed guidelines, if necessary, are formulated during project planning. To estimate the cost of your project under each option, please visit Prices.

Option 1 – Standard Package

You provide:

  • Word or RTF file – formatted, but not in final format.
  • Book title and cover preference
  • Other information requested during project planning.

Product:

  • Twenty-five 8 x 5 paperback copies of your book.
  • PDF file used to print the book.
  • PDF file used to print the cover.

Option 2 – Express Package

You provide:

  • PDF file in final format.
  • Book title and cover preference.
  • Other information requested during project planning.

Product:

  • Twenty-five 8 x 5 paperback copies of your book.
  • PDF file used to print the cover.

Option 3 – Electronic Standard

You provide:

  • Word or RTF file – formatted, but not in final format.
  • Book title and cover preference.
  • Other information requested during project planning.

Product: Downloadable ebook.

Option 4 – Electronic Express

You provide:

  • Word or RTF file – formatted, but not in final format.
  • Book title and cover preference.
  • Other information requested during project planning.

Product: Downloadable ebook.

_________________________________________________________________________

Book production isn’t a one-size-fits-all enterprise. If these options don’t exactly fit what you have in mind, here are some extras you can purchase:

  • Custom interior template
  • Custom cover design
  • Larger page format (9 inches x 6 inches)
  • More than 25 copies
  • Paper proofs for cover and interior
  • Editing services
  • Include black and white images for the interior
  • Include cover images
  • Prepare book for sale or distribution online

_________________________________________________________________________

Here is a key to common file formats:

  • .doc – Word document
  • .rtf – Rich Text Format, or RTF
  • .pdf – Portable Document Format, or PDF

If you use a Mac, don’t worry about file formats. PMD’s production machine is a Mac.

Prices

You have four standard options available to you as you plan your project. The option you select depends on your budget, and on whether you would like to publish your book in paperback or electronically. If these options don’t match what you’d like to do, check the list of extras and contact PMD. We can make arrangements that fit your vision.

For all four options, prices are based on the number of pages in your book. The shorter the book, the more you save on production costs. See the example for each option to estimate the cost of your project. All prices are in US dollars.

Option 1 – Standard Package ($18 per page)

For Option 1, you submit a file with your text and PMD does the rest to produce your book. Under this option, twenty-five copies of a forty-page book costs $720 USD.

Option 2 – Express Package ($13 per page)

For Option 2, you submit a PDF file that contains the book’s text formatted exactly as you want it. PMD takes it from there to produce twenty-five copies of your book. Under this option, a fifty-page book costs $520 USD.

Option 3 – Electronic Standard ($8 per page)

Option 3 resembles Option 1, but the product is an ebook rather than twenty-five paper copies. You submit a file that contains your text, and PMD produces the ebook. A sixty-page book under this option would cost $480 USD.

Option 4 – Electronic Express ($3 per page)

Select Option 4 when you want to produce an ebook for the lowest possible cost. You submit a file that contains your text formatted exactly as you want it, and PMD produces the ebook. A seventy-page book under this option costs $210 USD.

If you have a long book, Option 4 is economical because the maximum cost is $295 USD. Every page from one hundred on up is free.

_________________________________________________________________________

Here are some extras you can purchase in addition to the four standard options:

  • Custom interior template
  • Custom cover design
  • Larger page format (9 inches x 6 inches)
  • More than 25 copies
  • Paper proofs for cover and interior
  • Editing services
  • Include black and white images for the interior
  • Include cover images
  • Prepare book for sale online

FAQ

Here are some questions that may have come to mind as you think about your project. If you don’t find answers you need here, please write to sgreffenius@gmail.com.

I’ve been working on a scrapbook that I’d like to put online. Can PMD help me with that?

Yes. Scan your photographs, or ask a local photography service to do it. Once images are in digital form, PMD helps with all the rest.

I have a mixture of family history, personal memoirs, compositions by my children or grandchildren, and miscellaneous pictures I’d like to include in my book. Is that possible?

Anything is possible, because it’s your book! You’ll want to plan your project to stay within your budget, but otherwise you can include as many different types of materials as you like.

What am going to do with twenty-five copies of my book?

Give them away, naturally! You can think of the book from the beginning as a gift, fromyou to the other members of your family – ready for Christmas, birthdays, graduations, reunions, or any other family occasion. Friends who know you and your family well will appreciate a gift like that, too.

What happens if I’m not satisfied with my book?

For ebooks, PMD corrects the problem free of charge. For printed copies, careful procedures assure that you are happy with the publication. Here you receive an advantage from PMD's long experience with many kinds of publications, printed and electronic.

I have an autobiography that I think other people would be interested in. What if I want to sell my book on Amazon or elsewhere?

PMD is a book production outfit, so it does not market the books it produces. PMD can, however, assign an ISBN (required by Amazon), and place a bar code on the back cover. So, PMD can prepare your book for the marketplace.

I’ve never written a book before. I need an editor! Can PMD provide that service?

Yes, but editing can get expensive. Best is to ask people you trust to help with editing tasks. They’ll appreciate that you trust their judgment, knowledge, and skills. After you have had help, the final stages of editing are much easier.

I’m pretty experienced with digital publishing, but I don’t have the software I need to convert files to PDF. How can I get the lower price PDF offers when I submit my materials in a PDF file?

A number of online applications let you convert files for free. If you have a Word file, for instance, you can convert it to PDF at www.doc2pdf.net. Other sites are available.

Why can’t I submit my files as is and let PMD convert it to PDF?

Of course you can have that under Options 1 and 3. For Options 2 and 4, submitting your file as a PDF is your assurance that you would like to publish it exactly as is. That assurance results in a lower price.

What if I want something for the cover that’s inspired by my own family, but I can’t afford $500 and up for a professional graphics designer. What should I do?

You need a middle ground between a standard cover and an expensive designer. First, you can ask a young designer in your community to help you. Another route is to adapt your design from one that already exists. PMD can help with that.

What resources exist online to help me with my project?

Of course Google’s your best friend here. Type your question – How do I do such and such? – and Google will find a way. From time to time, PMD publishes a short article in Resources to help guide authors and editors through their projects.

Where can I find a sample of PMD's work?

Most accessible is Childhood Dreams. If you’d like a free paper copy of Childhood Dreams, please write to sgreffenius@gmail.com and include your mailing address. When you see the book, you’ll see first-hand its attractive appearance and varied content. You’ll also grasp how you can produce the unusual and valued book you’ve thought about for so long.

What email procedures should I keep in mind when I communicate with PMD about my project?

First, send your files to PMD as email attachments. One file per message helps a lot. Second, include your project number in the subject line of each email message you send to PMD. Third, use one email address and inbox for all your correspondence with PMD. The rest will take care of itself.

What about file management? It seems things can get lost.

You’re right! Practice good file management at all times. Back up everything. When you send a file to PMD, label it and store it where you can easily retrieve it. When you receive a file from PMD, store the file where you won’t lose track of it. Use dates or version numbers to identify different versions. Then hope the rest takes care of itself.

We want to make publication of our family’s stories a group project. How does that work?

Designate a single point of contact for all transactions with PMD. That’s the only way, we all know, to avoid catastrophic confusion.

How do I pay for my order?

Before your project goes to the printer, you’ll receive an itemized invoice from PMD via PayPal. You can pay the invoice by credit card whether or not you have a PayPal account. If you prefer to pay by check sent via regular mail, that option is available as well.

All the details required for this project seem too much. What should I do? How do I get started?

Take it easy and take it one step at a time. You already made a key move when you came to this site. PMD exists to help with book production so you can focus on content. We’ll assist you with project planning and advice, so you have something ready for production. To prepare the content, rely on selected members of your family. After all, they want to see their work preserved in print just as much as you do!

Contact Us

Puzzle Mountain Press is located in Westwood, Massachusetts. Contact PMD by phone or email:

Phone: 781-223-1396

Email: sgreffenius@gmail.com

Snail Mail: 51 Oriole Road, Westwood, MA 02090