To all our readers and associates, we want to wish you a happy New Year. We hope you've all had a great holiday season.
Our new issue is coming along nicely. We've located a competent and professional printer to handle Volume 2. V2 is going to be bigger and snazzier than Volume One was, and it's more in line with what I wanted the first issue to look like. It should be out in February.
GOOD NEWS: For those of you that missed the first issue, it will be reprinted simultaneously with V2 in an as-yet-unspecified quantity. There were many errors rampant in the first printing, and this second run will be more of a "director's cut" of Volume 1. Keep your eyes peeled, because when this printing is gone, it will be gone for good.
BAD NEWS: Due to an overwhelming lack of support from the tobacco industry, we have no choice but to increase the cover price of The Ephemeris. Here's what happened:
When our first issue went to print, we didn't solicit any advertisers aside from a few of our close, trusted friends. We didn't want to answer a bunch of questions about our magazine- rather, we wanted to say ‘Here's the magazine, see for yourself.’What we ended up with was a bunch of companies that pledged to buy ad space for the second issue, just as we had planned.
What we didn't plan on was almost all of the companies going back on their word and reneging on their pledges. Some wanted us to place shill reviews for their products in exchange for buying ad space. We responded by refusing to run reviews for any products manufactured by our advertisers. They didn't like that, so away they went.
One company wanted pertinent circulation records before placing an ad. This would have entailed us sharing the billing information of all of our customers that purchased the first issue. It will indeed be a very cold day in hell before something like that takes place. Tobacco companies may be used to backhanded business deals, but we at The Ephemeris are not shysty devils. And so another one bit the dust.
Other companies are so mired in red tape that getting anyone to commit to anything is some sort of Kafkaesque bureaucratic nightmare. I'm slowly understanding that the Swedish way of doing business is to talk you into circles until you eventually go away. "Sure, we'd love to run an ad. Talk to so-and-so." After speaking to sixty different individuals who all claim that they have no authority in such matters, you finally just go all the way to the top and talk to the Chief CEO who says "I have no authority in such matters."
How anything ever gets done in Sweden is beyond me. It's no wonder that the Chinese now own Volvo.
Let me make this clear for all of the major Scandinavian tobacco manufacturers: you have all been contacted by a member of the Ephemeris staff. If you are interested in placing an ad, please contact Mick Hellwig at M.Hellwig@STephemeris.com. It's really that simple.
And finally, there are those companies that are just... cheap. They're willing to sink thousands of dollars into internet spam marketing, but they're unwilling to drop a few hundred dollars on a print ad for a magazine that is purchased in almost 25 countries. To quote the GZA; "Niggas so stingy, they got short arms and deep pockets."
So until these companies heed the words from the Genius, we'll have to increase our cover price to help to cover the cost of printing. It sucks, but it was inevitable.
The Snuff Taker's Ephemeris will still be a bargain compared to most specialty/niche magazines. Many of our peers in the independent publishing business are charging 12.00 and up for quarterly mags printed on cheap stock with lower page counts than our Ephemeris. And these are publications with advertisements.
So while the situation is not to our liking, we'll keep on trucking despite the odds. When we put out our first issue, there were only two factions involved, us and you- the readers. As long as we have you, we don't need anything else.
Here's to a fantastic 2011 for you and yours!