Adventures in Self-Publishing

As you may know, I’ve never been an advocate of self-publishing. There’s a huge difference between printing a book, which is something that’s easy today with web-based print-on-demand services, and publishing a book, which involves selection, editing, promotion, and distribution. Self-publishing, in my view, is no road to riches.

However, there are some projects for which self-publishing is the way to go. That is, those cases where the physical artifact of a printed book is desired, and/or where there is a small but known audience. Personal memoirs, local histories, and charity cookbooks are excellent projects for self-publishing. You won’t make a lot of money at it, but you’ll get the satisfaction of sharing a printed book with your friends and relatives.

It is for this reason that I have created The Mars Diaries.

The Mars Diaries is nothing more nor less than a trade paperback collecting the blogs of the Mars Desert Research Station’s Crew 88. The content is the same as what you could find at Bianca’s, Laksen’s, Paul’s, Diego’s and my blogs, and the pictures are in black and white. All I’ve done is collect them in one place, put them in chronological order, and format them for print. Well, I also got Lynne Ann Morse and Kate Yule to translate Bianca’s and Diego’s blogs into English — that’s something you won’t find online.

The main purpose of this book is to have a physical souvenir for the crew, and their friends and families, of our adventure on “Mars.” But as long as I’ve gone to the trouble of putting this volume together, I saw no reason not to make it available for anyone who wants to buy a copy. You can order one yourself, if you like, from

It’s only $20, and shipping is currently free. If you order a copy, please do let me know how you like it.

P.S. I did this project in Microsoft Word, for reasons that seemed valid when I started. I’m proud of the end result, but I have to say that the experience might just be the straw that makes this camel delete the last bits of Microsoft software from his Mac and use something else instead. Anything else. Maybe a sharp stick and a piece of leather.

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