The Journal Arrives!

Most of our members should receive the April issue of The Watsonian beginning today (Friday), as it was sent First Class last Monday. International mailings have also been sent First Class (at a whopping $8.91 postage per copy!) and should arrive beginning next week.

The Society welcomes your comments and observations regarding this second issue, especially as it relates to the length of the journal (172 pages), content, and quality of the articles.

We will be evaluating a number of factors concerning the size, production cost, and postage rates of the journal and your input will be critical. It is a bit ironic that technology allows us to print a journal of 172 pages and bind it for $4.50 a copy, but to get it to England, France, Italy, Spain, UAE, and elsewhere, it costs twice that amount for postage! The domestic U.S. postage alone is nearly $2.50 per journal. Our total cost for this issue was $1,400.00. That is very close to our budget of $10.00 per journal ($40 for four issues which is our current two-year dues rate). But, as postage and print costs continue to spiral upward, our only alternative is to charge more. Actually, a reduction in the page count to, say, 80 pages will STILL cost about the same to produce and mail; we would save only a dollar or so. We would not gain that much by publishing a smaller journal (except wear and tear on our talented Editor). The printers and the post office have rates pretty well figured out in their favour.

We believe the Society and our Editor, Dr Joanne Yates, have produced one of the finest journals to be found, and we have all of our contributors to thank for that distinction and accomplishment. This is your journal. What we want to know, is: “What do you want going forward?” Bigger . . . Smaller . . . About the Same . . . ?

Please take a moment to leave a comment here about the journal after you have a chance to review it when it arrives; also, please give us your thoughts on what you wish to see going forward. What you have to say is very important. Thank you.

10 Replies to “The Journal Arrives!”

  1. I received my copy of The Watsonian on Saturday, and it made for an enjoyable Memorial Day Weekend. I must admit to being somewhat biased, as I am a contributor to the issue, but I thought that Joanne and Don did a fine job with the publication. The articles were interesting, well-written and sometimes provocative, and the publication itself was handsomely mounted, printed, bound, and illustrated. I am sure that our JHWS leadership would like to hear from other readers and members (so please post your comments), but Joanne and Don certainly deserve our praise.
    As far as the future is concerned, two things matter. First, we all need to encourage our Sherlockian colleagues to join the JHWS. One of the best advertisements for membership is The Watsonian itself, so don’t hesitate to display your copy of the journal.
    Second, keep your eyes and ears open at scion meetings and events for papers suitable for publication in The Watsonian. In addition to formal papers, toasts and poems can be edited into excellent contributions.
    I very much look forward to many future issues of The Watsonian and appreciate the contributions of our membership and the hard work of our leadership.

  2. I received my copy of the Spring issue on Friday and have so far read about half of it. An issue of this size is meant to be savored like an ancient and cobwebby bottle until the next on arrives (and I was quite flattered to see my meager efforts mentioned in a footnote).

    Another excellent volume and all on the editorial and writing sides are to be congratulated. I wore my Watson pin to recent Speckled Band of Boston dinner and was happy to answer any questions about it and the JHWS.

    As to cost, “if it means another penny on the income tax” I am willing to pay it to further the Society and its works.

  3. I can only echo the sentiments already posted as to the quality of the journal. Bravo! Why not take a hint from the crowd-sourcing folks, and start an impromptu fund raiser for JHWS to finish this two year cycle, and then the extra pennies needed can be adjusted at the renewal time I am perfectly willing to write a $10 check today to help see us through the next two issues. Yes?

  4. That is very kind, but we don’t have a financial need at this moment. We have an adequate reserve for the next two issues. The concern is keeping membership stable and increasing costs. In 2015, the subscription may have to increase if postage (particularly international) keeps increasing and print costs increase. We need to bring in new members AND consider our costs. Thank you, “Gwen”

  5. I received my copy today, which is impressive (but costly!) I know something of shipping rates, since I must often skip a purchase from some U.S. bookshop because shipping costs are two or three times the price of the book. Perhaps the Society could save something avoiding First Class mailing for us Europeans, even if it means waiting 20 or 25 days longer to receive the magazine?
    The issue is wonderful as usual and color illustrations are great!
    Sadly, there were a couple of errata right in my article, but those have a way of sneaking in unnoticed even after multiple checks.
    If shipping rates keep on rising, maybe we could consider raising some extra contribution on a voluntary basis (5 $ each or so). After all, at 25$ a year (for us international members) JHWS’s is one of the cheapest membership fees around.
    My congratulations again and my deepest thanks especially to Dr Joanne Yates who helped me mold the clumsy English of my original version into an intelligible form.

  6. Thank you for your kind comments, thoughts and ideas. We will consider them carefully.

  7. It brought a smile to my face to find the Journal in my mailbox. I saw the care with which it was bundled. The format of the document speaks volumes about the thought that went into its preparation. The color illustrations are a pleasant surprise.

    I thank Sandy for her care, time, and talent. I thank the authors for their crafting such thought-provoking articles. I thank those who make this organization what it is. I truly appreciate all that goes on behind the scenes.

    My time in the world of 1895 is limited, but I treasure it. That I have the opportunity to sporadically contribute via a quiz is a pleasure. That the electronic medium is available and not overwhelming is a plus. It is great to be the dirty little guy in the street who collects and passes on information. The relaxed, fun-attitude, yet scholarly and educational, is a complex balance.

    Thoughts about the future roll around in my mind. Costs are an issue. Mailing costs should be paid by those to whom material is shipped. Membership rates can be increased considering the benefits and quality and quantity of the printed material received. I am retired and living on a fixed income, but there are some things I am willing to pay more to enjoy.

    In summary, I am grateful to be a member of this society and to have the opportunity to contribute in a small way some of the time.

    1. Thank you “Cooper” for your elegant and kind words. We thank all of our members who have favoured us with their wisdom.

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