From the Editor

by Craig Stark

#6, 17 November 2003

Originally, we conceived this issue to be a straightforward presentation of how to make your books more presentable for photographic purposes. Seems simple enough, until you begin to think about the implications. Is it possible to make your books look too good? Take things to such an extreme that your photographs become deceptive? Well, once this can of worms was opened, it couldn't be re-closed, and so, before we get to the topic of book cosmetology, we'll look at this issue head on in our first article, "Modern Book Hustling? The Essence and Ethics of Salesmanship."

This brings us immediately to (and opens) another can of worms - book cleaning. Again, this seems to be a simple topic, one we could head into without pausing to consider ethical implications, but this can of worms is difficult to close too without first looking at the issues involved in using cleaning methods that may significantly improve the appearance of a book but also lead to damage down the road. More questions of ethics? You bet.

Anyway, with all of these open cans on the table, we thought it would be a good idea to slow down some. Instead of a stand-alone article on book cosmetology, we've decided to break it into two parts. Part one, "Book Cosmetology: Cleaning," which will also include a discussion of cleaning ethics, appears today, and part two, which will discuss simple book repairs and cosmetic enhancements, will appear next month. Now, before anything else gets dumped on the table, let's get started.

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Contact the editor, Craig Stark

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