Friday, 24 February 2012

OFA coffee table book, part 13

Okay, so tomorrow, Saturday, the 25th of February 2012, is going to be the decision day for The Old Frees' Association's coffee table book project. The special general meeting which the OFA president has called will convene at 10 o'clock in the morning to approve or reject the budget of RM50,000 for this project.

So far, I think that the general membership of the association is quite favourable towards this coffee table book. I hear that there has been only one comment about it that seemed somewhat neutral. Still, you can never tell what's going to happen tomorrow.

Definitely, I'll be there to cast my vote and there's no secret about how I'm going to do it.

But there's only one little concern. According to the agenda, the management committee is proposing to print only 1,500 copies of the book. There are about 1,200 members who shall be getting a copy each free of charge. That leaves only 300 copies which have to be given to the dignitaries, contributors, libraries, et cetera, which means that there will hardly be any copy left for sale to the general public.

I would believe that there are many Old Frees out there, who are not members of The Old Frees' Association, who would like to own their copies too. Therefore, I hope someone from the floor will also voice out their opinion on this and get the management committee to consider at least a 2,000-copy run for this commemorative book.

In the meantime this week has been busily spent finalising the articles before giving them to the company that's going the graphic layout. I'm supposed to check only for standardisation but the more I looked at the stories, the more I see that I've got to do some minor edits as well.

Since Monday I've been uploading the finalised articles to their server in batches and I'm starting to get the first draft back even before I can finish my side of the job. The draft on the history of the OFA looked good but there is room for general improvement.

Two days ago, I even had to go down to the association to look into the application for the ISBN code. It had been hanging in the air for so long without anyone doing anything and now, it's a big rush to fill in the forms and get the necessary documents ready. Not too difficult to complete the forms, actually, but it needed coordination to get the president to sign, the OFA office to provide copies of the association's certificate from the Registrar of Societies and myself to prepare a quick mock-up of the cover. Uninspiring but not bad for a hurried job, eh? Took less than 10 minutes to rifle it up and print. The only difference from the final cover will be that the background of the cover will most probably be in deep blue, the colour of the Penang Free School. Luckily everything's here been completed and the forms were couriered to the National Library yesterday. Will be waiting anxiously for the National Library to get back to us next week!

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