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Peter Mallory's Blog


By pmallory - Posted on 20 June 2012

17 October 2011

I have Good News and Bad News!

First the good news. Based on sales of the collector edition, The Sport of Rowing will be making contributions to support the rowing federations of eight countries. This Saturday afternoon at the U.S. National Team Alumni Reception and Reunion at the Head of the Charles, I will personally present a check for $5,959 to Gillian Perry of the National Rowing Foundation in memory of her husband, Hart.

Now the bad news. Oh, my! The truck carrying standard editions has just arrived at the distribution center in Los Angeles several days late. When the boxes were opened, we immediately discovered an unmitigated disaster. The books are beautiful inside. Same paper, same color illustrations, same quality, actually the same print run as the collector edition, all flawless! But the covers are impossibly defective. My heart sank! No way I could accept them. The coating apparently didn’t dry properly or something, and so they have emerged from their shipping boxes with flaws and blemishes everywhere. Every single one!

I am shocked to the core! I feel like I’ve caught an oar handle in the gut in a boat-stopping crab with one stroke to go!

We are busy trying to figure out what to do next. There will be a conference call in an hour. No matter what, I won’t release any copies of the standard edition until they are perfect! You have my word on that. But it may take until Christmas to fix this mess.

And I am deeply embarrassed to tell you there is even more news. At least it's not exactly bad.

I just did a count of our sales so far. You may recall that the collector edition sold out last April in less than a week. Well, now we’re running out of the standard edition as well! So if you are willing to believe in me when I say that I am absolutely breaking my back to ensure that this book of mine will be worth every minute of the additional wait, if you’re still willing to trust me despite this stunning setback, well then my advice is not to delay another day. If you want a copy of The Sport of Rowing, go right now to www.row2k.com and place your order. There is no talk of another printing, so this may be your very last chance.

By the way, we will take no orders on this Friday, October 21 as we gear up for the Head of the Charles, so plan accordingly.

Let Me Shake Your Hand and Beg Your Forgiveness!

Whether or not there are copies left to order by this weekend, on both Saturday and Sunday I will be at the Sew Sporty Tent in the Rowing & Fitness EXPO area of the Head of the Charles Regatta, near the finish line on the Boston side of the river. We will take pictures of me with each purchaser and eventually post them on our website. When the standard edition finally comes out, I will include the appropriate photo with each copy. It's also a chance for contributors to my research to say hi and for me to thank you in person. For some, it will be the first time we have met face-to-face. For others, it will be the first time in decades.

Or just come and give me a piece of your mind! Hopefully we can laugh and cry together. Believe me. Nobody is as frustrated as I am right now!

Here are the hours:

From Boston I will head straight across the Atlantic and be at the River & Rowing Museum in Henley on 29 October to speak at their Rowing History Forum (details at www.rrm.co.uk). Alas, there will be no copies of the standard edition for me to sign, but you will be able to see what the book will look like inside. And I’ll tell you some of my adventures in researching and writing what I am still confident you will eventually conclude is a unique and indispensible addition to rowing literature. A friend recently called it "a love letter to the sport." I like that.

So I guess if today's bad news is the worst thing that happens this year, it will still be one of the best years of my life . . . thanks to all of you.