Category Archives: Did you know…

New NZ Post Outlet at Mobil Karori Works Great

NZ_Post_Mobil_Karori_street_viewEfficient and effective postal services are essential for our home-based book publishing and distribution business. We send and receive packages and letters around New Zealand and overseas. So, we were concerned to learn that the NZ Post shop in Karori was going to close and be replaced by a new outlet at the Mobil service station.

NZ_Post_Mobil_Karori_shop_entryWe needn’t have worried. The new facilities and the customer service at the new Mobil outlet are excellent. NZ Post has helped the transition by providing a trainer form the South Island to get the Mobil staff up to speed. One the first day I had a package to airmail to Vanuatu – this was no problem.

I can drop off prepaid packages and stamped letters. We sometimes have lots of packages that are too big to fit in a post box slot, so being able to leave them at Mobil is important.

NZ_Post_Mobil_Karori_containerOur PO Box is now located in a refurbished container at the back of the Mobil property. Do watch out for vehicles as you walk across the forecourt.


You gain entry by keying in a 4 digit PIN.

NZ_Post_Mobil_Karori_PGPL_box_17160Our box (17160) used to have a door about 6″ square and was on the very bottom row, so was hard to get at. Our new box is bigger and can comfortably fit foolscap size envelopes and packages up about 2″ deep. And as bonus, it is at chest height — no more bending and crouching – Yay!  If a package is too big or needs to be signed for, the staff leave a card and I call at the counter to claim it – just like a real Post Office.

For our business, one week on, the transition to the Mobil outlet has worked well.

Philip Garside

The value of a book

I’ve just posted these thoughts on where stimulating discussions are going on about the nature and future of books.

The value of a book

In the beginning was the story and the storyteller told her stories to a few other people at a time. Then the listeners shared the the story as they remembered it to a few other people.

The best stories moved people and became a part of their culture, and who they were,  and were treasured because they were true. And the storytellers told the stories to their grandchildren and the stories lived on.

Then the stories were written down – on clay tablets, on parchment, on smooth tanned animal hides. And the stories were now separate from the storyteller and could be spread to the next village and the next town without the storyteller traveling there. And the stories were copied and read and told and grew.

And wisdom could now be retained and passed to the next generations and the community prospered.

And the stories became books and the books were copied and each new copy changed the story – by accident or on purpose – and the stories grew and grew.

But writing the stories by hand was a pain and took a long time. So better ways were invented and lots of copies of the book could now be printed at one time. And everyone could now read the stories about God and important things. And new ideas were shared and evolved and soon no one person could hold in their head everything there was to know in the world. And the stories grew. And the books huddled together in libraries for warmth on the cold nights.

And the people enjoyed having lots of books in one place and read as many as they could, and the stories grew.


As a publisher, I’m part of this long tradition and evolution. My job is to enable authors to share their stories with people who want to read them. Books are the conduit that take ideas from one person’s mind to another person’s.

I take an author’s words, and create a product to share and sell. About 16 years ago I learned how to create print books, and sent PDFs to the printers. Three years ago I taught myself how to create eBooks in ePub and Kindle formats, and discovered short run print-on-demand processes that make producing print books economic.

A couple of the online articles that have been shared here in the last day or so decry the commercialism of eBooks and predict that  ePub and Kindle are going to die soon. Naw, don’t think so.

Whether you like or loath and all the other big online eBook marketplaces like Kobo and Apple, the rise of this technology has made it possible for authors who would previously have submitted manuscripts to publishers, to actually self-publish and market their own books. Some are just earning pocket money on the side, others are making a decent living as writers and a few have made $millions. Dominic Crossan has described Jesus as a “paradigm shift in Jewish apocalyptic eschatology.” EBook production and online selling comes pretty comes to this as a game changer in my view.

If you have now, or can learn, the skills to self-publish, then you as a writer now have the power to share your stories with the whole world. I recommend that writers visit Joanna Penn’s website and especially listen to the podcast interviews she does with all sorts of people in book world, to keep up-to-date with the best and latest ideas.

I have found a niche providing a service to authors who have stories to tell and information to share, but want someone else to package their content into a book, make it available on a bunch of sales channels and help them to sell it. From one manuscript I create several products. For example, Anne Stephenson’s new book Adult Sexual Abuse in Religious Institutions ( is now available as an ePub, Kindle or PDF eBook, and as a print-on-demand book from CreateSpace and The NZ print edition is being produced now and will be available in two weeks. So that’s 5 products from one book. Another fairly easy option would be to record the text as an audiobook (to sell as a zipped collection of mp3 files), which opens up some more markets.

David, you are wanting to take this further by creating multimedia online books which combine text, images, sound, video, links…, and pose the question, what is a book?

I have skills to offer on producing and selling some specific formats of books. You have video creation and Mahara platform skills. My children have skills in musical performance, illustration, photography, film making, video and sound recording and editing – that make me proud and warm my heart. Their creativity inspires me to keep going in my little niche, and to ponder the next publishing developments.

I think that a book is any medium or product or artifact that enables people to share stories and ideas. And in the end that’s where the value lies. You can’t beat reading a novel and getting wrapped up in the characters’ world or reading a theology book and having a new idea hit and discomfort you like a Wellington wind gust. The format isn’t important.

Cheers, Philip

Email me your feedback to:

Video Celebrates NZ Methodist Theologian Jim Stuart

In this video, David Bell of KiwiConnexion  praises Jim Stuart’s approach to theology.

Click these links for information about and to order Jim’s book The John Wesley Code: Print edition or eBook editions.

Click here for a free Study Guide to the book.


Free Study Guide to Green, Ho! & Greens and Greys

A Free Study Guide by Rosalie Sugrue is now available for her books Green, Ho! & Greens and Greys.

The 9 page PDF guide is titled: A Novel approach to Bible Study: Personal Issues for Christians for Lent/Easter or whatever the Season.

Each of the 6 sessions looks at an important concept:
1. Values learnt in childhood
2. Faith in Youth
3. Sexual orientation
4. Suicide
5. Situation ethics and social justice
6. Mature faith

You will explore each issue by asking:
• Why did Molly do what she did?
• What would I have done in that situation?

Click this link to: Download your free PDF Study Guide


Are you ready for retirement? Bruce Woodley will get you started…

Preparing For Retirement Today: Dealing With The Financial And Physical Issues
By Bruce H. Woodley  eBook released 21 Feburary 2014.

PFRT_CreateSpace_cover_21_Feb_2014_250wClick the cover or this link for full details and to order.

Are you ready for retirement?

Bruce Woodley will get you started on planning for a financially secure, happy and healthy retirement. By exploring how to handle our savings and investments in a practical and common sense manner, both when we are working and in retirement, he shows that it is possible to reach our retirement goals and provide a future which is both fulfilling and enjoyable.

The book also outlines how relationships can be improved, by helping men and women to understand that they often have different approaches to financial planning and managing money. It also identifies how to provide for family legal matters.

Woodley shows how the new 60 is the old 40 and that we can take charge of our own future, rather than retiring from life. With a positive approach to living life to the full, we can look forward to living our dreams in our older years, with more life ahead of us. We can stay young at heart.

Fresh, easy, creative ideas for your group in 2014

Our new eBook Theme Scheme offers you creative ideas, activities, games, puzzles, plays and quizzes to help plan, organise and lead your group’s programmes. All are fun and practical, requiring minimal equipment, resources and time to prepare. Tap in to expert Rosalie Sugrue’s wealth of experience leading youth, adult and older people’s groups.

Gripping eBook for Christmas & 60 70 80 90 print edition has arrived

League_of_Lilith_cover_3Looking for a gripping eBook page-turner for Christmas?

Buy a copy of League of Lilith for yourself and another for a friend.

60 70 80 90 cover 100w The print edition of 60 70 80 90 is now in stock. A great way to help you start thinking about planning for your retirement. Check it out here




Cheers, Philip