FOR THE PAST HALF CENTURY, I've been collecting Guidebooks relating to Downeast Maine. The collecting has continued long after I got out of the book business and into the Internet game. I've amassed dozens of Guidebooks, many of which are, in some ways, very good.
In one very important way, however, all of them are lacking. Good as some are, not a single one claims to be complete. The idea of at least touching upon every point of interest in Downeast Maine has been just too daunting. Nobody has wanted to take it on.
One day I realized I knew how to achieve completeness—or something very close to it. My Eureka Moment made it clear that modern technology can render the formerly impossible possible. Near completeness could be mine by utilizing the Internet, Book Printing on Demand, and lots of Hard Work.
Right off, I was way ahead of the game. I had already compiled Downeast Maine's most comprehensive online guides (AppealingPublicPlace.com, DiningDowneast.com, SearchDowneast.com, CaptainD.com, UniqueDowneast.com, MaineCyberMall.com, PortsDowneast.com) and was endeavoring to improve upon each of them. I saw how I could (by just keeping on doing what I had been doing) develop an Online Travelog until it was all but complete and then publish it as a book. Publishing on Demand would make frequent updates financially feasible.
DowneastInDepth.com would draw its inspiration from Maine: A Guide Downeast, the landmark work prepared in the midst of the Great Depression by the Federal Writers' Project, Works Progress Administration. This wonderful Guidebook, gloriously optimistic, anticipated auto tourism by establishing a format involving several tours throughout the region. I would follow a similar format, but in far greater detail.
In lieu of federal financing, I would underwrite the project by accessing modest fees for Enhanced Listings—Listings in larger, bolder type with color photos and Links to Websites. (When I say modest, I mean really modest; everybody can easily afford Enhancement.) It's a helleva good deal. Besides appearing online, these Listings would be guaranteed exposure in the popular tabloid paper Discover Downeast Maine With Captain D, the three annual editions of which are distributed in more than 600 locations throughout Downeast Maine. Enhanced Listings in and of themselves are a fine form of advertising. The ultimate appearance in a book would provide advertisers a permanency available nowhere else.
I would encourage readers to suggest ways I could make the Downeast Information Travelog ever better and more complete. We would keep it going online as a Work in Progress until I was satisfied it was as good and complete as it can be. Not until then would I allow this book to be published. And when that day finally came, I would have far and away the Most Complete Visitor's Guide ever to honor Downeast Maine.
Richard W. Baker
aka Captain D