A Nice Note about my Digital Book

February 11th, 2016 | Posted in General

TMAoC-DigitalI received this the other day via email:

Dear Tom,

I started caricature wood carving about 6 months ago. Recently reading the blog of Don Mertz, a well known caricature woodcarver, he highly recommended your book. Not wanting to figure out how to free up yet another slot on my bookcases (as I’m still struggling with where to put Volume 3 of Walt Kelly’s Pogo) I decided to do a search for a digital copy of your book, knowing this would be futile. Much to my delight and surprise I found it on your web site.

I know the risk involved in producing non-DRM ebooks, so I want to give you heartfelt thanks for making this available. I can’t wait to start reading this tonight. Thank you so much.

With great respect,

Gerry Finkel

My response:

Hi Gerry,

    I put the DRM free book out there because of people like you. Yes, I knew that it would be pirated (and has been) and downloaded for free by low-life’s who think they are entitled to anything they want for free on the internet, but I also knew that there are honest people in the world who understand the time, effort, and decades of work and learning that went into the book and who would be willing to pay a reasonable fee to buy a legitimate digital copy to show their support of those efforts. Thank YOU for being one of those people.

    I hope you enjoy and get something from the book. Thanks again for your support, and for defeating online piracy by purchasing legitimate digital copies of books and other creative works. You rock.


I occasionally get notes from the other side of this coin that go something like this:


… like I didn’t already know the book is out there on any number of unscrupulous websites and can be downloaded free, or that I care they did just that. That’s exactly the reason I have a digital PDF version available for about the same amount you would spend on lunch somewhere. Offering a legitimate copy for sale is not trying to trick people into paying for something they could get for free. It is allowing them the opportunity to buy what they might be quite happy to pay for DESPITE the fact they know they can get it for free. People like Gerry know to pay for it is supporting the time and effort that went into creating the book. That’s the difference in thinking between the think-they-are-entitled internet generation and those who actually understand the value of someone’s hard work. The former think anyone trying to get them to pay for something are the ones who are doing wrong and trying to pull a fast one. The latter understand that paying for something is what will keep those that create the something they liked creating new somethings they will like, and that is worth paying a little something for.

I have brief comment in the beginning of the digital copy of the book thanking those that paid for it for buying a legitimate copy, and educating those that did not (if they ended up with a copy of the actual PDF from some pirate site as opposed to the copies that are physical scans of the printed book, which aren’t very good) about how important it is to support the work of creators, and that if they enjoy the book to consider buying a legitimate copy on my website. After getting Gerry’s letter I am going to start sending a personal email to anyone who buys the digital copy and thank them directly. It’s something I should have been doing from the beginning.


  1. Jose D. says:

    I purchased the physical book and always wished I could have it digital on my iPad so I could have it propped up next to me while I’m drawing. I’m gonna buy this with the quickness (don’t mind paying twice for this great book). Thanks for making it available on digital!

  2. Durrell Odom says:

    Hey Tom. I purchased both the book and the PDF becuase I believe they’re both valuable for my new found interest in caricature drawing. Thanks again for sharing the knowledge.

  3. Chip says:

    I purchsed your book when it first came out with an original sketch and read it through a few times. I too then purchased the PDF for my tablet. Its nice to have both. Too bad people have to steal it when it is so reasonable. Hope you are doing well with the book. I think i have most books on the subject and yours is the best!

  4. Neil says:

    Tom, I bought the book and encourage my students to do the same. I doubt the pirated copies come with the awesome personalized caricatures! Thanks for the insights and instruction. Great work!


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