Closing the Loop, Satisfaction Guaranteed

If you try this printer/copier paper and don't like it, I'll give you two free e-books!

Okay, so you might think that offer is a bit odd. After all, why promote paper using e-books? A little background may help. When I was growing up, my family was fairly involved with our church, and one of the things we did to raise money for the church was collect materials for recycling. I don't know how much money was involved, but we collected a lot of glass and newspaper back then. I won't underscore my age by saying how far back that was. Anyway, I grew up with a mind toward recycling. Also, my formative years included watching moon landings on TV (yep, there's that indication of age again) and the excitement of manned space exploration, and this – combined with recycling – helped me understand that we have limited resources on our "spaceship" (Earth). This leads me to being a bit fanatical about recycling, but now that I'm older I understand that it's not a perfect scenario. Just because I put something into the recycling bin doesn't mean it will actually be recycled. It may end up in landfill. In another country. I would like to do my small part to help fix this sad situation, beyond simply putting things into the recycling system. I don't have the wealth of Bill Gates to put into a cause like this, but I do have assets in the form of my books. That's where the idea for this offer comes from.

[Photo of printer with paper]

To make recycling work, we need to not only put things into the recycling system, we need to take them out. We need to "close the loop." Doing this means buying products that are made from recycled material. There are some significant obstacles to that, however. One is that it can be difficult to even find recycled products, and another is that recycled products often cost more than the non-recycled alternatives. Both of those problems will go away if people buy more recycled products, but this is a "chicken and egg" situation. If "buying recycled" is difficult and/or expensive, not enough people will do it to make it not difficult and/or expensive. This offer is designed to make it easier, and also to address the cost by offering a "guarantee" (albeit not directly a money-back guarantee).

So here's my offer: If you try one ream of 100% post-consumer recycled printer/copier paper for your daily printing needs and you're not satisfied with the quality, I will send you two of my books in the e-book format of your choice (.mobi for Kindle or ePUB for just about anything else). Which books will be up to me, as this will depend on whether or not they're enrolled in the exclusive "KDP Select" program at Amazon and possibly other factors. To make it easy to find, you can order online either item #756975 from Staples or #300435 from Office Depot, or stop in to a store and ask for the same product number from Staples or #819303 from Office Depot. If you're unhappy with the quality and want to take me up on my offer, just contact me for an email address to which you can send a copy of your invoice or receipt and let me know which format (.mobi or ePUB) you prefer. This offer is valid through April May, so I need to receive your documentation no later than 11:59pm April 30 May 31, Seattle-time. Fulfilling your request will be a manual process but I will definitely try to be prompt about it. (Offer extended one month to give more people an opportunity to take advantage of it!)

This is definitely not a case where I'm asking you to use something that I don't use myself. I use the paper listed above from Staples for all of my general printing needs (including kids' homework, company invoices, and much more). The only "virgin" paper I use is photo paper, brochure paper, check stock, and other specialty papers — and if I could get them in recycled form I would! This is also not a case where I earn anything from you buying those papers; the above links are not "affiliate" links, and I will have no way of knowing that you've purchased anything.

The print editions of Lesson One: Revolution! and Two Boys, Two Planets would cost, combined, about $25, while the e-book editions of those two together would be about $8. Whether you personally value my work according to those prices is up to you, of course, and you may consider the total value of what I'm offering lower than your cost of trying a ream of paper. However, hopefully you can appreciate the spirit of this offer and understand that you will also presumably find some value in the paper, even if you're not fully satisfied with it.

With all that in mind, please consider trying just one ream of 100% post-consumer recycled paper! And if you do, please send me a note to let me know. I won't have any other way of knowing, and I'd like to know if anyone took interest in this offer.

I strongly believe that all one-time-use disposable products (e.g., paper towels, paper plates, etc) should be made from recycled material to the greatest extent possible. If you'd like to see your options for buying those products, check out Green Forest, as they make a wide range of disposable paper products using recycled content. (And yes, that link is an Amazon Associate link.) Of course, there is more to recycling than paper. For a good example of a recycled plastic product, the B2P ballpoint pen from Pilot is made from 86% post-consumer plastic waste – recycled bottles, to be specific. I'm pretty picky about my pens, but I bought one on a whim while in one of the local office supply stores and I really like it, it's comfortable and writes nicely. You'll find it at Staples (item #343213 for a dozen), Office Depot (#728718, also a dozen), and many other places.

Thanks for helping to close the recycling loop!

About the Author
Stuart J. Whitmore is an author of fiction and nonfiction, as well as a photographer, technology developer, and more. If you enjoy reading his blog posts, you might also enjoy reading his books. Take a look at the books by Stuart J. Whitmore today, and download your copy of one that looks interesting to you!