‘Stone Garden’ Publisher Announces Milestone Sales of 20,000 Books

LOS ANGELES—The publishers of Armenia’s first commercial travel guide reached a milestone in August with the news that they have sold 20,000 Armenia-subject books since the company’s founding in 1999.

The publisher, Stone Garden Productions, specializes in Armenia books and photography, and has released titles such as “The Stone Garden Guide: Armenia and Karabagh” (2006); “Edge of Time: Traveling in Armenia and Karabagh” (2001) and “Out of Stone (1999).”

The 20,000-book milestone happens to coincide with the company’s ten-year anniversary. Author-photographers Robert Kurkjian, Ph D and Matthew Karanian, Esq., founded Stone Garden Productions in 1999 after they had each lived and worked in Armenia for five years.

Bedros Safarian, the company’s business manager, says that he’s thrilled with the achievement, and is excited about future projects. “The Armenia market is very small, and to have sold 20,000 copies to the community is an outstanding achievement.”

Sales are not limited to the Armenian-American community, however. According to Karanian, the company’s co-founder, non-Armenians throughout the world have purchased their books. “We’ve shipped books to every continent except Antarctica,” says Karanian.

And their Armenia titles have been promoted on an array of media ranging from Rick Steves on National Public Radio to publications such as CNN Traveller, Geographical, and Photo District News. Their Armenia photographs have been exhibited at prominent venues including at the World Affairs Council in San Francisco, at Los Angeles City Hall and at private galleries in New York, and Washington, DC.

Kurkjian and Karanian got their start with the hard cover art photography book “Out of Stone.” The art book retailed for $55 in 1999, and the after-market price for a good used copy has today quadrupled to more than $200. The author-photographers launched Stone Garden Productions as a publishing company that would be dedicated to portraying Armenian subjects that a larger commercial publisher might not consider.

In 2001, Stone Garden Productions became the first publisher to release a stand-alone commercial travel guide to Armenia and Karabagh. The current version of the travel guide, “The Stone Garden Guide: Armenia and Karabagh,” is a best selling title and winner of three national book awards. It is one of the only guides to strongly promote environmental conservation.

 

Stone Garden Productions plans to publish a new art photography book on Armenia and Karabagh, in addition to its numerous ongoing photography projects. To learn more about the company, visit www.StoneGardenProductions.com. To purchase a postpaid copy of their latest travel guide to Armenia, send $24.95 to Stone Garden Productions, PO Box 7758; Northridge, CA 91327. Postage is free to addresses in the US. Shipping outside the US is $10.

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