CriticalFumble.net Forums  

Go Back   CriticalFumble.net Forums > Fan Forums > Greywalker

Greywalker Unofficial fan forum for the Greywalker series by Kat Richardson.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-07-2009, 09:52 PM
Harper
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Underground Hardcover is Going Away

Hey guys. This is just FYI: for inventory reasons the big chains are dropping Underground. Most chain stores will not be carrying it after this week and some have already shipped theirs back to the warehouse. This means that most of the hardcovers will be remaindered (sold at huge discounts to jobbers and companies like Half-Price Books, or pulped and thrown away) and the mass market edition won't be out until August when Vanished is released. You'll still be able to get it by order from shops or online and probably from some independent shops like Mysterious Galaxy in San Diego and Seattle Mystery Bookshop in Seattle. I really don't know what will be done with the remaindered books. If I can buy some of them and sell them myself I will, but that requires storage and cash I may not have when they come available.

So: if you don't have it and can't wait until August for the paperback, get a move on or order it. If you're not in a rush or don't want to pop for a hardcover, the whole series is being issued in the standard small format this summer, starting with Greywalker in June, Poltergeist in July, and finally Underground in August. I don't know the cover price, but I'm guessing $7 or $8. There will be no more trade paperbacks after that, just hardcovers and small paperbacks.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01-07-2009, 10:16 PM
Sakutian Sakutian is offline
Bona fide Fumbler
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Silver Spring, MD
Posts: 404
Sakutian is on a distinguished road
Default

It's kind of sad that they're getting all pupled up, poor little homeless books. I wish I could go out and bu them all.
__________________
It is better to chase your dreams down the street and fall flat on your face than to sit on your porch and watch them pass you by.

Last edited by Sakutian; 01-07-2009 at 10:25 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-08-2009, 03:47 AM
Hagelrat
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

It never came out in hardcover over here, just what I always think of as "american Size" paperback, bigger than our paperbacks, smaller than our hardcovers, your vbooks and C.E.Murphy's all seem to be that size, and the import versions of Richelle's books.
Sorry for the books though, the idea of destroying books always gives me Farenheit 451 shudders.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-08-2009, 08:19 PM
Harper
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Hagelrat: The UK size is a bit smaller than the US trade paperback and about 30% larger than our "mass market" paperback (the "pocket book" size, but I can't remember if that's an A size or a B size.) Hardcovers seem to be about the same size in both countries. I don't know if there are any plans to re-format to the smaller UK size in the future. Piatkus/Little/Brown seems happy with them as they are.

In general:
My agent says they won't actually remainder the books until Fall, since they need to have stock in the publisher's warehouse for any orders that do come in, but they will be hard to find in the chain stores unless the individual store wants to stock them and then it will probably be only 1 copy of the hardcover until the small paperback comes out.

Most hardcover remainders go out to the deep-discount stores like Half-Price and sometimes to B&N's discount arm where they turn up for $5-8 a copy. It makes the situation kind of weird when you can pick up a hardcover that's just over a year old for less than the price of the new paperback, but that's how it tends to work. The downside for a writer is that remaindered books make no money for us (well, they make us a percentage of whatever the publisher sold them for minus the cost but that often works out to a few cents per copy and if the publisher dumped them at cost just to get rid of them, we get nothing) and publishers don't really like to throw resources away so if they remainder most of the books printed, they get a bit... annoyed.

The decision to remainder books is usually prompted by things like the introduction of a new format or a serious failure of sales, but it's inevitable that hardcovers will end up remaindered eventually.

Currently, most publishers and stores participate in "the returns system" which allows bookstores to order more books than they sell and return the unsold ones for credit. Generally the over-order is to insure that there are never 0 books in the chains' warehouses. Smaller bookstores usually buy only what they think they can sell and return only what totally flops for them, because they have to make every inch of space in their store profitable. Chains have multiple stores to balance out the dollars-per-square foot a bit so the extra inventory is worth it to them. Big chains try to cover all their base by having stock ready to go even if they don't need it all and using it as a monetary buffer against the next round of purchases. That situation is currently causing small publishers a lot of trouble since the publisher pays the cost of shipping both ways and the cost of restocking at their distribution warehouses. Bigger companies do the same, but as with the big chain stores, they have more wiggle room.

Still, the cost of printing, shipping and warehousing books has to be taken into consideration, so when a book is no longer likely to pull in a lot of sales in hardcover, it will get remaindered to make room for another book.

The whole remaindering hardcovers sounds totally insane, but there's a method to the madness and it's part of the returns system. At first you think, "if they didn't think they could sell them all, why did they print so many?" and the answer is: so they have enough books to ship to store A without having to wait for store B to return some. So eventually you have extra books lying around that have been sent to Store A and returned, then sent to Store B and returned and so on. So long as the number of books sold in hardcover is a big percentage of the total printed, the publisher is actually pretty happy. That percentage is called "sell through."

Sell-through is a good measure of the actual success of a book versus the anticipated success. A hardcover with a 50% sell-through is considered pretty decent. 70% is amazing and everyone has champagne and loves the book. 20% is sad and 10% is pathetic. Slightly different numbers will apply for paperbacks, which are cheaper to print, ship, and store, but also have a smaller profit margin.

Right now, we're guessing Underground has sold something like... 8,000 copies in hardcover out of a printing of about 15,000 (I think that's what they told me.) So that's already better than 50% sell-through. It's not bad at all. Now if it's really 30,000 copies, it kind of stinks. But--here's the kicker--this particular book already earned back the money the publisher paid me for it, so even with a crummy sell-through on the hardcover, they're happy. They did better than break-even when the book was still new and there's more to come when the smaller paperback hits the shelves this summer. This sort of happy circumstance isn't true for every author and every book but in this case it is, so... the remaindering isn't such a nightmare. The loss of display space is disappointing to me when I've got a new story out that may attract new readers, but it's not going to kill me.

The major point of the announcement was to let you guys know that this book is going to be harder to find for a while and you might have to order it if you can't wait for the paperback.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-10-2009, 05:22 AM
Hagelrat
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

wow, I love these insights into the business side of books i love.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-11-2009, 03:09 PM
Sakutian Sakutian is offline
Bona fide Fumbler
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Silver Spring, MD
Posts: 404
Sakutian is on a distinguished road
Default

That is pretty intersting. You know there's something I've always been curious about in regards to authors and book sales. I'm just wondering how much of the money actually makes it back to the author? I mean publishers, agents, and retailers must take a pretty good chunk of it right?
__________________
It is better to chase your dreams down the street and fall flat on your face than to sit on your porch and watch them pass you by.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-12-2009, 01:13 AM
Harper
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Depends on the contract, the book, and how many copies have already been sold, but royalties (which is how we make our money most of the time) start about 6.5% on a bad deal and go up as high as 15%. Most of us make 8-10% of the cover price for every book sold at standard retail. It's commonly in the ballpark of 45-cents for standard paperback, 70-cents for trade paperback and $2.50 for hardcover.

There are a bunch of modifiers, elevators, exceptions, special cases and so on, but that's the very broad estimate. When you hear of an author making a big sale, like, "Stephen King signs million-dollar conrtact for Cujo II!" what he's getting is an advance against the estimated royalties the publisher thinks they can get. It's like a payday loan without the loan shark.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-12-2009, 03:59 PM
Sakutian Sakutian is offline
Bona fide Fumbler
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Silver Spring, MD
Posts: 404
Sakutian is on a distinguished road
Default

Interesting, thanks for answering my question.
__________________
It is better to chase your dreams down the street and fall flat on your face than to sit on your porch and watch them pass you by.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:22 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright on all original post text belongs to the poster.