Bedazzled Ink interview: January 2008

Information about publishers of GLBT fiction.

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Re: Bedazzled Ink interview: January 2008

Postby FranW » 28 Mar 2010, 09:09

carrietierney wrote:I got some interesting reports from the Xena Con.

First off, Mindancer said a lot of people were amazed that we were not only selling books by authors published by other publishers but we let any author put book postcards, flyers, and bookmarks on our table. We also helped the organizers of the Bard Banquet by handing out flyers and telling people how to get tickets, etc.

I remember a couple of years ago at the same Con, Cavalier Press had a little table selling only Cavalier Press books. Mindancer approached the table and chatted with them. The fun part was, when the seller found out who Mindancer was she said she'd been wanting to buy Mindancer's childrens book, so Mindancer sold it to her and sold copies to a couple of other people browsing the Cavalier table. Mindancer was amused by the irony but felt a little guilty and bought one of the Cavalier books.

A little later our boss went to the table and asked if she could leave flyers for our books. We weren't allowed to because, I mean, we were a rival publisher. Ironically, Cavalier Press went out of business just a couple of months later.

Why shouldn't we let authors get the most they can out of their book publishing experience? It doesn't matter who their publishers are. An author has control over her own writing career and we want to help her succeed. Her current publisher is just that, only her current publisher.

Any publisher that wouldn't allow their authors to let us sell their books at the Convention is denying their writers an opportunity for making a bit more profit off a book than they usually receive and deny them the social opportunity of interacting with readers without also worrying about peddling their books at the same time. Mindancer said there were long lines at the autograph table and the authors (Susan X Meagher, KG MacGregor, Mary D, I. Christie, Ri) seemed to be having a lot of fun.

We love to help authors. It's always authors first for us.
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Re: Bedazzled Ink interview: January 2008

Postby FranW » 28 Mar 2010, 09:10

carrietierney wrote:A couple of more reports from the Con that you may find interesting since the subjects have been discussed here.

First off, I guess a lot of people asked which books were Ubers (some didn't know the term Uber and asked for books where the main characters looked like Xena and Gabrielle). I guess the boss had to thumb through the books we didn't publish to be able to answer that question.

So there is still a group of readers out there who are only interested in reading Ubers.

Another thing is a cautionary tale about getting it right the first time. Three of the authors Mary D, KG MacGregor and Mindancer all had second or third editions of books sitting on the table. Mary D's and MacGregor's were completely rewritten versions of previously published versions. So many people asked how they were different from the other editions that, I guess, we pasted signs that said things like "new chapters" "completely rewritten" on the book holders. My esteem colleagues even had the authors autograph these signs.

The new never been published before titles by Mary D and MacGregor flew off the table and were sold out within hours of the first day. MacGregor even had more copies Fed-Exed and they sold out. The new editions of the older books did not sell as well. For some reason, the authors had ordered a bunch more copies of the new editions than the never published before titles.

Mindancer has no illusions that the latest editions of her Emoria books are going to sell as well as the previous editions. She just wanted to finally publish definitive editions of books she considers the worst examples of her writing and aren't worth the effort to make "perfect."

She also has maintained a very low profile in the last few years, so she attracted a lot of new readers at the Con. She said people who bought her first Emoria book on Friday had started reading it that night and came around to tell her how much they enjoyed it. This kind of goes with the idea that it doesn't matter how long a book has been around, it's always new to someone.

The last thing has to do with rights. An author approached the table and asked us what rights we acquire. We said "trade paperback rights." I guess we had to repeat it several times until it sank it. It seems this author has sold the movie rights to her book and was looking for a publisher. She said the other publishers wouldn't even look at it because they acquired all rights . . .

I will repeat this. The author has sold the movie rights and these publishers didn't see the free publicity this would automatically generate for the book if the movie is actually produced. Book tie-ins of movies are a big business.

The book is on a subject we don't usually read or publish. Hmmm. So what did we tell her . . . What do you think? "Send us the manuscript and we'll take a look at it."

Businesses that are so rigid that they can't bend even a bit risk being shattered to pieces.
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Re: Bedazzled Ink interview: January 2008

Postby FranW » 28 Mar 2010, 09:10

carrietierney wrote:
sbarret wrote:interesting con stuff.

w/o naming names, can you give an idea how many books flew off the table for BI?

So I'm curious how your mileage varies ;-)

Well, since I'm the one who has to do all the reports, I happen to have the sales numbers in front of me.

Here are the top numbers of copies per title sold:

52
25 -- sold out - would have sold more if we had them
25
22 -- sold out - would have sold more if we had them
22 -- sold out - would have sold more if we had them

A ball park average for the rest of the titles sold is 15 copies.

Do you folks do tables at other cons?

This is the only Con we do since we're not really set up to sell books. We decided to create a shop called Bedazzled Book Peddler for the Xena Con because we knew the thousands of Xenites gathered there buy lots of books.

Here's a favorite story out of the Con. I guess there was a young women, a student maybe, from Austria. She couldn't use her card in the American ATMs so she was finding creative ways to get cash because I guess the other vendors had no problem taking her card. (Side note: since we only sell books once a year, we're not set up to take credit cards -- that may change next year if more authors send us books to sell)

Well, she got some cash and came to our table and bought a couple of books. She really wanted to buy more but she only had so much cash.

So anyway, the table was moved to the Bards Banquet Sunday night and she came up with more money and bought a couple of more books . . . You know what she did to get more cash? She sold a Xena T-shirt she had bought. A story like that makes you just kind of say "Wow."
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