When a small bookshop in Cuba Street became available in 1988, accountant Robert Burch “took the plunge”, and launched his new career He changed the name to Arty Bee’s Bookshop and six months later purchased a second shop in Cambridge Terrace. Both shops have relocated several times over the last 22 years, in each case to larger or better locations.
Success stories in self-publishing are much more rare than media hype would suggest; realistically an author must know their market and fill reader expectations.
With the publishing industry taking fewer risks and trying to contract rather than expand their lists, this is the time when self -publishers can find gaps in the market to fill. Many of those authors turning to self-publishing were initially published by some of the big imprints, but now find themselves creating their own audiences, their own customers.
Atlantis Books, one of the few New Zealand Bookshops carrying both new and used stock, opened in Rotorua on April 5. More than 300 people checked the store out on its first day, attracted by a More FM crew dressed as superheroes broadcasting from outside the store.
Andrew Tizzard follows up last week’s The Read feature with a note on his company’s policies:
You might like to mention our policy here at Nationwide: We have no minimum order value.
Orders over $50 (total invoice value excl gst) are freight free, as are released back-orders.
Orders under $50 are subject to a maximum freight fee of just $3 (that in most cases does not cover our courier cost but helps to off-set it.) Of course whenever we can we will try to collate a 'one book customer order' with a released back-order or rep order so that we can remove the freight fee.
Most book retailers go out of their way to avoid freight charges or small order surcharges for special order titles their customer’s request. That’s because customers are resistant to any charge that is over and above the cost of the book. Retailers, in turn, are reluctant to pass those charges on to avoid sending customers away to order online.
This chicken or egg situation has become a bigger concern for book retailers recently as it seems an increasing number of distributors are imposing surcharges.
The White Ships has been an unlikely bestseller for Capital Books’ Tim Skinner. “You would have thought an account of New Zealand’s WW1 hospital ships would be a specialist title with a limited audience, but we have sold a surprising number.”
Maritime historian Gavin McLean’s spirited account of the two USS Co vessels the Maheno and Marama converted into hospital ships in 1915 was helped by a wealth of archive documentation and a very human drama that occurred on the Maheno: were nurses entitled to officer status and the privileges of rank?
Twenty one pallets of book stock have just moved up the South Island from Dunedin to Oxford in Canterbury; after many years of handling their own book distribution, Otago University Press has opted to have Nationwide distribute their books.
Other changes of distribution have come about from Harper Collins’ relocation of warehousing to their Australian base; AUP have found a new home with Craig Potton and David Bateman is now the distributor for Bridget Williams Books and Josh Easby’s Hurricane Press.
Ross Stewart’s funeral was held in Invercargill yesterday, before his interment at Winton Cemetery.
One of the original Paper Plus owners, Ross and his wife Kath bought the store off his parents in 1983. He was an early enthusiast for the Paper Plus brand and a well known figure in the Winton community as sportsman and business owner. Ross was profiled in a November 2010 issue of The Read.
Cruise ships in Kaikoura are a relatively new development, but one that makes local Paper Plus owner Mark Fissenden happy. “When a cruise ship is in town we see an increase in trade between 10 and 30 percent for the day.” His only gripe: Kaikoura gets just 10 or so cruise ships a season, and more of the smaller ones with 250 rather than 1000 passengers on board.