Saturday, January 7, 2012

Book Release One Month From Today

The New American Homestead will finally be available one month from today, on February 7th. Amazon and Barnes & Noble already have it in their catalog for pre-order. I will be talking to Knoxville area booksellers and urging them to add the book to their inventory. Having been in the book business in several roles over a period of roughly 20 years, I am always fascinated by the factors that make or break book sales. For example, common sense would suggest that the best place to sell your book would be a big store with a lot of traffic, such as Barnes & Noble. However, it actually turns out that you will land more sales in a smaller store, such as an independent book shop. One obvious explanation is that in a larger store your book gets lost among the hundreds of other pretty dust jackets clamoring for the reader's attention. But there is another advantage to smaller bookstores, from the author's point of view. Small shops must necessarily limit their inventory, and thus carefully choose titles that they think their patrons will want to buy. Ergo, the customer arrives in the shop expecting the offerings to have been "screened" for the value of their content, placing the lucky authors at an immediate advantage.

Because my books are nonfiction, they will appeal only to people with some prior interest in the topic covered. For this reason, a specialty store, such as a garden shop, is a great place to offer gardening books. Aquarium books do well in aquarium shops, too.

E-publishing, of course, may change all that, but printed books will be around for a while yet.

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