And I guess that's what bothers me about small publishing houses. Yet, today, this day and time, it's not only the authors from small publishing houses that struggle to get their books in stores. What's the answer? How do we let readers know we're alive and well and living/writing/selling our books in Louisiana ... or Alabama ... or Mississippi ... or any other state? How do we get our books in stores? I know bookstores don't want to order anything they can't return. I don't even have a book to promote so I'm taking it on myself to worry for the rest of you. :) Actually, I got quite discouraged on your behalf searching for the four books I want to read. I wanted to tear my hair and scream:
WHY AREN'T THEY IN THE STORES?
I know I can order from Amazon or from the publisher, but I like walking into bookstores and finding what I want. I used to love sales racks but now they look threatening. I look at the huge bins of half-price books and feel scared about the future of publishing as well as the future of our bookstores. I went to our local library today and saw books less than three years old being purged from the shelves to make room for new purchases. Something about that seems ridiculous to me. It's like we're on speed dial. We may run out of shelf space but what happens when we run out of trees. These purged hardbacks are being sold for fifty cents or three for a buck. What's happening? And when's it going to end?
I don't like it. It doesn't make me want to sit down to write a 75,000 word book. It brought back memories of how my little category romance hit the shelves and within a blink of an eye disappeared, never to be mentioned again.
So, what's your answer. Beef up promotion? How? Take publishing into your own hands? And then what? Is there any money to be made in writing any more? How? Should we even worry about getting our books in bookstores?
As you can see, I have a lot of questions but no answers. And it's possible I know just enough to be dangerous. :) I do know that for the past two weeks, I've searched for a couple of award winning books by a small press and couldn't find them anywhere. I also searched for a couple of mysteries by a traditional publisher and they weren't in bookstores either.
I guess the big lesson here is that a writer really has to have a love for writing to keep at it, huh?
And I don't like speed dial.