As I was updating AAR Saturday, Scarlett came downstairs and said, “I have a sad.” (Kids today aren’t sad anymore, I guess. they have sad). It turns out she’d just discovered what I already knew: Borders was officially through. The closest one to our home was already gone anyway, a casualty of the April carnage (and apparent last ditch attempt to save the company). But all of us still occasionally shopped at one in Park Meadows, a mall about thirty minutes away. Both stores that we frequented always seemed to be full of people – and not just people drinking coffee; there was always a line to buy books too. On a global level, there clearly were not enough of them.
I’m sure I’m part of the problem. Since getting a nook color for Christmas, I buy virtually all my books from Barnes and Noble, and nearly always in the electronic version when possible. When it isn’t possible, I usually go to the brick and mortar B&N right by my work, or order online with free two-day shipping. I used to buy more from Borders, but their Web site and shipping took forever, so I tended to use them only if I had a really good coupon and wasn’t in a hurry.
Update: This Publisher’s Weekly article seems to make it official.
As yet unconfirmed reports are trickling in that Dorchester is planning to cease publishing print books starting September 1 and become an e-publisher only.
Dorchester has long been admired for their willingness to take on different time periods — in short, for their willingness to try to do something different — and for the fact that for a long time they were the only publisher of paranormal romances. I’ve heard of problems going back years of payment issues for authors, but they’ve always managed to pull it out and keep on.
But now, apparently, they are in serious trouble. Due to persistent unresolved payment issues, RWA denied the publisher the right to hold a publisher highlight session at the Orlando conference. They were, in fact, not officially represented.
Dorcester editorial staff have always been spoken well of in the industry and I know, as Lynn reported, that there were a multitude of fingers crossed at the conference that they would survive. I was one of them.
Do you have any confirmation you can share? Does anybody know what will happen to contracted books? I hope that authors will not lose as a result of this. I’m afraid that readers will.
- Sandy AAR