A Novel Idea: Saving Independent Publishers, One Pre-order at a Time

vernon downsJaime Clarke’s new novel, Vernon Downs, will be published in 2014 by Roundabout Press. But you don’t have to wait ’til then — Roundabout will ship the book directly to you in December.

The catch?

Don’t preorder the book on Amazon — order directly from the publisher. You can read Jaime’s personal message at his aptly named website, http://pleasedontbuymybookonamazon.com/.

A disclaimer here: Jaime and his wife Mary are friends, and also co-owners of Newtonville Books,  an independent bookstore here in Boston which I like to link to (you may have noticed). But even if Jaime weren’t a friend (and a great writer, and a great curator of the written word — see Baum’s Bazaar), I’d still be writing about his excellent plan. It’s a gutsy move that’s gotten some press, and I hope it reaches a wider audience.

If you order Vernon Downs directly from Roundabout before its official April release, perks abound:

1. You’ll receive your copy in the mail in December — five months early.

2. You can enter the name of your favorite independent bookstore in the Special Instructions section at checkout, and Roundabout will send 50% of the monies (excluding shipping) to that store.

3. Jaime is forgoing all royalties until April, so your entire purchase supports independent publishing and bookselling.

And, as a special treat, if you order before midnight (EST) on October 28th, Roundabout will send you an audio clip of Chris Cooper (!) reading a selection from Vernon Downs. I’ve been pretty much entirely in love with since Chris Cooper October Sky, so . . . yeah.

I’m excited. I hope you are too.

If you have any other great ideas or news items about saving independent presses, please share! 

4 thoughts on “A Novel Idea: Saving Independent Publishers, One Pre-order at a Time

  1. You may very well have seen this article, Carolyn, but I’ll share it here anyway in case (or in case any of your readers might be interested). http://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/2013/10/13/indie-bookstores-hang-owning-one-becomes-new-fantasy-career/mECgvUmqINWv19srlKJhZL/story.html

    I’m seeing a slow movement percolating to save indie stores…was it just a few weeks ago that a number of well known writers were spending a weekend day at a different store..? I had read something about the campaign.

    I recently came up with an idea just for myself. I struggle a lot with motivating myself to exercise, but there’s a lovely indie book store (and cafe) that’s 2.5 miles from us. I decided that I would walk there x number of times a week, and after a certain number I would reward myself with a book 🙂

    • That’s a great idea, Cecilia! I wish Newtonville Books were just a little closer to us — our little dude is too small to walk that far right now.

      I think there’s a plan to get authors into their local bookstores to sell books on Small Business Saturday — pretty sure I read about that in Shelf Awareness.

  2. I have to admit to buying books from Amazon, but I also buy from our local independent book store, BookPeople, which seems to be thriving. I love that place. This is an interesting tactic of Clarke’s. I will certainly think about doing this.

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