On February 26, we received a box of books from a publishing house filled with titles that don’t go on sale (strict on-sale dates, not just pub dates) until the middle of April. That’s more than a month and a half away.
There are a few problems with this, two small and one big:
- Storage in bookstores is always at a premium, so finding a place to house books we can’t sell for six weeks is an issue.
- When mid-April rolls around, will we even remember these titles and where we stashed them?
- With 30-day terms, we will be expected to pay for the books weeks before we are even given a chance to sell them.
We appreciate some lead time with titles, but this is excessive, and the payment issue is notable.
Publishers, please re-think sending out books more than a week or two out from the street date. If you must send them further in advance, please extend payment terms by an appropriate amount. Otherwise, we are in effect paying you for you to rent space in our office! And that is not smart by any reckoning.