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How can publishers that undercut bookstores by selling to online retailers at a discount expect those same bookstores to invest so much effort in their authors?

For the most part though, I don't care about readings. I'm glad when they pull in money for the shops, but with a few exceptions, I've never wanted to hear an author's speaking voice, or even meet them in such a setting. Kinda ruins it for me.

Posted by Dougsf | October 22, 2008 3:32 PM

Mysteries shouldn't even be published in hardcover. Mysteries should be printed in mass-market paperback only, with lurid covers. I'd feel dirty reading Carl Hiassen in hard covers.

Posted by Fnarf | October 22, 2008 3:39 PM

Yikes! I actually really like Stabenow's books, too. She seems like the kind of author who would shut this crap down if possible. Wonder if she knows the full story...

Posted by leek | October 22, 2008 4:42 PM

@3: You make a good point. But lame as some publishers' marketing tactics may be, many authors feel just as hamstrung by them as the bookstores. Like musicians who struggle to get signed to major record labels, authors work hard to get published -- and then they're often dismayed by the hoops their new masters insist they jump through. But most authors (especially the new ones) feel helpless to protest, since that could mean falling back into obscurity and poverty.

It would be great to see authors stand up to their publishers and refuse to participate in these cheap schemes. Maybe it's time for a sea change, like what's going on now in the music industry.

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Posted by Broxx | October 22, 2008 6:09 PM

"On one hand there is the feeling of loss."

On the other, grow the fuck up and welcome to the real world. And don't expect to be taken very seriously by actually spouting sentences like that.

Posted by Some cheese with your whine? | October 22, 2008 7:31 PM

("Sweet mystery of extortion, at last I have foooound you...")

And thanks for bringing this to my attention after the Seattle Mystery Bookshop made it public. How many independent booksellers are left?

Posted by Amelia | October 22, 2008 9:27 PM

It is kinda rediculous, but I can understand it too. Authors often have to prioritize visits on tightly packed promotion junkets. It effects Big Box stores as well is independents.

Posted by Bubbles | October 22, 2008 11:30 PM
Posted by leek | October 25, 2008 12:33 AM

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