Friday, February 22, 2008

Now it seems the books have been sold ...

With all sorts of scenarios running through my head, and yet more tears, after I had calmed down I checked my emails and found a reply from Richard which reads as follows, together with my original message to him that I sent last night:

"If they have I will be just a tad annoyed - I have never signed their release form, they never phoned me back and as far as remember they don't have your address! And we have not had any notification of such, or any discussion on what the reduced return might be! So officially they have sold them as far as I'm concerned! Hopefully...??


----- Original Message -----
To: Richard Fitt
Sent: Thursday, February 21, 2008 10:29 PM
Subject: re Gardners returning books
Have not been able to do much ringing these past few weeks as I had a weeks holiday earlier this month, but the numbers in stock seem to continue dropping anyway. It was 112 when I got back last weekend, but I noticed tonight that it has dropped somewhat worryingly to 41. I doubt whether book stores have ordered that many in the last week, so have Gardners finally sent some back to me I wonder? Have they been in touch at all to confirm this with you and can I expect a parcel in the next day or so? I sincerely hope not, as I have enough to worry about at the moment without this - you and me both I expect though!

I have tomorrow off so will try and give you a call.


Having spoken to him has though put my mind at rest, as it seems highly likely that the books have actually been sold. Richard explained to me that Gardners have certain policies that they have to adhere to when sending books back - first they need to obtain authorisation from the publisher in question. A request is usually sent by email, and followed up by a form that is sent in the post for the publisher to sign. Richard though never signed this form and sent it back, and so officially the return has not been authorised - only 'in principal' which is of course not the same thing.

He did offer to ring his contact at Gardners, to find out what has happened, but thinks in the circumstances that it is best to let sleeping dogs lie, and although a part of me would very much like to know what has happened to these 70 odd books, I think he is right, that getting in touch might be tempting fate and cause ripples that would be ill advised.

There are several things that may have happened here - Waterstones may have finally decided to take the book as core stock and have sent it out so various stores, none of which are yet showing on their website. Borders may have done the same, or maybe I just got very lucky. Whatever it is though it seems more likely than not that these books have been sold, and until I hear otherwise I can only assume that this is the case.

It may be worth be getting in touch with Justin Hutchinson I suppose, the Waterstones independent author advisor to see if he knows anything, but in a way it is quite exciting not to know - it would be nice though to write some grand press releases detailing the exciting news!

I am not then about to give up quite yet, but have somehow or other managed to find some more fight. For the moment though I have the village newsletter to complete, an exercise bike to go and take things out on, and then this afternoon, some book shops to ring. I wish I knew what to make of all of this, and could understand more about the dynamics at play here, but I guess if I knew how the universe worked, I would be ascended, and I am a long way from achieving that, so I can but hope and pray for the best.

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