Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Another frustrating aspect of being a midlist writer

Earlier tonight, I had occasion to go into my local Barnes & Noble store.  While there, I fell victim to a trap that ensnares many writers:  I walked back to the SF section to see how many of my books were in stock.

Remember that on May 29, about nine weeks ago, No Going Back appeared. That novel was, I believe, my best to date, and all the reviews of it--few though they may be--have been glowing.  So, I thought there was a decent chance my local store would have one or two on the shelves.

Nope.  No copies of No Going Back.  Nada.  I have five novels out, and all that my local store had on offer was a single paperback copy of Children No More.

This kind of information is deeply demoralizing, but it is also beyond my control.  As I have to remind myself constantly, all I can do is write the best books I can. 

Still, this sucks.


6 comments:

Dan Higdon said...

If it makes you feel any better, Austin B&N stores usually have your titles in stock.

Even better, they sometimes only have an odd distribution of them, pointing to a likelihood that people buy them. Are you sure that the store you were in hadn't simply sold through all their copies? ;)

Dan Higdon said...

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that there is a video game programmer's version of the same effect - finding a game you slaved away on for over a year in some store's bargain bin. It's especially demoralizing when it's a title you'd put a colossal amount of crunch time into.

Horray for career choice affirming facts. :/

Mark said...

Thanks, Dan. I honestly don't know if they were out or not stocking my books.

Mark said...

Yeah, I can see that.

Anonymous said...

Mark, I've seen at least 1 copy of NGB in several different bookstores here in northeast Ohio in the past couple weeks. I had pre-ordered it at a local Books-a-Million, but now they seem to be carrying it. One store had trade paper editions of all of the previous Jon & Lobo books too - that was good to see! If you are still coming to Cleveland in the fall, will you be doing any signings?
- old aggie

Mark said...

Thanks for that news. It's great to hear. I will definitely be in Cleveland for Bouchercon but currently don't have any signings lined up.

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