Saturday, May 2, 2015

Sales

It's rough running a small publishing operation these days.  I've long lamented the lack of foreign sales.  When I was publishing Science Fiction Trails  we had about 20% sales from Europe.  Over time I watched that percentage steadily decline until it reached zero.  The books we've put out over the past few years haven't had any foreign sales. Steampunk Trails never had any foreign sales other than a couple of ebook downloads.  I know the EU has had a lot of problems and I'm sure that's a factor. It's also possible nobody likes the crap we publish.  All I know is that, with rising costs and thin margins, losing 20% of sales is rough.  

American sales have been declining as well, just not quite as steep.  The American story is a little more complicated as we have more distribution outlets in the US. The sales at Amazon have dropped off, but other venues have actually increased a little.

It's a rough business.  What it all means is anyone's guess.  I'm predicting sales will continue to decline. We can't compete with other distractions for folks.  I'll be surprised if I'm still publishing anything two years from now.  I certainly have no plans for any new anthologies this year.  In the past we put out one and often two books a year.  There won't be any this year. If sales continue to remain stagnant, there won't be any new books from us next year, either.  I don't know how our experience compares to other smaller presses.  But I certainly am not optimistic about the future.

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