my books

City of Ruin – US Edition

They’re here and looking rather fiery. And, as you may have noticed, straight into trade edition like quite a few of the newer authors on their books. I don’t think hardcovers are doing that well at all unless you’re a New York Times bestseller, so trade seems the safer option. I’ve also been hamstrung by the UK edition being out a year ahead of the US editions, and being available on export, but hopefully these can do well enough to keep things ticking over.

By Mark Newton

Born in 1981, live in the UK. I write about strange things.

6 replies on “City of Ruin – US Edition”

It will probably help that both the trade of NoV and CoR are out at the same time as well. In the US consecutive month releases generally do pretty well. People are easily comforted by the fact they don’t have to wait long for the next.

I’m not sure there’s much truth to that worry, Mark. Black Blade Blues, a recent Tor US book, has its sequel out in less than three weeks (Can you hear me squealing with glee?) and its coming out in hardcover and paperback (Not sure which size, it’s Tor US so probably MMPB) on the same day, yet this is only the author’s second book and hasn’t achieved huuuuuge numbers of sales to my knowledge.

I think it depends on the publisher and other factors, really. Tor UK are split between HC and paperback releases, with things such as Tchaikovsky’s Shadows of the Apt (By no means a poor performer) having nothing but paperbacks. Gollancz in the UK didn’t release a HC of Sanderson’s Way of Kings, yet he gets large numbers of sales, yet for Rothfuss’ second book he got a HC and a massive marketing campaign.

I’m afraid I’m not quite sure what you’re actually saying in the first part and how it relates to the above. That formats don’t matter? Trade paperbacks happen to be a strong market for Spectra; hardcovers are tough across the board. Even mass market is taking a bit of a hit, according to my last conversation with my editor, about the state of the industry.

To my knowledge, Shadows of the Apt was released in mass market because there were lots of the book in the series ready to go, so they released them a few months apart to get them out there, as opposed to a year apart which is traditional in UK publishing. There are many factors at play.

Oh, what I’m saying is that the way the book is sold (i.e. format) isn’t exactly indicative of the market. It’ll be partially indicative, sure, but I don’t think it’s the be all and end all.

But, that said, I know very little so I’m very probably wrong.

No, but publishers print editions (and numbers) according to what they think they will sell, so books don’t end up sitting in warehouses costing them money. If they don’t think a book will sell well in hardcover, they’ll do a trade edition, for example. And that judgement, in turn, is based on how the market performed for other similar titles.

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