Posts tagged bookselling

Learning from the French

Moving from journalism into fiction writing, it sometimes feels as if I have gone from one dying industry straight to another. All I read about my profession is doom and gloom, and I sometimes wonder whether I’ve chosen a career that will be obsolete by the time I’ve established yourself in it. It’s the internet, or ebooks, or supermarket¬† discounting, or big-chain conglomerates pricing out independents, or something else that will destroy literature as we know it. So it was nice to read an article in the 8th issue of… Read More

Rumours of the death of bookshops

I got depressed about bookshops recently. A great little London literary magazine, Smoke, has just published its last issue. The editor/founder Matt Haynes explained: Of the hundred-odd shops that stocked our early issues, well over half have now closed. And when Borders ceased trading just before Christmas, we lost not only more than 25% of our sales overnight, but also three dozen high-profile spots from which to be subliminally sublime. I was really sad to hear this. Smoke is a magazine where I got one of my first stories published,… Read More

Forecasting the future

The Society of Young Publishers hit on an interesting idea in a recent issue of its magazine inPrint. They dug up an old article from 1998, in which Waterstones Managing Director Alan Giles was giving his thoughts about the future of the bookselling industry. For those of you who don’t know, Waterstones is the major bookshop chain in the UK, the equivalent of Barnes¬† Noble in the US, only even more dominant. So this guy should know what he’s talking about, right? Wrong. He got more or less everything wrong…. Read More