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BooperFH
Posts: 71
Registered: ‎12-30-2009
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Hardcover to paperback to nook

When a book in hardcover comes out in paperback, how long before the price of the nook version drops? I've been keeping my eye on Keith Richards "Life" which was just released in paperback but the nook price hasn't changed.

Distinguished Bibliophile
ABthree
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Registered: ‎01-27-2010
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

[ Edited ]

 


BooperFH wrote:

When a book in hardcover comes out in paperback, how long before the price of the nook version drops? I've been keeping my eye on Keith Richards "Life" which was just released in paperback but the nook price hasn't changed.


 

That totally depends on the publisher and the publisher's marketing plan for the book. 

 

Sometimes, it seems that I've seen the price drop even before there's a paperback release.  More often, though, and especially if the publisher's strategy seems to be to really flog DTB sales, the eBook is treated almost as a luxury edition, and the price can be very, very sticky.

+LORD, preserve the good in their goodness, and+
+in your kindness, make the wicked become good.+
-- St. Basil the Great+
Inspired Contributor
BooperFH
Posts: 71
Registered: ‎12-30-2009
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

Thanks for the response. These publishing houses are starting to get on my nerves. Luckily I have a good supply of ebooks in my library to keep me going until the books on my wish list become more reasonably priced. I can wait the bastards out.

Doug_Pardee
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook


BooperFH wrote:

 

I can wait the bastards out.


My guess is that you can't. The big publishing houses have no reason to lower the prices of e-books. A couple of the big advantages of e-books for the publishers are 1) they can see how sales are going from day to day or even hour to hour, and 2) they can adjust the price on a daily or sometimes even hourly basis. They are seeing that the e-books sell very well at higher prices, so they have no reason to reduce the prices.

 

E-book prices from the big publishers have generally been rising over the past six months or so, even for the same titles, even ignoring the big jumps caused by Random House switching to Agency Model on March 1. Despite those rising prices, e-book sales are going through the roof. The big publishing houses are all multi-national conglomerates, and they have a fiduciary duty to their stockholders to make as much profit as possible. If they didn't raise e-book prices given the tremendously strong demand, there would be stockholder lawsuits.

 

Adding to that, the mass-market paperback format is terminal (for the big publishers). Sales are off by almost half from a year ago. It's getting increasingly harder for a publisher to justify the cost of formatting, producing, and shipping a mass-market paperback version of a book. Soon there won't be a mass-market paperback as a lower-cost alternative.

 

The consumer has a few choices: pay the higher prices for e-books, buy mass-market paperback if it's available, or broaden the possibilities to include the huge number of reasonably-priced e-books from the smaller publishers. The reason the publishers are getting away with these high prices is that consumers have been led to believe that only the Big Name authors write good books.

 

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ABthree
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

 


Doug_Pardee wrote:

BooperFH wrote:

 

I can wait the bastards out.


My guess is that you can't. The big publishing houses have no reason to lower the prices of e-books. A couple of the big advantages of e-books for the publishers are 1) they can see how sales are going from day to day or even hour to hour, and 2) they can adjust the price on a daily or sometimes even hourly basis. They are seeing that the e-books sell very well at higher prices, so they have no reason to reduce the prices.

 


 

I'm totally with Doug on this.  I see absolutely no economic pressures on the publishers to lower prices.  All of their business models (they naturally want to maximize profits) and cultural biases (they distrust digital media) militate against it.  And regardless of Doug's usual eloquent advocacy of small houses and unknown authors, books are not fungible, at least not very much:  people want to read what they want to read and seldom accept substitutions, let alone seek them out.  Short of government action to break up the Agency agreements, the upward trend is with us for a long time.

 

That said, note Doug's second point that I highlighted above.  While the trend IS up, the publishers do experiment.  If you can catch them at it, you can benefit.  The price of good buys, like the price of freedom, is constant vigilance. :smileywink:

+LORD, preserve the good in their goodness, and+
+in your kindness, make the wicked become good.+
-- St. Basil the Great+
Inspired Contributor
BooperFH
Posts: 71
Registered: ‎12-30-2009
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

Don't I know it. Several times a day I scan my wish list looking for price drops. Historical fiction and mysteries are my favs and there are still a lot of reasonably priced ebooks in these categories and new authors to discover.

Doug_Pardee
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook


ABthree wrote:

 

regardless of Doug's usual eloquent advocacy of small houses and unknown authors, books are not fungible, at least not very much:  people want to read what they want to read and seldom accept substitutions, let alone seek them out.


Yeah, that's the thing. Personally, I think the "nothing else will do" feeling that readers have is a somewhat artificial perception built up by the big publishers.

 

As you correctly point out, I'm kind-of on a mission to suggest to readers that they stop for a moment and think if they really must have that latest book in a series — you know, the series that stopped being good six books back. The big publishers rely on that reflex reaction among readers, and nowadays they don't even like to consider publishing books that aren't part of a series. Hachette's still hurting financially because Stephenie Meyer turned out only four books in the Twilight series. Meanwhile, Janet Evanovich continues to milk the Stephanie Plum series, with #18 on the way, even though a lot of readers think that the series lost its way a long time back.

 

The only way to get the big publishers to change their ways is for readers to change their ways. If you buy the paperback instead of the e-book, it's still a sale for the publisher. If you buy from another big publisher, it emboldens that publisher to keep prices high. I suggest buying from a publisher that treats you as a valued customer, not as a crack-head who'll pay almost anything for the next hit. (Is that the right terminology?)

 

It's high time to accept substitutions, and to seek them out. Not that the masses ever will, but do we need to follow the masses?

 

Correspondent
tabascobaby
Posts: 194
Registered: ‎06-08-2010
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

 


Doug_Pardee wrote:

ABthree wrote:

 

regardless of Doug's usual eloquent advocacy of small houses and unknown authors, books are not fungible, at least not very much:  people want to read what they want to read and seldom accept substitutions, let alone seek them out.


Yeah, that's the thing. Personally, I think the "nothing else will do" feeling that readers have is a somewhat artificial perception built up by the big publishers.

 

As you correctly point out, I'm kind-of on a mission to suggest to readers that they stop for a moment and think if they really must have that latest book in a series — you know, the series that stopped being good six books back. The big publishers rely on that reflex reaction among readers, and nowadays they don't even like to consider publishing books that aren't part of a series. Hachette's still hurting financially because Stephenie Meyer turned out only four books in the Twilight series. Meanwhile, Janet Evanovich continues to milk the Stephanie Plum series, with #18 on the way, even though a lot of readers think that the series lost its way a long time back.

 

The only way to get the big publishers to change their ways is for readers to change their ways. If you buy the paperback instead of the e-book, it's still a sale for the publisher. If you buy from another big publisher, it emboldens that publisher to keep prices high. I suggest buying from a publisher that treats you as a valued customer, not as a crack-head who'll pay almost anything for the next hit. (Is that the right terminology?)

 

It's high time to accept substitutions, and to seek them out. Not that the masses ever will, but do we need to follow the masses?

 


I think it's just hard for some people (myself included) to give up on a series that we love. Sookie Stackhouse is in its 11th book I believe. I LOVE Charlaine Harris. And I really want to read the book that was released yesterday. But it is 14.99!!! I had heard/read earlier last month that with bestsellers will tend to go down in price after a few weeks. So the problem with buying only from publishers who have lower prices, is that you miss out on your favorite series. And honestly, as long as they have a hit author they will price books higher. And if you only buy from reasonably priced publishers, those publishers may start increasing the prices that they set.

 

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ABthree
Posts: 4,123
Registered: ‎01-27-2010
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

 


Doug_Pardee wrote:

ABthree wrote:

 

regardless of Doug's usual eloquent advocacy of small houses and unknown authors, books are not fungible, at least not very much:  people want to read what they want to read and seldom accept substitutions, let alone seek them out.


Yeah, that's the thing. Personally, I think the "nothing else will do" feeling that readers have is a somewhat artificial perception built up by the big publishers.

 

As you correctly point out, I'm kind-of on a mission to suggest to readers that they stop for a moment and think if they really must have that latest book in a series — you know, the series that stopped being good six books back. The big publishers rely on that reflex reaction among readers, and nowadays they don't even like to consider publishing books that aren't part of a series. Hachette's still hurting financially because Stephenie Meyer turned out only four books in the Twilight series. Meanwhile, Janet Evanovich continues to milk the Stephanie Plum series, with #18 on the way, even though a lot of readers think that the series lost its way a long time back.

 

 


 

I wasn't being sarcastic.  :smileywink:  And I pretty much agree with you that average readers should be willing to expand their horizons, and that commodifying literature by turning it into soap operas in print was a lousy development.

 

But "people want to read what they want to read" doesn't just apply to series written on autopilot; it applies to literary novels at least as much.  André Aciman is never going to be a household name (more's the pity!) very far from the coasts or Chicago or Denver or Santa Fe -- you know, the places where All the Usual Suspects live.  But I fell in love with the way he writes in Call Me By Your Name , so I HAD to read Eight White Nights.  I didn't want to read about obsessive love; I wanted to read André Aciman writing about obsessive love.  If that's shortsighted, then the visual problem is self-inflicted:  Macmillan, for all their many crimes, is completely innocent this time.  :smileyvery-happy:

+LORD, preserve the good in their goodness, and+
+in your kindness, make the wicked become good.+
-- St. Basil the Great+
Distinguished Correspondent
GetLostInABook
Posts: 116
Registered: ‎01-29-2011
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

As a big sci-fi fan, I'm lucky that I can always find a great book on Baen.  They offer multiple formats that are DRM free at a fair price.  For other publishers, if I think the price is too high, I'll try to get the book from a used book store or the library.  I get the book and the publisher doesn't get my money.

Doug_Pardee
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook


tabascobaby wrote:

 

I think it's just hard for some people (myself included) to give up on a series that we love. Sookie Stackhouse is in its 11th book I believe. I LOVE Charlaine Harris. And I really want to read the book that was released yesterday. But it is 14.99!!!


I know it's hard to give up a series that you love. But do you really still love the series? Did you like the last 2 Sookie books? One reviewer wrote, "I faithfully read all the other Sookie books and have been more and more disappointed with them. Book 10 was hardly worth the time spent reading it." If you didn't like the recent books, why be in a hurry to buy the next one?

 

On the other hand, you might agree with the reviewer who wrote, "Sometimes series like this become mundane and repeative, not this one!!" So if you do still love the series, you need to look at value. Early computer-game designer Scott Adams (no relation to the Dilbert cartoonist) said that he tried to price his games relative to going to the movies. If you'd pay $10 to see a 2-hour movie, is paying $15 for a novel that will probably keep you entertained for much longer than that really so bad?

 

It's that "the series has gone to heck but I always buy it" attitude that I'm mainly trying to crack right now. A number of people are buying books and e-books without thinking, then complaining about the price. If you buy stuff without thinking, you're probably going to pay too much. But if the recent books in the series worked for you, then it probably makes sense to buy the next one.

 

Although, from a glance over the reviews, there doesn't seem to be any reason to be in a hurry for that particular title. The general consensus seems to be that it's not as bad as Dead in the Family, but Dead Reckoning is mainly just setting things up for the final two books in the series. One reviewer wrote, "If you read the book's description you've essentially almost completely read the book."


I had heard/read earlier last month that with bestsellers will tend to go down in price after a few weeks.


They used to, but not so much any more. Now I'm seeing e-book prices staying up, and in some cases rising. It really depends on the demand for that particular title. In the case of a Sookie Stackhouse, I'm guessing that the price is going to stay up for quite a while.

 

Of course, if you bought the hardcover of the new Sookie Stackhouse, it'd cost you even more than the e-book would. Only 3 cents more if you can buy online and finagle free shipping and if your state charges sales tax on e-books, but the e-book's still cheaper.

Inspired Correspondent
jaquellae
Posts: 227
Registered: ‎08-27-2010
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

I have to agree about Baen. I just raided their free library last night in anticipation of a coming vacation and will likely come back hooked on several new authors :smileywink: I support them whenever I can and wish other publishers would follow their lead. I'm not going to hold my breath, though.

Distinguished Correspondent
mpebbs
Posts: 176
Registered: ‎12-22-2009
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

  I will admit to being a series junkie, and I probably will not give up my favorites anytime soon. They have however lost me to any new series from the big 6. It is much easier to skip a new series that will just bind me that much tighter to a horrible pricing structure.

Correspondent
tabascobaby
Posts: 194
Registered: ‎06-08-2010
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

 


Doug_Pardee wrote:

tabascobaby wrote:

 

I think it's just hard for some people (myself included) to give up on a series that we love. Sookie Stackhouse is in its 11th book I believe. I LOVE Charlaine Harris. And I really want to read the book that was released yesterday. But it is 14.99!!!


I know it's hard to give up a series that you love. But do you really still love the series? Did you like the last 2 Sookie books? One reviewer wrote, "I faithfully read all the other Sookie books and have been more and more disappointed with them. Book 10 was hardly worth the time spent reading it." If you didn't like the recent books, why be in a hurry to buy the next one?

 

On the other hand, you might agree with the reviewer who wrote, "Sometimes series like this become mundane and repeative, not this one!!" So if you do still love the series, you need to look at value. Early computer-game designer Scott Adams (no relation to the Dilbert cartoonist) said that he tried to price his games relative to going to the movies. If you'd pay $10 to see a 2-hour movie, is paying $15 for a novel that will probably keep you entertained for much longer than that really so bad?

 

It's that "the series has gone to heck but I always buy it" attitude that I'm mainly trying to crack right now. A number of people are buying books and e-books without thinking, then complaining about the price. If you buy stuff without thinking, you're probably going to pay too much. But if the recent books in the series worked for you, then it probably makes sense to buy the next one.

 

Although, from a glance over the reviews, there doesn't seem to be any reason to be in a hurry for that particular title. The general consensus seems to be that it's not as bad as Dead in the Family, but Dead Reckoning is mainly just setting things up for the final two books in the series. One reviewer wrote, "If you read the book's description you've essentially almost completely read the book."


I had heard/read earlier last month that with bestsellers will tend to go down in price after a few weeks.


They used to, but not so much any more. Now I'm seeing e-book prices staying up, and in some cases rising. It really depends on the demand for that particular title. In the case of a Sookie Stackhouse, I'm guessing that the price is going to stay up for quite a while.

 

Of course, if you bought the hardcover of the new Sookie Stackhouse, it'd cost you even more than the e-book would. Only 3 cents more if you can buy online and finagle free shipping and if your state charges sales tax on e-books, but the e-book's still cheaper.


I actually do still love the sookie books. I am hoping to find it cheaper at like Sam's Club or something. To me it almost is worth it, except when I then go back and find out that it has dropped dramatically in price. I can wait on the book for a little while, I was just pointing out that some people have a hard time not getting a book. I am one of those that as long as the author isn't just replacing names in a book and calling it new, or completely going in another direction that makes no sense I will try and read the entire series. As for the sookie books, knowing that end is near I don't feel like giving up on them, especially since she tends to move the plot forward, and it is always somewhat different than the first. This is actually the first time that I complained about ebook pricing, and I generally go for cheaper prices, or shop around.

 

Frequent Contributor
Ostracus
Posts: 102
Registered: ‎04-26-2011
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Re: Hardcover to paperback to nook

Try technical books. One of the items most resistant to price drops. Textbooks (even if one isn't in school) are another. Two of the classes of books that benefit the most from the weight reduction that an ereader presents.