Thursday, April 03, 2008

Writing News.

Oops. Looks like the first derisory print run of Line War has gone as well, so if you want a hardback 1st edition of it you better grab it quick. For those of you who've obtained signed 1st editions from me before now, forget it. Either someone has sticky fingers in the Post Office, or prior to posting, or someone fucked up, because even I didn't get any copies. Pissed off right now.


Anonymous said...

Not impressed that you got no copies.

Did you manage to get any copies of shadow of the scorpian.


gary gibson said...

You should know the same thing happened to me. A box of twenty hardback copies of Stealing Light never got to me. I was practically the last person to get my hands on a copy.

Neal Asher said...

I heard that from Peter, Gary. But hopefully you got your allotment of 1st editions. My annoyance is due to a combination of not receiving my copies and the whole print run going because they didn't do enough. One would presume the print run is based on previous sales, but perhaps they don't bother when it's that small-selling squids-in-space nonsense. Luckily I got my copies of Prador Moon, but only after I asked for them again.

daniel said...

well that sucks - amazon sent me two copies so i guess i got yours.....! :p

Mike B. said...

Amazon /USA says the US edition will be released April 30th and it has a pre-order price of $39.95!Yea Bushy has helped kill the Dollar, but Amazon/UK has your book at £8.99 ($18.00 in US Dollars). I realize your not involved in the pricing, however, I point this out because Amazon US has done this with your other books (much higher US price) and it seams its not the case with a few other authors I buy.
I have a conspiracy theory for you: You mentioned the UK print shortage, is it possible that the shortage results in more demand for the US edition, allowing it to carry twice the relative UK price? And if this is the case who benefits from the higher US price?
1)I assume you receive the same royalty per book based on volume perhaps.
2)Amazon probably has consistent margin range requirements for its book sales, I would not think it arbitrarily says lets get 3 times our usual margin out of Asher in the US. (twice the UK price could translate to anywhere from 3 to 6 times the UK margin in the US on my guess). Of course Amazon US could simply be paying more for the US edition as the US edition may have a shorter print run and thereby would cost more, although if this is the case why does your publisher do a US print? If you, the author, get the same royalty based on volume, and do not benefit from a higher price in the US, then a lower price in the US (or the equivalent UK price in dollars)would translate into more US sales and more royalties for you and your publisher.

Which brings me to the conspiracy part, who benefits from the higher US price? I've tried to rule Amazon US out above. I've tried to rule you, the author, out assuming you get the same royalty based on volume. I've tried to rule out lower print volume in the US causing the higher price, as I would think your publisher would only do one larger UK printing in order to sell more (lower US price) pay less (one printing) and thereby make more money.

Which leads me to assume your publisher is in some way making out on the higher US price or they would do what I mentioned above.

Sure I had to make alot of assumptions as I am not privy to the working of the book industry. I just don't get the price difference, at twice the relative UK price why not do just the UK edition and export it? The export fees and transport can't be $18.00 per book can it?

PS. as you might have guessed I ordered my copy from the UK.
Keep up the good work,
Mike B.

Martin said...

Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity. - Hanlon's razor

Neal Asher said...

Nice to see you on Saturday, Daniel. I hope your hangover wasn't as bad as mine.

Mike, someone is being greedy there, but the best option is just to go elsewhere. A few posts further back you'll find the Book Depository and in the comments section other sites that are also more reasonable.

Martin, I like Hanlon's Razor - a slightly more specific instrument than Occam's one.

Mike B. said...

I've been getting my copies from the Book Depository...when ordering from the USA the net price is cheaper than Amazon/UK.

My intent with my conspiracy comments was not as much to blame anyone, as to start constructive thought. Purchasing Power Parity suggests something is out of whack, and yes its probably from greed or stupidity. Its one thing if your getting greater royalties from the higher U.S. price, I only point out that the U.S. pricing may be keeping you out of alot of U.S. book stores and limiting your new US reader growth. If as in your comments you feel that the publisher is too conservative on first prints, perhaps your best interests are not being met in other areas as well. As I'd like to come to one of your book signings, I'm all for giving you a reason to come to the U.S.

I'm not calling malice, although I prefer; Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity, but don't rule out malice. --Heinlein's Razor

Mike B.

Martin said...


Neal Asher said...

Heinlein's Razor I like even better.

Olaf said...

I got mine. 100 pages in and I'm just thinking "are there any still living characters you've omitted? Could Neal possibly add any more plot threads?"

I'm enjoying it immensely . Also read "Hilldiggers" (liked that a lot too) and "The Voyage of the Sable Keetch" again on me hols.

I do hope you've more Hooper stories coming.