Friday, April 24, 2009

Why is it some books sell and others don't....

You know, I'm finding that I look as this blog more from the book SELLER perspective than any other (except for those days when I have to crow about the kids...). At any rate, I was going through more stacks of books to decide what to take to the Gold Rush Book Fair (There, I put a link in ) and saw this book.

I've had this book listed on my website since 2004 -- It's a GOOD book by a well known, and quite collectable author. It's one of the first hardback books Bukowski published and it's limited. SO why won't someone just snap it up?

I've tweaked the description several times to be more accurate to include more detail & depth to the listing -- but still no nibbles. Iv'e had customers (and dealers) pick it up with anticipation and a gleam in their eyes, but then put it down again.

So -- what MAKES a good saleable listing for a collectable book? And what's the exact formula for selling the darn thing anyway?

Of course, no one can tell you that (and even if they could, that's the sort of trade secret that no living book dealer would ever willingly fork over).

This blog post is mainly a way for me to muse on the fact that fate and luck are part and parcel of being a book dealer and that's just the way it is.

Also, for those of you in the business, there's that old saw about pulling a particular book off the shelf, wondering why it hasn't sold-- and see it sell the next day. This is just my updated techno version of that.

(and another old tale is ... if it doesn't sell in two days, threaten to to pitch it ... loud enough so the book can hear... and see what happens).

I'll let you know what happens with this particular book in a week.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


I enjoyed reading your well written blog.

You might try and post a photo of this books art work with your listing. One picture as the say.

I've sold this edition in the $85-$100 range in the past. Buk is quite collectible as you know.

Of course you can't make a living out of selling books.

I should know because I've been doing it for over 20 years now.

Continued success,

Ashbury Books