I was thinking about review copies over the weekend, and realized there is another similar example of our cautiousness with review copies at Book Expo America, the publishing industry’s largest convention in North America.
While at the book show this coming weekend in LA, we will pass by dozens and dozens of booths where people are handing out review copies of books. Both books that were recently published and advanced copies of books that will be released in the Fall 2008 season. These free copies will be stacked by the hundreds in many booths and handed out to anyone who walks by who holds his or her hand out. (The show is only open to people in the industry.) We’ll have advanced review copies of one of our big Fall releases there too, but we will be taking a more targeted approach to passing the galleys out. We print a very limited number and want to make sure that the copies end up in key peoples’ hands. Librarians. Book reviewers. Media. Can we screen everyone who is interested in picking up a copy at the show? Of course not. But, we only have a small number of copies at the show and want to make sure they don’t go to waste.
This is a good example of the different mentality between a large publishing company and a small one. A large publishing company knows they will print X number of copies that will be designated as review copies. Do they care if someone ends up with a review copy who wasn’t seriously interested in reviewing, or at least considering reviewing, the book? Probably not. We care, though. Printing galleys is expensive and we are working with a smaller budget than they are.
We’re really looking forward to BEA and debuting our new author and big Fall title. Please make sure to stop by Casemate Booth #1211 and say hello.