Thought for the day: Back-to-back releases

by Don ~ July 5th, 2009. Filed under: Musings.

So when Orbit put out Brent Weeks‘s awesome Night Angel Trilogy (The Way of Shadows, Shadow’s Edge, Beyond the Shadows) last fall, releasing them blam*blam*blam in October, November, and December (or Sept, Oct, Nov, I can’t remember which), I thought it was a great strategy. It reels in the people who like to wait for a trilogy or series to be finished before they buy into it, plus it’s a ready-made Christmas gift for fantasy fans.

But like any good idea, other publishers are jumping all over it. In the last couple of months chez le bookstore, I’ve noticed a batch of these popping up in the SFF section (and the horror and romance sections — all of which are starting to blend to the point where we’ll soon need a separate Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance section or as I would be wont to call it “Tits and Tattoos”, but I digress…).

  • C.E. Murphy‘s The Walker Papers from Mira (Urban Shaman, Thunderbird Falls, Coyote Dreams)
  • C.C. Finlay‘s Traitor to the Crown from Del Rey (The Patriot Witch, A Spell for the Revolution, The Demon Redcoat)
  • S.J. Day‘s Marked from Tor (Eve of Darkness, Eve of Destruction, Eve of Chaos)

Plus at least two others I can’t recall the titles/authors of right now and maybe a further couple that I haven’t identified as speed trilogies (and seriously, what is it with all the initials? Yes, I release that’s ironic coming from someone who uses dbassingthwaite has his URL but that’s a type thing because the d and the b look good together). Some of the books look particularly intriguing — I have The Patriot Witch waiting to be read.

Still good for readers, but bad otherwise. One – not unique anymore. Two – like hair clogging the drain. There isn’t room on the new release shelves or even the regular shelves for a a dozen copies of 3 new titles right beside each other. Publishers, jump off the bandwagon, please! Space them out a bit.

Seriously, we can wait a couple more months between books if we need to.

4 Responses to Thought for the day: Back-to-back releases

  1. Neal Levin

    Actually C.E. Murphy’s doesn’t exactly fit that pattern. The books were originally released in trade paperback using the standard release scheduling. Thats only the mass market paperback that they quickly released that way. Possibly to draw sales from her fantasy series by DAW.

    And as for the initials… C.E. Murphy and S.J. Day seem to follow the old initials if you are a female author tick. C.C. Finlay is the odd man out.

  2. Don

    Ahh – gotcha. Still, I think the point stands. Rushing them out quickly even in mm release is a pain in the butt on the shelves.

    And initials for female authors – wow. If there was any genre where you wouldn’t think that would matter, this is it!

  3. Jeananne

    Hi Don! I just googled your website and found that you have a blog. I had a good chuckle reading your musings. I especially liked the fact that I discovered that you have bought a kilt! I will be checking this site frequently. Michael ran the 5K and Emily helped. We have two very tired children.

  4. Don

    And for anyone who happens to be following the comments, that would be my sister. Hi Jeananne!

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