Dorchester Publishing, a staple in the romance genre and the house that launched the careers of authors such as Christine Feehan, Marjorie M. Liu and C.L. Wilson, is moving into the digital sphere with all future titles to be exclusively released as e-books, starting with their September releases. That means the books will no longer be printed in paperback and will not be available in local stores.
"These are like pioneer times in publishing. We felt like we needed to take some chances and make a bold move," Dorchester President John Prebich told Publisher's Weekly. In keeping with that sentiment, the company announced today that it will no longer be publishing mass-market novels, and although it will continue to offer print copies for its book club business, they will now use a print-on-demand service for select titles.
According the PW report, Prebich cited falling retail sales as the primary concern for Dorchester. In 2009, print book sales were down by 25% with even greater losses this year. However, at the same time their e-book business has shown "remarkable growth" according to the article.
So what does this mean for readers? For one, as of September, readers will only be able to find Dorchester titles in e-book formats. Additionally, Dorchester says it will be cutting back on the number of titles that it releases each month. Instead of 30 books, readers will only see about 25 titles.
At the time of this announcement, Dorchester was unable to be reached for comment. However, we will keep you updated as this story unfolds. And check upcoming issues of RT BOOK REVIEWS magazine for the full story.
BLOG UPDATE 8/11/2010: The Editorial Director of Dorchester Publishing, Leah Hultenschmidt, told PW today that the publishing house was planning to go exclusively digital with their new releases "only for the next six months." How will the company be moving forward with their releases after that time and what does that mean for you? Get all the full story about the changes happening at Dorchester in the upcoming issue of RT BOOK REVIEWS.
We Want To Know: What you think of Dorchester's move? Are you getting out your e-reader to buy Dorchester's newest books? Post your comments below.