Adventures in Marketing — Week 349

Sold five books – and gave seven away – all being copies of our newly published journal “The French Hotel.”
The gifts were to Adele for relatives (2) and friends (1); to my relatives (2); and one each to the café’s chief barista and our formatter, as my share of his compensation. The sales were to four café regulars and one semi-regular at my back-up café.
Selling at the café has required balancing interests among we Board of Directors. A subtle one has been recognizing that, while our markets for customers may over-lap, some of us have a greater claim to some people than others of us, and the honorable thing may be to steer a buyer elsewhere. This became somewhat dicier when one of us chose to sell books for half the price of the rest of us, leading some buyers to forsake allegiance for the bargain and some of us sellers to be racked by feelings of guilt.
This has now been resolved – perhaps in violation of anti-trust laws but resolved. We may give away books; but if we sell them, it will be at the agree-to price. (My back up plan had been to buy all the cut rate books and then re-sell them at full price.)

Meanwhile, personal relationships have ebbed and flowed. The fellow who’d called me a “Jackass” over my recommended edits and I are now pals again. (A big relief. I hate walking around imagining what-I’ll-say when what-he-says, which I tend to do.) But another contributor and I are on the outs over (a) the condition her free copy arrived in – which I had nothing to do with and (b) her being misadvised of the date of our launch party – which I didn’t do. “What the fuck?” she inquired.
This is a prickly person. Following an earlier confrontation, I’d remarked to a friend of hers, “Boy, X gave me a piece of her mind.” “Really?” her friend said, “I’m surprised she has any left.”
Dorothy Parker couldn’t’ve said it better.

Oh, yes, the party. A week from today, despite the email sent contributors saying it would be one day earlier and despite the poster prepared for the event saying it was four.
Finally, the dozens and dozens of emails I have sent announcing the journal and the party have brought zero reactions to the former and two acceptances of to the latter. Which calls into question whether this is truly something whose time has come.