While we’re sipping soup and all that, Joe Nozemack, publisher at Oni Press, was kind enough to send us some brief thoughts on Diamond’s new ordering policies and we wanted to get them out there as soon as possible. We’ll be back with more linkage and analysis. Now, here’s Joe:
I would hope to think that the $2,500 minimum that Diamond is instituting isn’t an arbitrarily concocted number. I’m sure they looked at the costs of listing a title, giving it space in the catalog, cutting the p.o. and receiving and reshipping the orders. There is a hard cost to doing all of this and I’m sure this went into the calculation of the minimum. Diamond should not be forced to lose money to list and distribute a title if it cannot prove to have a viable sales history after a certain amount of time. I also don’t think anyone is saying that these judgments will be made prior to giving a title a chance.
And in response to Simon Jones use of our title Salt Water Taffy as an example of a book that might be on the chopping block, this is just not the case. While the direct market is an important and key sales outlet for Oni Press, it is not our only sales outlet. When mass market and library sales are included, this title was in no danger of having its purchase order not issued.
But I do believe that if higher limits are to be put on relisting titles in Previews, Diamond might take another look at the 3% reorder fee that it charges for items it distributes for non-Premier publishers. While the fee is understandable on low ticket items, I do think that the fee can have the effect of being a penalty for those publishers besides Marvel, DC, Dark Horse and Image. The fee makes perfect sense for low priced items, say under $5, to cover the costs of picking and packaging them. But for books and graphic novels, I believe the margins and profits are high enough that the fee, passed on to the retailers, makes our product less attractive to the retailers.