When demand outstrips supply: the life of a small press
In the life of a small-press publisher, success and struggle can often arrive together. Case in point: We just launched a groundbreaking graphic novel in collaboration with the Wing Luke Museum on May 18 called We Hereby Refuse: Japanese American Resistance to Wartime Incarceration. The release has been met with immediate acclaim. The Seattle Times calls it “a page-turner.” Readers have snapped up copies at independent booksellers and online sites, and within a week, our initial print run of 3,000 has been exhausted. Time to pop the cork and celebrate a hot seller, right?
Not exactly. Having demand outstrip supply might be seen as a good problem to have, but it has left venues hosting events scrambling to find books to meet pre-orders. University teachers weren’t getting the copies they needed for their students. Readers are going to the authors to ask why the book is shown online as backordered or out-of-stock. Success turned into sleepless nights, a few frustrating phone calls, and lots of calls to the distributor trying to locate supplies.
We're not complaining. We're thrilled by the reception for this important book. But as a small press with not-so-deep pockets, rushing back to press on a hot-selling title is not a simple process.
But the good news is: We’ve worked out the kinks and are now going back to press for a second printing of We Hereby Refuse. New copies will be available not long after the 4th of July holiday.
So this is our way of saying, first, thank you for validating our belief in this vital work, and second, our apologies to those waiting for their copy and we ask your patience for a few more weeks. As Paul Constant says in Crosscut, this book is “well worth the wait.” More inventory is coming to a shop near you, any order you make now will be fulfilled, and an e-book is on the way. Everyone with an interest in this part of our American history will have access to this book, and we're working hard to get them to you.