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    Re: Two books on sextants.
    From: George Huxtable
    Date: 2008 Dec 15, 23:33 -0000

    A major fraction of a publisher's total spend is unrelated to how many 
    copies are sold, as Bill Morris has explained. The pricing is presumably a 
    commercial decision, intended to maximise the publisher's profit.
    Such books as "Sextants at Greenwich" are selling in a specialist academic 
    market, never a mass market. They are not expected to sell in large numbers, 
    But pricing at the "prestige price" of �120 will ensure that it's only going 
    to get bought by corporate customers, rather than ordinary readers such as 
    you and me. It makes it certain that only small numbers will sell (at that 
    price); a self-fulfilling prophecy. However, I wish it success, even if it's 
    way out of my reach.
    As for its predecessor on "Astrolabes at Greenwich", I rejoice that 
    "remaindering", at a quarter of the original price, has now made it 
    accessible, to me anyway;  indeed, I have just ordered a copy. It's the 
    market-laws at work. I guess that OUP has already made its profit on that 
    publication. I doubt if any of the authors involved in these books ever make 
    a fortune from them.
    contact George Huxtable, at  george@hux.me.uk
    or at +44 1865 820222 (from UK, 01865 820222)
    or at 1 Sandy Lane, Southmoor, Abingdon, Oxon OX13 5HX, UK. 
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