Wholesale Problems

There's a complaint among many retailers who operate along the lines that I do (i.e. using just in time ordering for lower selling titles) that Marvel, Image and Dark Horse have trouble keeping trades in stock at Diamond. DC has been at it awhile longer with their backlist, particularly for titles like Watchmen, V for Vendetta, Ronin, etc and they tend to have only a small window wherein a title is unavailable (though I did have to wait a few weeks to get in a replacement copy of Superman: Red Son). The other three are improving but at this moment Diamond is out of stock on Ultimate X-Men vol 1, 7, & 9. To be out of volume 1 is particularly bad since its the obvious jump on point for new readers. Hopefully Marvel already has another print of those volumes being worked on and it will only be a few days or a couple of weeks at most that they are out of stock. The problem, though, are titles like Star Wars: Clone Wars Volume 7, Serenity and, a running problem, 300 (notice a theme there?). All three are currently out of stock at Diamond. I've been trying to get another copy of Clone Wars for a month and a half. I finally broke down and decided that I'd get it from a wholesaler and check Baker & Taylor. Out of stock with 60 copies on order from publisher. Apparently this book saw either a small print run or it sold like crazy (though none of the sales charts showed anything particularly high). Hoping that Ingram may have a copy or two left I checked their site. Spread between a few warehouses, they currently have 783 copies in stock. Miller's 300? None in stock at Diamond or B&T, over 300 at Ingram. Over 1000 Serenity with over a thousand more on order waiting for a reprint and Baker & Taylor has about half that. These are not huge numbers for the bookstore market (Ingram has over 7000 copies of The Da Vinci Code in stock) but by way of comparison, they have 50 copies of Ultimate X-Men Vol 1 in stock. For a Direct Market store to have just three options (wait, give up 10% discount or find another retailer with overstock) none of which involve our primary distributor, something isn't working right.


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