Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Reprint houses

The Joan Murray and Rosalie Moore books were both reprinted by AMS Press in 1971.

Which makes me wonder if there are any operational or business model records for AMS Press, Arno, Books For Libraries and other such reprint houses from decades ago. Clearly none of them were profitable enough to stay in business until today, but I;m curious how they were able to stay afloat at all and if ther'es anything that could be gleaned from they way they did business then that would be instructive for us today.

5 comments:

shanna said...

wow, i had no idea. i wonder how many copies they produced? have you seen any of those offered for resale anywhere?

Mark Scroggins said...

Hi Tom--good to see you blogging. I too am interested in the business of these reprint houses -- one of them, Folcroft Library Editions, did a reprint of An "Objectivists" Anthology in 1975 which enraged LZ, since he was apparently not contacted about the project or asked for permissions. Any ideas on the legality of that?

tmorange said...

hi mark!

yeah, folcroft's another one. wd seem to me copyright had not run out on the objectivist anthology by 1975, so it's surprising zukofsky was never asked for permission.

i'm curious who was making the decisions on what to reprint. in the mid-1970s arno reprint house did a handfull of complete runs of little magazines -- everything from Circle (Berkeley, mid-1940s anarchist crowd) to Joglars (coolidge and palmer). and books-for-libraries did those reissues of the yale gertrude stein, which are probably now as rare as the yales themselves!

gonna see if my librarian friends can get any answers on this stuff.

bests,
t.

tmorange said...

shanna -- my copy of the moore is the genuine article, got it online from powells for 15 bucks. (and i see they've come down a bit from that recently.) dunno if yr average online bookseller's gonna be that sensitive to whether something's a reprint or not when listing it...

t.

-k said...

I looked into creating a group listserve for the purpose of privately sharing PDF-scanned reprints, sort of like what Project Eclipse does but on personal, do-it-yourself level. The problem was size. Most online groups and listserves limit the size of file attachements to 1 MB. Any other ideas?