In a move to bump up physical book sales, Stephen King will not release an e-book version of his new novel, "Joyland," the Wall Street Journal reports.

It’s something of a radical move for the man who stood onstage with Amazon’s Jeff Bezos in 2009 to introduce the Kindle 2.

This time King has decided to throw his support behind brick-and-mortar booksellers. "I have no plans for a digital version," King told the Journal. "In the meantime, let people stir their sticks and go to an actual bookstore rather than a digital one."

However, the print book is still available for pre-order from online retailer Amazon.

Here's a link to the whole Wall St. Journal via L.A. Times story by JENNY HENDRIX

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Well, best-selling authors have something to lose when the stores all fold. And the publishers. The rest of the writers cannot afford to support either contingent. I see no reason why King wouldn't sell print books through Amazon. He'd be foolish.

Guess it goes along with the retro book cover ...

I know it's hard for some people to believe, but when King does something like this his first concern is not money.  Besides having more money than god, he is a lover of vintage paperbacks & especially the Gold Medal Greats.  In fact, he dedicated another crime novel by the same publisher, "The Colorado Kid," to my mystery series namesake--"With admiration, for Dan J. Marlowe, author of The Name of the Game is Death: Hardest of the hardboiled."  Dan named a character in the novel after me; Stephen knew him too.  This is why he is writing in a genre, and with a publisher, which pays him a pittance compared to what he could make if he wished.

I'm as cynical as they come, but I know personally that he does this because his success has given him the freedom to put this book out in paper, with this type of publisher, just like his boyhood heroes did back in the Golden Age of Paperbacks.

   

OK.  That makes sense to me. Yes, the cover suggests as much. Not my type of thing, but I know it has many devoted fans.

That fits my impression completely.

I am not of fan of his work, have never read one.  But as a person and author he's a very class act and certainly has more money than he could spend.

To make this weirder, not that you can get Joyland for $7.77 paperback... on amazon.   So much for stirring sticks down to the bookstore.

Compare to what King titlos sell for on Kindle--over $12.00

So???????  Motive??????  I dunno.

I don;t think the "need bookstores" divide is between best-selling authors and non-best-selling, though.  Hell, there are indie  authors on NYT best-seller list.

It's between authors at major houses with enough clout to be part of the merchandising they do at stores.  Paying for placement, paying for end displays and front tables, posters, etc.  They have a huge advantage in stores.

(Which is why indie authors should not have stores as a part of their strategy)

So true!

He ain't called "King" for nothin'.  Do you know of any other author who can insist on an unabridged audio version of a novel the size of The Stand?  When I did my recent audio version of Forevermore, I had to take the price Amazon put on it.

Yesterday Hard Case Crime publisher Charles Ardai was on CBC radio talking about publishing Joyland as a paperback only. The interview isn't online yet, but he also wrote an essay about why they're doing this that says pretty much what he said in the interview:

http://boingboing.net/2013/05/29/why-cling-to-the-past-exclusi.html

I discussed this at length with Charles Ardai, and he contends that it was for artistic reasons, that reading a paperback is a different experience than reading an ebook, and that King wanted his story to be experienced as it would have been experienced in 1973, the time of its setting.

What's ironic to me, though, is that the book is available on audio CD...

So I think it's mostly about trying to get more people back into bookstores. Yes, it's available on Amazon, but then you have to pay shipping, and you have to wait a few days to get it in your hands.

Can a single little paperback save bookstores from going the way of record stores and video stores? Of course not. But, if it's successful, I could see larger publishers following suit by windowing ebook releases for other big name authors. It'll be interesting to see how it plays out.

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