Wednesday, July 22, 2009

It Wouldn't Be Day One of Comic Con...

without a bit of controversy.

This morning an open letter was posted by Anthony Tollin on one of the Yahoo Message Boards. Tollin, as everyone in pulp knows is one of the few pulp scholars and editor of the DOC SAVAGE and SHADOW reprint series.

An open letter to the pulp community:

For those taking advantage of the discounted SHADOW and DOC SAVAGE volumes at Half-Price Books, please be aware
that Nostalgia Ventures began remaindering these books last summer in direct violation of its sub-contract with
me. Also, as of today (July 22, 2009), Nostalgia Ventures has still not paid royalties to either Condé Nast or me for any books it has sold since July 1st, 2008. (A semi-annual royalty payment was due back in February, and
another six months of royalties are coming due in August.) There is a very good reason why Nostalgia Ventures/Nostalgiatown is no longer co-publishing these books, and it involves a continuing series of contract violations.

And for anyone who may not be sympathetic because Condé Nast is a huge corporation, please be aware that Condé
Nast has chosen to continue the oral agreement it had for decades with Walter Gibson, and is splitting its royalties for the SHADOW reprints with Walter's family. This is an extremely rare and decent act that is quite unusual in the publishing world.

I think my SHADOW and DOC SAVAGE double-novel trade paperbacks are a great value at the $12.95 cover price.
Obviously, the books are an even better value at discounted prices. However, please be aware that purchasing these books from either Half-Price Books or Nostalgiatown does nothing to encourage the continuation of these series. And since Nostalgia Ventures still hasn't paid its contract-required royalties for any of the books it has sold during the past 12 1/2 months, the money from Nostalgia Ventures' and Half-Price Books' sales also hasn't been continuing on to Walter Gibson's family.

It's not necessary to purchase THE SHADOW and DOC SAVAGE directly from Sanctum Books to support the ongoing
publishing operation and encourage the continuation of these reprints. Bud Plant Comic Art, Adventure House, Mike Chomko, Vintage Library, Girasol, Edge Books, The Mysterious Bookshop and any comic specialty shop that orders its books from Diamond Comic Distributors all get their books either directly or indirectly through Sanctum Books (which continues to make its regular royalty payments to Condé Nast and would like to continue publishing these reprints for many more years).

Please feel free to forward this message on to other pulp-oriented email groups.

--Anthony Tollin
Sanctum Books


First off, I want to say it's admirable beyond belief that Conde Nast is honoring a verbal commitment it made to one of its creators (who put a lot of money in their coffers when they were Street & Smith).

Secondly, purchase your Shadow reprints through one of the retail entities listed above so that the money that is rightfully due Gibson's family gets to them.

Three, stay tuned. I am sure there will be more to this soon.

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