Why We're Starting a Bookshop just for Pre-loved Indie Books: A Q&A

This Friday we're launching Ninja Bookshop, our online shop for pre-loved and new independently published books. Since we announced the opening we've had a barrage of support, for which we love you all. We've also had several people voice their concerns about various things, so here we are giving you our answers to those concerns as well as outlining what it is that we're trying to achieve.

Firstly, people have said they don't buy second hand books because the authors don't get any royalties. This is true and here are a couple of things that we think about it in relation to it:

  • Firstly, along with the pre-loved books which will be the majority of the shop, we'll also be selling a smaller selection of new books that we buy direct from the publishers, for which the authors will get royalties.

  • Secondly, each of our product listings will contain a link back to the publishers' website where we'll be encouraging people to look around and buy more of their awesome books directly from them.

  • Thirdly, we strongly believe that authors need to be paid properly. Of course we do. However we've always been huge supporters of second hand bookshops from the point of view of recycling. If books weren't sold second hand they'd be being printed purely for the consumption of one person (the person who bought it new and thus paid royalties) and from the point of view of the resources of our planet, that's not a responsible way to operate.

The other concern we've heard is that our bookshop won't be supporting independent publishers. In the way that we support indies with all of our other endeavours - by buying directly from them - no, it won't be. However as we've mentioned we'll be linking directly to the publisher in the listings of each book and will feature publishers regularly on our blog, as well as continuing to support them directly with our quarterly boxes, one-off boxes and monthly book club as we always have done.

What we're aiming to do is to create a curated selection of books from a wide range of fantastic indies at a lower price point than they usually would be, in one easy to find place. Our main aim with Ninja Bookshop is to encourage people who might want to try more indie books but may be reluctant to invest their money in what can (not always, but often) be a higher price point book than your standard mass market paperback, and/or to provide a place for people to easily find indie books and know that they're indie without having to do extensive research!

Our selection will cover a wide (and increasingly wider) range of genres, so we hope there will be something for everybody. Of course our intention is not to detract from the service already provided by indies and we will continue to encourage people to support them directly and through our book box and book club as much as possible. All that we're aiming to do with the bookshop is to provide an alternative for those who need it, and honestly to do something we've wanted to do for a very long time and combine our passion for indie publishers with our long held desire to be booksellers!

As always, we're really grateful for your support, and very excited to be planning the bookshop launch. Don't forget to join us for The Big Bookish Quiz over on twitter at 7pm on Friday 10th August, as well as RSVPing to the launch event for various special offers, competitions and Facebook lives throughout the day!


We have one last August mini box left, and a few book only options. Get yours here!

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