We received an email yesterday from Impetus Press co-publishers Jennifer Banash and Willy Blackmore, announcing their decision to shut down their independent publishing venture after two years. “We have been hit with a procession of distribution-related problems which have put us into a financial situation that is forcing us to close our doors,” they explain. “For the better part of the year, we have been paying very high return fees to our distributor—many generated by books being sent back by the currently less-than-stable Borders—fees which have slowly been bleeding us dry… Try as we might, we have been unable to figure a way out of this situation as we have never been long on capital and with the economy being in such a disastrous state, there is no hope of finding any money from an outside source.”
Banash and Blackmore prided themselves on working closely with the authors they published, and say they will make an effort to place the books they were unable to bring to market with other houses.
This is the latest in a series of blows to independent publishers that includes staff cutbacks at MacAdam/Cage and the postponement of an entire Atlas Books frontlist for early 2009… and, as we know, the majors are not immune to the financial pressures.