MORNING CALL: "Authors nationwide booked on Y2K crisis, But their works are just collecting dust on the shelves...'greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
Authors nationwide booked on Y2K crisis
But their works are just collecting dust on the shelves, if stores ordered them at all.
By WILLIAM J. FORD
Of The Morning Call
J.R. Morris was surprised there were no computer glitches at midnight Dec. 31.
He was even more shocked that his book, ''Year 2000: Personal Protection Guide -- How to Protect your Assets, Identity and Credit from the upcoming Millennium Bug Computer Crisis,'' did not appeal to many people.
''Initially it sold very well, but sales fell off toward the end of '99,'' said Morris of Abilene, Texas, an accountant and computer consultant for 30 years.
Morris is among the hundreds of Y2K authors in the United States whose books did not sell. Indeed, his book was not even sold in several local bookstores, including Borders Bookstore and Barnes & Noble in Whitehall Township and Moravian Book Shop in Bethlehem.
Bookstore representatives would not reveal sales figures of Y2K books but said not many were sold.
At Moravian Book Shop, 15,000 to 20,000 books are stacked on the shelves. Yet, it had only five books with ''Y2K'' in the title.
''I think as an independent store we know our clientele, and we think there wasn't an interest to bring in [Y2K books] because we didn't think they would sell,'' said Dana DeVito, a book buyer at the store.
''A book called 'Y2K Family Survival Guide' by Avian Rogers was ordered last summer and that was sold as a gag gift from a customer who gave it to his mother,'' she said.
Y2K books failed to attract readers in the Lehigh Valley and across the country.
Brian Weese, a member of the American Booksellers Association, said 95 percent of the Y2K books on the market were just a fad.
''For a while we just put those books in appropriate sections, such as business, computer sections,'' said Weese, who owns a bookstore in Baltimore. ''But they only sold between July and September and died off by October. That was absolutely a fad.''
However, Weese said a few Y2K computer books, including 64 copies of ''Y2K'' by Victor Porlier, sold in his store.
Several Y2K books have been sitting on the shelves at the Barnes & Noble store in Whitehall.
For example, the store's 10 copies of ''Deadline on Y2K'' have not been sold in 12 months, said Carly Simon, a community relations manager.
Other Y2K books in bookstores across the country have also been collecting dust, such as ''Y2K Book of Resource Lists: What You Need to Prepare,'' ''The Y2K Survival Guide Cookbook'' and ''The Bug Stops Here!''
If books are not sold during a certain time, bookstores return them to the publishers.
But Morris said he hopes that books such as his will still sell as we approach Feb. 29, another date for which computers may not be prepared.
[ENDS] ''Some computer systems have not been made aware of the leap year,'' he said. ''If that computer system does not have the leap year day installed, the computer will be behind a day.''
-- John Whitley (email@example.com), January 09, 2000