What’s with this middle book thing?

Some time ago (15th March), I wrote a post about how my middle book didn’t sell as well as books 1 and 3, which struck me as very peculiar. Now I have further confirmation of the missing middle book syndrome … it has spread to the persons in library acquisitions.

Some of you may not know this, but in Australia, local authors are paid a sum of money each year according to the (estimated) number of books of theirs in public and school libraries (AUD $1.43c per book). I have just received my statement for the past year – and whaddya know, there are almost the same number of books 1 & 3 (a difference of 3 copies throughout Oz!), but 14% less copies of book 2. Huh? Now why would libraries acquire 1 and 3, but not 2??

Or is it that library users, having not bought the middle book, are now stealing it from their library? Ah, the mystery to be solved by some inspired sleuthing librarian…

Originally posted in Glenda’s blog on Thursday, 25 May 2006 (3 Comments).

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