I am doing some evaluations of the new website Photobook Collective that is meant help everyone buy and sell photobooks, new, used or somewhere in between. Which is ideal for those who have some photobooks that are in their library collection that are no longer a good fit or a place to let folks know that they would like to purchase a certain photobook (WTB – Want to Buy). Of course, I think it might be a great place to list a book that I have co-published and I still have a few left to sell, such as my book Ciociaria, published by Punctum Edizioni (Rome) in 2011. Yes, I just listed it here.
This is where I also need to state that due to my PhotoBook Journal experience with a lot of books, they have asked me to be an advisor of sorts. So I just want to be public with this aspect, no hidden games. My first agenda was to try to use the site, which I have plenty of books to experiment with, but the upside that if this works, it could be a great win-win for buyers and sellers. Cool!
I think that most book collectors, as well as indie book publishers, agree that selling photobooks can be daunting. Especially when a book is used, or when the publication date has passed. As an example, as the Senior Editor for PhotoBook Journal we are really interested in book submissions for publications that were published this year (2021) and we may consider a book published last year (2020), with 2019 publications now essentially off the table for consideration. Thus, a photobook can become ‘dated’, nevertheless the content can still be compelling, interesting and very desireable, thus still a book someone would like to have in their collection. I think a place like Photobook Collective can serve a need.
There are other places to sell books from collections, such as eBay where they take a cut of the action. Or try one of the Facebook book selling groups, which I find daunting and confusing. Photobook Collective is asking for an on-going monthly fee (or an annual with a savings) to join, then it is free to post a book for sale. A book buyer contacts the book seller directly, who then work out their deal between themselves. Sort of a virtual photobook match maker.
So now I am working out the tweaks as to how to make a good listing, what to include and where to include it. The process was pretty intuitive the first time with the listing Guidelines providing some useful information. I think this group is still working out some fine tuning for the site (taking my feedback seriously at this point), but appears good to go right now.
If you are looking for some older photobooks or maybe selling one that no longer fits in your collection, I recommend you go check it out. Might put some extra spending money in your pocket, or at least that’s what I am hoping as I plan to list a few more books from my collection that are need of a new home. Maybe while you are there, check out my listing for a new copy of Ciociaria.
Developing a Creative Photo Book, a virtual (Zoom) workshop I will be leading again in conjunction with Medium Photo, September 11th, 12th, 18th, & 19th. More details and sign-up available now at Medium Photo.