I gotta be completely honest: My secret weapon of choice for staying on top of new and forthcoming releases has been the “sort by release date” feature at STL. Yes, their database wasn’t perfect, but it suited me just fine, thank you. And now it’s gone.
So tonight I decided I needed to get better acquainted with Above the Treeline and I’m sorry but I find it completely counter-intuitive for what I’m looking for, not to mention it’s been a reminder of why I never adopted it in the first place.
On the positive side, it perfectly reiterates the sales presentations my HarperCollins Christian Publishing rep shares. (I haven’t tried the Cook or Tyndale catalogues tonight.)
On the negative side, I can’t sort by release date, and I can’t understand why the names of the author are in such teeny tiny font sizes.
Is this resource helpful to staff in your store?
Before they broke faith with our bookstore a few months ago, I would, at least once a week, send Ingram Book Group notifications about serious glitches in their database. I took the time to do this for free, sometimes to the benefit of an author, sometimes to help out a publisher, but always with Ingram themselves as the primary beneficiary.
Not any more. If they want to post nonsense like this about John Piper, I’m just going to enjoy the hilarity. Actually, their information is getting increasingly unreliable. But this one was too funny not to share. If you want to read it for yourself, it occurs in the second half of the ‘Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.’ for this recent Crossway book: 9781433550430
So that explains the lack of hair? Didn’t realize he was so financial savvy.
By the way, not once did anyone at Ingram ever say thanks.
Author Leonard Sweet:
Looking at the above picture, it’s sad to think it was Memorial Day weekend, 2015 when over 200 tractor trailers rolled into Send the Light’s new facility in Bristol, Tennessee; and now, a year later, they are shutting down.
Some good great bargains currently exist. We clicked some 90% off items into a cart and left them there and were surprised we still got them the next day. Some Bibles, books, and giftware are are at high discounts, while everything is 10 – 15% off depending on the size of your order. I’m not seeing any great discounts on Lumen, their house brand, but they may be negotiating to have another supplier take over that product line, which includes everything from t-shirts to mugs to communion supplies to reprints of classic books.
At the homeschool site, there is a posted reminder that they have pledged to their suppliers not to discount this product to consumers, which may still leave their hands tied on how the closeouts there are going to proceed. Perhaps this part of the business will also be spun off to someone else. There isn’t anything there to indicate to those customers what’s going on over at the main STL wholesale site.
With Send the Light Distribution winding down their business, Christian stores in Canada need an alternative for publishers not represented here. The Anchor Distributors / Word Alive announcement could not have come at a better time. Some of us have used Anchor before, several of you use them frequently, and for some this might be a new supplier. We reached out to Anchor with some direct questions, but never heard back. The following was an attachment to an email our store simply did not receive, but was forwarded by a Christian Book Shop Talk reader and store manager. Note the line about billing being in Canadian funds. Interesting how that will work or if orders will need to be, by necessity, all fully prepaid.
Days after first reported by Christian Retailing, Send the Light (STL) Distribution confirmed its closing in an email to stores last night and on its website this morning with a very short note:
Needless to say, this will be devastating to small stores in the U.S. who used the distributor to consolidate orders through a single source, avoiding the paperwork and freight costs associated with dealing with individual publishers. Also affected are:
- Canadian Stores: Many of the small publishers STL carried have no representation here; the company was also a good source for non-book items that Ingram (Spring Arbor) won’t ship to Canada.
- Homeschoolers: It has to be presumed at this point that HomeSchoolCatalog.org is also shutting down
- Independent Publishers: This will hit former Advocate Distribution publishers hard, and as we’ve indicated elsewhere on the blog, if they choose Ingram Publisher Services, they’ve lost smaller stores like ours who have had our discount yanked for not reaching Ingram’s $5K (US) minimum.
- Remainder Booksellers: Again, presumably Great Value Books (GVB) is also closing.
Not too long ago STL had moved into a new warehouse, and recently folded GVB into the larger company. Operations were streamlined, efficient and of great benefit to stores like ours.
We pray for the staff and management of STL in this time of transition, and for the many categories of people listed above who must now find other means of getting requested products.
A consumer-interest version of this story has been posted to our parent blog, Thinking Out Loud