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B5 Script Books Lottery (Jan 2014)

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  • B5 Script Books Lottery (Jan 2014)

    You may have already seen the alert from B5 Books, but here it is again... just in case you missed it. The long, and short of it is that the B5 Books team are offering many of the B5 Script Books at their original prices. These are returns or buybacks in as new condition.

    Blurb from the email alert:

    Before we moved in November last year, we made available sets of our limited stock of J. Michael Straczynski Script Book Series buy-back sets and ECHOES OF ALL OUR CONVERSATIONS customer service reserves that were being stored at CafePress in Kentucky.

    Now, we are offering the chance to order the following individual books from our back catalog: the original JMS Scripts series, the Other Voices Scripts series, the TV Movies script book, the autographed Echoes series, the 2012 Edition of the Chronology book with improved layout and white cover, and the Artifacts from Beyond the Rim book with either the white cover or the black cover.

    With such limited quantities available (at their original price!) we are holding a lottery-type drawing so that all fans have the same chance of winning the opportunity to order the few books we have left. We ship worldwide.

    This opportunity is for:

    fans who weren't aware of these books when they were originally released
    fans who need single volumes to complete their collections
    fans who want to start or complete their collection with us instead of facing inflated prices on eBay


    You can enter the lottery at the link below.

    http://b5news.com/
    Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

    Kosh: Good!

  • #2
    Personally, I've put in for a copy of 'Artifacts', as I hear it's a nice package.

    Any views on that particular book?

    I would think it'll make a nice addition to my Vols. 1-15 of the black script books and the Echoes series; they've all been excellent reads. I got a lot of my script books second hand on eBay and Amazon, sometimes at bargain prices.

    However, I should emphasize that it took a lot of time and effort to hunt them all down (I enjoy that kind of thing!). Nice to see them available all in one place, it's the perfect opportunity for anyone who is new to the B5 Books phenomenon.
    Last edited by Ubik; 02-06-2014, 03:21 PM.
    Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

    Kosh: Good!

    Comment


    • #3
      It’s not really a lottery though is it. Just another gimmick to hopefully shift that extra stock they have. The first lottery – and this is the third or forth now - for the script books was something like 5 or 6 years ago, and going by what was said on forums like Firstones.com everyone who put their name down, “won”! If only every lottery was like that. (And they’ve all been available for sale continuously after the limited periods ended – there was a screen kicking around on their cafepress site for long enough).

      Genuinely, no harm to them, business is business after all, and it IS a great way for fans who didn’t know about the books to get them. I always felt the limited period gimmick (or marketing decision) to rush sales along was a bit of an exercise in painting themselves into a corner, unnecessary and even unfair on those who were really struggling to pay for them within the supposedly limited period - but this kind of thing helps negate that I guess.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Triple F
        Genuinely, no harm to them, business is business after all, and it IS a great way for fans who didn't know about the books to get them. I always felt the limited period gimmick (or marketing decision) to rush sales along was a bit of an exercise in painting themselves into a corner, unnecessary and even unfair on those who were really struggling to pay for them within the supposedly limited period - but this kind of thing helps negate that I guess.
        I'm just glad they're available again in some form for those who missed out the first time around. We could quibble about marketing tactics, but as you say B5 Books is still a business, and run as such. There are plenty of online book vendors price gouging for second hand copies of the original script books. This tactic at least helps to negate that.

        What the lottery does do is avoid the books being bought up en-masse by those simply looking to re-sell for profit.

        Sure, B5 Books could have listed everything they had (with stock levels) and let people dive in. This, to me, feels far fairer for those who genuinely want the books.

        I suppose the only drawback is that you won't get the 'early bird' discount rates that applied when they were first released! Ah well.
        Last edited by Ubik; 02-07-2014, 02:02 AM.
        Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

        Kosh: Good!

        Comment


        • #5
          Being a fan, especially if it’s in a niche market which doesn’t get the same retailing (and competition) opportunities as the more mainstream, does leave us open to……. Imaginative pricing.

          Your correct of course, there’s some truly outrageous pricing going on by those in the second hand market and the more cynical (in my view) so called fans who are always on the lookout to make a few bucks off others. But to a degree that comes back to the self imposed marketing strategy of saying the books where only available for a short limited period and wouldn’t be available again….. Neither of which was completely accurate, regardless of the language used to explain why they’ve all been more or less continuously available from launch.

          The limited time offer (as explained in Captain’s jacks book on marketing) did it’s job of pushing sales along, but undeniably also created the environment (perceived as it turns out) for opportunists to sell them on at extortionate prices. If that decision hadn’t been made – and left fans with that impression - then there would have been no room for an overpriced second hand market.

          But it is a good thing that they’re still available, and going by what I understand of other script books, exceptionally good value for money due to the sheer amount they contain.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Triple F View Post
            Being a fan, especially if it's in a niche market which doesn’t get the same retailing (and competition) opportunities as the more mainstream, does leave us open to……. Imaginative pricing.
            Hmmm, to an extent… yes. But a lot of the books also struck me as great value for money. As with any product, it’s worth what people will pay for it! Supply and demand tend to naturally find a middle ground.

            The Echoes books always seemed a bit steep to me (especially without the debut discount). I might be an anomaly of sorts, because I really wasn’t bothered about them being signed. As such, my perceived value of that aspect of the books was different to most other fans. Even though I liked the books a lot I had to think very carefully before ordering.

            However, all that said, the customer service from Jaclyn and the B5 Books team has always been nothing short of amazing, and they are always open to balanced feedback. I know they definitely want the fans to feel the products they deliver represent value for money. It’s in their interest that they do. On the one occasion I was not satisfied (Vol 2.5 of the script books – see the associated thread for more detail) I was issued with a full refund, no questions asked. I find it hard to complain when the service is that good. If it fails to meet your expectations, you can always send it back! That does soften the blow a great deal.

            The pricing on the original black script books series seemed pretty bang on to me, especially when you compare to other script books (or indeed buying individual scripts!). The B5 20 book, whilst expensive, totally earned its price tag and was the kind of thing I’d wanted to see for quite some time, i.e. a full colour hardback done to high standards. I’d been arguing the point for ditching Cafe Press and exploiting economies of scale for some time. If you have enough demand you can get far more for your money using a pro printing house. This was based on my experience of friends self publishing graphic novels to a high standard, for an affordable per unit costs.

            Originally posted by Triple F View Post
            Your correct of course, there’s some truly outrageous pricing going on by those in the second hand market and the more cynical (in my view) so called fans who are always on the lookout to make a few bucks off others. But to a degree that comes back to the self imposed marketing strategy of saying the books where only available for a short limited period and wouldn’t be available again….. Neither of which was completely accurate, regardless of the language used to explain why they’ve all been more or less continuously available from launch.

            The limited time offer (as explained in Captain’s jacks book on marketing) did its job of pushing sales along, but undeniably also created the environment (perceived as it turns out) for opportunists to sell them on at extortionate prices. If that decision hadn’t been made – and left fans with that impression - then there would have been no room for an overpriced second hand market.
            This is a slightly more complex kettle of fish. Marketing is marketing, and I appreciate B5 Books are selling a product. A ‘limited time only’ POD product always seemed like a bit of an oxymoron to me, but so it goes. One thing I will say is that Jaclyn and the team have always been massively accommodating if you wanted to put books aside on ‘lay away’, to purchase at a later date. I never felt too pressured because of this.

            Personally, I would like to see them do away with the ‘time limited availability’ model. The debut discount offers, I can cope with. That tactic similarly drives sales, but it also rewards you for ordering early on. It benefits both parties. In most cases I’d rather see a small print run that eventually sells out, and then perhaps reprints if demand is there. Now that B5 Books are moving away from Cafe Press and the POD model, it may be something we’ll see. Perhaps there’ll even be an eBook option for new products, which would solve many of the issues highlighted above. I guess we can only wait and see.

            It’s true that there’s a finite number of books out there. The original script books and the echoes books definitely aren’t being printed anymore, that’s for sure. But, there are still plenty of copies in circulation, as evidenced by me buying pretty much an entire set of script books over the course of a year from various Amazon, eBay and private vendors. For the most part I paid about 50% - 70% of the cover price. I think the time has long since passed where fans are fighting to get these, hence the second hand market value has dropped. They don’t command silly prices anymore, and any high prices you see (with the exception of the rather more rare Vol. 15) are artificially inflated by sellers who are trying their luck. The lottery will help further counter this, and the less savoury elements out there trying to rip people off.

            It’s worth mentioning that there are also a few good eggs who have rather stupendous B5 collections and don’t price gouge. Jan is a case in point and has helped me acquire hard to find items on a few occasions without charging over the odds.

            Originally posted by Triple F View Post
            But it is a good thing that they’re still available, and going by what I understand of other script books, exceptionally good value for money due to the sheer amount they contain.
            Yes, definitely. It’s wonderful they are there in the first place. Regardless of the ins and outs of pricing, availability and all that jazz, I’m just glad the books exist. I hope the lottery allows some newer fans access to the material.
            Last edited by Ubik; 02-07-2014, 05:43 AM.
            Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

            Kosh: Good!

            Comment


            • #7
              Thanks for posting this, Ubik! I've been sick for a couple of weeks now and haven't been around as much as I'd like.

              I'm really glad that these are being made available for fans new and old. I love that so many people are able to experience the scripts themselves and see how that translates onto the screen. And JMS' commentary (with attendant footnotes and parentheticals) is worth the price of the books all by themselves, IMO.

              Jan
              "Fascism always comes in quietly, holding a flag in one hand and a holy book in the other, inching its way in. The bugles and drums only sound after they've already taken over and believe it's too late to do anything about it." JMS Twitter Dec. 24, 2017

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Jan View Post
                Thanks for posting this, Ubik! I've been sick for a couple of weeks now and haven't been around as much as I'd like.

                I'm really glad that these are being made available for fans new and old. I love that so many people are able to experience the scripts themselves and see how that translates onto the screen. And JMS' commentary (with attendant footnotes and parentheticals) is worth the price of the books all by themselves, IMO.

                Jan
                Absolutely. The JMS commentary is what makes these script books so special.
                Jan from Denmark

                My blog :

                http://www.babylonlurker.dk

                "Our thoughts form the Universe - they *always* matter"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by babylonlurker View Post
                  Absolutely. The JMS commentary is what makes these script books so special.
                  It's what really sold me on the script books, beyond the obvious content!
                  Last edited by Ubik; 02-11-2014, 03:00 AM.
                  Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

                  Kosh: Good!

                  Comment

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