My idea was to delete the books and look for a publisher. I pointed out that this would be next to impossible since, unless you have a book full of lies, half truths and sensationalism no publisher is interested. Matter-of-fact fully investigated and referenced books are not sexy enough for a public that thinks the myriad of "ghost hunter"/"monster hunter" TV shows are real....and some even take The X-Files and Dr Who as though they are documentaries. But I have a nice supply of the books for my own reference. Some 40-50 (that number was scary) years of actual real work. My family know that when I slip this mortal coil they will have rare and VERY pricey books to sell.
"What about Sanderson or Heuvelman or even Keyhoe?" was the response. It was pointed out that, without those authors/investigators -whatever faults- there would be no mass media dealing with UFOs, Bigfoot, ghosts and others. No rip-off fake investigators.
I pointed out that you could not blame authors long dead for the mess of today!
But there is a point here. Books by these past authors, most of which were published 30-40 years ago, are out-of-date. We have learnt a lot more -far more- since those days. So why do people want these books -to read what authors thought 3-4 (or in reprints 50-60 years) decades ago? Why are these people not interested in modern, up-to-date books?
Oh please do not let it be because they have been told they are "collectible"!
I have another theory. It is that people interested in these subjects do not want to read books. They are too lazy and unless they can tap onto a link on the internet or use the remote control top watch Trash TV...they just are not interested. Buying and holding and reading a book that you can re-read and reference over-and over again...it is a thing of the past.
Take this AOP blog for example. Started in 2011 and this over 340,00 views. Posts get high views not just when originally published but years later. Now that in itself leads you to believe that, surely, there is an audience for the books, right? But 8 years and well over 340,000 views and three -3- books have sold.
There is nothing wrong with the books and some of the very critical people I sent copies to have given them high praise (something I was not expecting from certain quarters) -in fact, Some Things and Some More Things have even been referenced in graphic novels -cover facsimiles being featured. People can see what is in each book but nothing. Are internet sites that use a wholly incorrect online source (giving some fake accounts or accounts with things added that did not happen) over and over again far better than reading accurate accounts.
And if you add the other social media I use to promote my books and posts, I pointed out, you can treble the number of views.
There was silence. I then added: "You know how many messages I have had since 2013 stating they will be buying this or that book? Do you know how many of those people did buy a copy?" The words "Go on then"...honestly. 25 messages and zero books sold.
That was a conversation killer.
So, I need to now sit down and work out when I will start deleting and which books first. "That is going to be very hard, surely?" I was asked. Do you know, I have my copies and my feelings towards the books are that they are doing nothing. Even discussing them today I had to be dragged screaming and kicking. I just shrug. I feel nothing.