Why did Mark Haddon ‘physically’ attack Amazon?


(meaning – adverb from the adjective ‘physical’ – relating to the body; relating to, or resembling material things or nature; involving or requiring bodily contact) Dictionary.com

Mark Haddon, award-winning author of ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time’, has decided that bookstores will be supplied with more superior copies of his latest collection of short stories ‘The Pier Falls’ than Amazon. They will receive inferior copies. The difference being that illustrations are not included in the inferior copies.

Why has he done this?

Because he feels Amazon is a “merciless commercial machine”. (The Times, J Malvern,17/10/16) Speaking at the Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, he explained that he feels we like bookstores more than we love Amazon because of its ‘physical’ presence. He loves “being in a physical place to talk about books to people in your town” and he prefers physical books, as “eBooks can’t be shared.” He’s not alone in his beliefs. Victoria Hislop (author of ‘The Island, The Thread) also feels “we all love bricks-and-mortar bookshops” and she reckons “most authors spend a lot of time in them.”

Child physically in a bookstore
Physically in a bookstore

She’s right. I love bookstores and bookstores love me, the customer. I revel in running my hand along the rows of glossy dust jackets (Wonder why they are called that?) But most bookstores don’t love me, the indie publisher. The self published writer who dared to take her copies of her book to a bricks-and-mortar bookstore for them to take one look and declare from their pursed lips, “No, we don’t do self published.” Continue reading Why did Mark Haddon ‘physically’ attack Amazon?