Publishing is one of the few businesses in the world where buyers in bulk expect to be able to return product, long after the initial order is placed. Most wholesalers and retailers expect a full refund for unsold books, regardless of their condition. Often books are returned damaged, and the publisher is forced to bear the cost of this loss. Large publishers can factor the inevitable cost of returned books into the cover price, because of the large volume they typically handle. Small independent publishers and self-published authors do not have this luxury, if they wish to be competitive.
Some large distributors have been known to order books, then return them before their 90-day invoices are due, while placing new orders for the same number of books they are returning. In this way, they can postpone payment for books received almost indefinitely.
In order to prevent these unethical business practices, and as part of an overall effort to create more equitable conditions for small independent publishers and self-published authors, Fair Trade Publishing eliminates the unfair ignominy of returns. If a wholesaler or retailer wishes to profit from the sale of a Fair Trade Publishing book, they must be willing to assume the risk that it will not sell. The publisher of any book takes the greatest risk in underwriting a creative effort that may or may not ultimately pay for itself. The publisher should not in addition have to assume the risk of his or her business partners.
In keeping with Fair Trade Publishing practices, Ancient Tower Press does not accept returns, unless books ordered by a wholesaler or retailer arrive damaged.
All wholesale and retail orders will be sent by insured mail. Ancient Tower Press will bear this cost for all wholesale and retail orders of 6 books or more. For orders less than 6 books, the cost of insurance will be passed on to retailers as part of the shipping and handling charge they will be required to pay.
Wholesalers and retailers should notify Ancient Tower Press immediately upon receipt of our books, if they arrive in damaged condition, so that we can file a timely claim. Damaged books must be returned for credit. Books returned in deliberately damaged condition (as with covers ripped off, or pages marked) will not be credited. Upon receipt of books determined to be legitimately damaged in shipping, a replacement order will be shipped.
If I do not hear from a wholesaler or retailer within 15 days of the shipment of any order, I will assume that the books arrived in satisfactory condition, and no refunds will be issued.
To set up a Retail Account, go here.
To set up a Wholesale Account, go here.