Friday, January 22, 2016

On-Line Sale (updated)

The sale is now over.  Thank you to the folks who participated.  It was a lot of fun.  Despite the sale being over, if there are books that you saw in the pictures that you are interested in, please drop Jude Feldman an email <>.  Everything that didn't sell will remain available to sponsors for purchase while we get the books graded and in our inventory.

Hi Everyone,

Here's the link to pictures of the books that will be going on sale at 10 AM, PST, tomorrow.

If you're interested in purchasing any of them, you can ask questions and make purchase arrangements via email or phone (toll free in the US at 888 893-4008).  If the phone is busy, it's just because we're on the other line.  Please give us a call back.

Just a few details -

1)  You cannot make payment arrangements until 10 AM tomorrow.
2)  If you have questions about a specific title, just let us know and we'll do our best to answer them.  However, I don't think we'll be able to send you pictures of the book until after 12 noon.
3)  I will cover the cost of standard shipping in the US and we will be charging international shipping at our cost.
4)  All the prices will be discounted by 10% for the sale.  I will continue to honor that discount for the remainder of the day as well.
5)  General Condition Notes:
    a)  Most of the volumes are first editions but there is a scattering of nice book clubs as well (i.e. Dune, Stranger in the Strange Land, Jack of Shadows, Lord of Light, and so on).
    b)  Many of the hardcovers are signed, especially titles by Zelazny, Leiber, Bradley, and Card.
    c)  The owner was a smoker who quit indoors years ago and many of the books were kept either in plastic or behind glass.  Neither I nor any other staff have noticed any detectable odor of smoke.  However, some of the spines are clearly tanned (i.e. darkened) as a result of smoke exposure.
    d)  Like many areas in San Francisco, there was some damp in the house along with dust, which equates to foxing, mostly at the top of the text block but some on the fore-edge as well.  With only one or two exceptions, none of the books show any moisture damage and none have mold or mildew.  (Foxing is a pattern of brown marks on paper possibly caused by some sort of poorly understood mold. It is inert and does not damage the integrity of the paper -

If you'll be able to join us in person, that is great.  We'll be letting you in at 10 AM.  Please come in through the cafe door (the bookstore door will be locked).

This is the first time we've done something like this, so please be patient.  We'll get the kinks worked out and it'll be much smoother next time.


Monday, January 11, 2016

Sponsor Letter January 11th, 2016

Dear Sponsors,

I'm sorry that there have been so many emails coming to you over the past two weeks.  As I've said, I've making this up as we go along and that leads to quite a few, "Oh, we'd better explain that" moments.  Don't worry though, this is a short one and (hopefully) the last 'til next month.

The Dashiell Hammett Version

1)  If you're a 2016 sponsor and you would like to be in the drawing for the private event with Pat Rothfuss at 5:30 pm on Friday, January 15th, please reply to this email and say so (and, do look at the details below).

2)  As requested by several folks, I've set up an on-line calendar listing all of our sponsor events.  The URL is The events aren't all up there yet but they should be in a few days.

3)  Also as requested by several people, we'll be videoing the presentations that we're doing in February.  Probably both as live-streams and stored at Youtube.  Details in the February newsletter.

4)  We made a typo in one of the dates listed for the February presentations.  The correct date for the final presentation, "Been There, Done That, Wish I Hadn't", with Gail Carriger, Richard Kadrey, and Pat Murphy, is Tuesday, February 23rd.

5)  If you were a sponsor in 2015 and haven't renewed yet, please feel free to come to the social on January 28th.  If you like, you could renew on the spot but you are very welcome to just come and celebrate with us.  That party is in just a few weeks, so it's time to RSVP if you're coming (as usual, one guest is welcome).  You are also welcome to come to the sponsors' general meeting on Thursday, March 31st, at 7 pm.

6)  I think I made a mistake by rushing into making the offer to loan money to help Precita Eyes (please see the last sponsor note for details).  I'd like to know if you approve of that action or not.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Sponsor Letter January 9th, 2016

Hi, it's me again.

Before I get too far into this letter, I want to thank all the sponsors out there who will not be renewing this year . . . yeah, you read that right.

Last year, at a time when we were all ready to pack it in, over 800 people stepped up and said that Borderlands mattered. They put their money behind it but, more importantly, they let us know they cared.  It was one of the nicest, coolest, and most wonderful things that has ever happened to me. At that time, I knew I was in this for the long run but, at the same time, I knew that all our sponsors were not.  And that's just fine.

If you're reading this, you're one of the people who made bookselling history.  No store has ever done what we achieved and, even now, people in our industry don't quite know what to make of it.

But now, we're settling in for the long trip.  If we're to stay open, we need to keep on making history.  On January 1st, it was time for sponsors to renew and we needed 300 sponsors by March 31st if we were to remain open through 2016.

On Thursday, the 7th, we made it.  It took just one week for more than 300 sponsors to re-up.

So, if you've been thinking to yourself: "Gee, I really should renew but December was an expensive month." . . . or, as one sponsor wrote me yesterday, "The Canadian dollar is pretty weak right now but, if you need me, let me know and I'll sign up again." . . . or, for that matter, "I live in Texas and, as much as I like Alan's rambling emails, that's all I've gotten out of this sponsorship" --  Please, don't worry about renewing this year.  But, do stay in touch, visit us, and read the newsletter.  If we get in a jam in a few years, perhaps you'll feel like helping out.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.  You allowed me and all my friends here to keep on doing what we love.  And in doing so you changed how we look at Borderlands and how we look at ourselves.

In short: you've done plenty, feel free to take a break.

On the other hand, if you want to stay aboard for the rest of the ride, keep on reading.  I'll tell you why every single sponsor over the required 300 makes a huge difference to the future of Borderlands, as well as what we'll be doing with our sponsors this year.

All Best,

PS  Sponsor or not, renewal or not; if there is something I can do for you in the future, just let me know.  I owe you, big time.

The Short Version

1)  You can renew your sponsorship by mail, by phone, in person and, new this year, on-line at

2)  Sponsorships over the 300 level are how we will make it possible for Borderlands to buy a building, which will go most of the way toward ensuring that we'll be around for decades to come.  Our lease is good for about five and a half years but, after that, we're going to have problems.

3)  Because we had so many sponsors than we absolutely needed last year, we're likely going to be able to help local art non-profit Precita Eyes (who painted the mural on the side of our shop) keep their building by giving them a low interest, 12-month loan of $20,000.

4)  Second Sponsors' Open Mic scheduled for Friday, January 22nd at 7 pm.  Please email Greg Roensch at if you would like to participate.

5)  An advance sale for sponsors only of a notable collection is coming up.  Mostly hardcover first editions of 1970s and '80s SF, many signed. For our out-of-town sponsors, books will be viewable on-line at our blog - - probably starting late Friday night, January 22nd.  You can call or email to purchase them if you can't make it to the store. The sale will be Saturday, January 23rd from 10 am to noon.

6)  The 5th (!) Sponsor Social: Thursday, January 28th, from seven to eleven in the evening.  Drinks, food, and a celebration for achieving our goal for 2016.  And, possibly, a Borderlands staff talent show (be afraid; be very, very afraid).

7)  A month of presentations on Tuesdays in February at 7:00 PM for experienced and aspiring writers, along with anyone else who's curious how the book business works.
Feb. 2nd, Alan Beatts, "The Life-Cycle of a Book"
Feb. 9th, Jeremy Lassen, "Publishing Contracts: Good, Bad, and Ugly"
Feb. 16th, Scott Cox, "Public Reading, Tips and Tricks"
Feb. 22nd, Panel Discussion with authors Gail Carriger, Richard Kadrey and Pat Murphy: "Been There, Done That, Wish I Hadn't"

8)  Sponsors' General Meeting, Thursday, March 31st, 2016 at 7:00 pm.  A chance to talk about how we're doing, where we're going, and to give us your advice.