It’s official. Fine Books and Collections magazine released this statement on December 1. The magazine will be in print as a compendium only once a year while online content will be expanded and updated more frequently. I will be happy to have a chance to get all of the electronic information as a print compendium, even if it is only annually. I prefer my bibliographic information in print, in case I want to refer to it again quickly and easily.
From the Fine Books website:
“Fine Books & Collections Launches E-letter, Blog
2008-12-01 Durham, NC. Fine Books & Collections magazine announced today that it plans expand its online offering of information for collectors, while at the same time reduce its print schedule for the magazine to annually.
Beginning in January, the magazine plans to launch Fine Books “Notes”—a monthly e-letter sent to collectors free of charge. The e-letter will feature the writing of Nicholas Basbanes, Ian McKay, and Derek Hayes, all of whom had been regular contributors to the magazine.
The magazine also announced that it plans to launch the Gently Mad blog, a weekly blog journal written by Mr. Basbanes. The blog will appear on both the Fine Books & Collections web site (www.finebooksmagazine.com) and Mr. Basbanes’ own web site (www.gentlymad.com). Under agreement with Mr. Basbanes, Fine Books & Collections is taking over management of the author’s web site.
Many of the regular columnists from Fine Books & Collections magazine will now appear directly on the magazine’s web site. However, Fine Books & Collections will publish an annual compendium in November 2009, sent to all current subscribers and available for sale and digital download to others. The compendium will include content published throughout the year digitally, as well as new content and a directory.
Traffic on the publication’s web site topped subscribers to the magazine by a factor of three-fold. According to the magazine’s associate publisher, Kimberly Draper, traffic growth on the web site has been significant.
“We believe the addition of a blog by Nicholas Basbanes and adding fresh new content to the site on a regular basis will drive a considerable amount of new traffic to the site,” said Draper. “We very much want this to be a destination for book collectors, to be able to engage other collectors, find out what’s going on, and to create a more robust community.”
Fine Books and Collections magazine, which began life in 2003 as OP magazine, says it will continue to offer back issues to the print magazine for some time to come. “Our online store (store.finebooksmagazine.com) has proven to be very popular with collectors,” said Draper. “The thirty-six issues of the magazine published over the last six years—and now joined by an annual compendium—still contain a wealth of information for collectors. We think they will have a very long shelf life.”