From The Boston Globe:
When the Concord Free Press was just a radical idea with a one-title book list, founder Stona Fitch nervously pitched Wesley Brown , hoping to persuade the acclaimed author to let him publish Brown’s latest novel.
“You want me to give you this novel I’ve been writing for years,” he recalls Brown saying. “You’re not going to pay me. And you’re going to give it away for free and hope that readers donate money to something else.”
“I said, ‘Wes, yeah, that’s pretty much it.’ There’s this long pause and I’m waiting for something bad to happen. And he said, ‘I’m in.’ ”
Six years later, the Concord Free Press is about to publish its 10th book. Each copy in the 3,000-print run will be marked $0.00. The back jacket will announce: “This book is free.”
In return, readers agree to give away money, in any amount: to a charity, a stranger on the street, or someone who needs it. Donations since 2008 total $409,250 — and that is just those reported back to the publisher. Readers are also asked to pass along the book once they are finished, so donations continue to multiply.
Amidst so much negative news about the future of publishing, Fitch is trying to create a way for authors to get their books to readers, the guiding goal of any writer. At the same time, Fitch hopes to encourage generosity among readers.
Link to the rest at The Boston Globe and thanks to Joshua for the tip.