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KILLED OFF BY KINDLE; Book firm close after 35 years.

Byline: Nicola Stow

SCOTLAND'S leading true crime publishing house has fallen victim to the digital age.

After 35 years, award-winning Mainstream Publishing are closing with the loss of 10 jobs.

The shock news delivers a further blow to an industry already struggling amid the ebook revolution.

Last night, industry experts and writers described the Edinburgh company's demise as a sad loss to Scots publishing.

In August, Amazon revealed they were selling more ebooks for Kindles than printed versions, dispatching 114 digital titles for every 100 print books.

Best-selling Scots crime author Tony Black, whose novels include Paying For It and Long Time Dead, said: "It's very sad to see Mainstream going under.

"It's getting harder and harder for print publishers to make the numbers add up in the digital age, but I was shocked to see the announcement. I hope it's not a sign of things to come but the paper book is looking more like the old vinyl record every day."

But Mainstream founders Bill Campbell and Peter MacKenzie insisted they were going out on a high with a final true-crime title by Carol Ann Lee.

The publishing giant Random House took a 50 per cent stake in the Edinburgh-based company in 2005.

Campbell said: "We are not disappearing. The authors and the backlist will remain. Mainstream will become an imprint of Random House."

In addition to books by Gordon Brown, Hugh McIlvanney, Sir Ian Botham, Andy Goram and Magnus Magnusson, Mainstream have also produced an extensive catalogue of true crime.

They include autobiographies of Scots gangster Ian "Blink" MacDonald and Tam "The Licensee" McGraw.

mainstream hits Blink: A Journey Through Gangland Mayhem, by Ian MacDonald (June 2012). Crime boss Ian "Blink" MacDonald's autobiography is about life in Glasgow's gangland.

Crimelord: The Licensee: The True Story of Tam McGraw, by Dave Leslie (January 2007). The life of the late millionaire Glasgow mobster.

Catch Me If You Can, by Frank Abagnale with Stan Redding (August 2000). Autobiography of one of the 20th century's most famous conmen.

One of Your Own: The Life and Death of Myra Hindley, by Carol Ann Lee (April 2011). A biography of Britain's most hated murderess.


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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Mar 2, 2013
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