In the age of Amazon, the book publishing world is changing at a rapid pace. Book stores continue to close, reader habits are morphing and competition grows for the attention of the consumer.
“The future of publishing is fraught with opportunity and peril,” writes Mark Coker in Publisher’s Weekly. He details 10 trends that he thinks every author and publisher should be closely following for a read on where the industry is heading in the next few years.
The list includes the “democratization” of publishing; the global reach of e-books; the rise of indie authors; the glut of high-quality, low-cost e-books; and Amazon’s impact on “devaluing” e-books.
More than anything Coker focuses on the growth of self-publishing and shifting perception of indie authors. Self-publishing no longer has a stigma for authors, he says.
“Ten years ago, self-publishing was viewed as the last resort for writers,” he writes. “Today, self-publishing is becoming the first choice for many writers.”
Independent authors will play a much larger role in the industry forward, he argues. In a fragmented industry, quality writers will still be essential.
“The power center of the publishing industry is shifting from publishers to writers,” Coker writes. “Writers will determine the fate of publishers and retailers by deciding when, where, and how they publish.”
Read the full article here.
For years book industry experts have been predicting the slow death of print books, as e-books continued to evolve and consume the time of readers. Good or bad, the tide seemed inevitable.
But the latest data suggests that print books may not be on its deathbed, after all.
The number of print books sold in 2014 increased by 2.4 percent from a year earlier, totaling 635 million units, according to Nielsen Book Scan. That may not sound dramatic, but the number represents growth at a time when most people are forecasting steady declines.
“For Books, Print is Back,” Publishers Weekly proclaimed in its coverage. Print sales plateaued in 2012, when 590 million books were sold, according to BookScan. (BookScan captures about 80 percent of sales and the more recent numbers were also inflated by the addition of Wal-Mart, Publishers Weekly notes.)
Meanwhile, the growth of ebooks has slowed noticeably, to single digit levels after years of meteoric adoptions. Ebooks make up about 27 percent of the market these days, but print seems to be enjoying a bit of mini-revival.
But the news was not all good. Sales of adult fiction print books were down 7.9 percent from a year earlier. No adult fiction titles sold more a million copies in print, with only Gillian Flynn’s “Gone Girl” coming close, with 963,000 copies sold, Publishers Weekly reports.
Most of the growth in print was in juvenile and young adult categories, which hopefully translates to a new generation of readers engaging with print.